Syria: How Complex Could It Possibly Be?

I have tried in the past on many occasions to try and explain the complexities of what is happening in Syria……I am not sure that I have made it clear just how absurdly complex it really is……I saw this cartoon and decided to try it more more time…..

This is a fine example of what the war in Syria looks like……


This Cartoon by Pat Bagley, Salt Lake Tribune

Is it clear now?

What could possibly go wrong?

The Middle East Has Fractured. Is Europe Next?

The debate over what to do about the group we call ISIS….or is it IS?……or is it ISIL?  You decide which acronym you like best……but the situation is causing some heated debate…..the situation is causing some fracturing in the EU…..and it is beginning to do the same here in the US…..and then there is the debate over the millions of refugees…..

The Middle East has fractured almost completely….Syria, Iraq, Yemen, even Lebanon is started to feel the tug on its society and it probably will not be long before it expands exponentially around the entire region….

The refugee crisis has already caused some fracturing within the EU and neighboring states…..even here in the US….it has begun……

Source: The Middle East Has Fractured. Is Europe Next? A Tablet Roundtable Discussion. – Tablet Magazine

I fear that this issue will mushroom into something that cannot be reversed…..we have been stretched to the limit many times…..but this time I do not think that we can rebound if we continue on the course that is being dictated by politics…..

The country is fracturing along superficial lines…..lines that could be a long lasting division…..when Americans show up with guns at a place of worship to intimidate other Americans then this is getting to be very disturbing… all sounds too damn familiar to me.


McCain Speaks Truth

I will be honest…in the past I have not been very kind to some of the things that McCain has said or done….but I would like to say here and now that he has once again got my respect…..his stands on benefits for vets has gone a long way to turn me from my path of dislike for him……and he has written a new chapter in my relationship with him…..

We all know the stuff Trump spreads as somehow the truth is nothing manure spread like peanut butter on a cracker…..and his attacks on ALL Muslims has upset many people….most of whom will be called “liberals” or “apologists” or the bigger “Bleeding hearts”…..McCain has come to speak the truth…..

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said Donald Trump’s divisive rhetoric is only serving to turn the international Muslim community against the U.S.

“Oh, I think it has an interesting effect of turning Muslims all over the world against the United States of America, which is 99.44 percent people who practice an honorable religion,” the Arizona senator said of Trump on CBS’s “Face the Nation” on Sunday.

McCain, a former GOP presidential nominee, also accused 2016 hopefuls of harping on the Syrian refugee crisis, while the U.S. faces much more substantial threats.

“As all of our candidates bloviate about the refugees, [Syrian President] Bashar Assad is a major cause of the refugees which are now flooding Europe and causing such consternation in the United States,” he said. “A no-fly zone will provide a refuge at least for some of these refugees.”

McCain said the longer the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) is able to stay in power, the more the terrorist group’s ideology will begin to sink in.

“And by the way, the fact that is we can succeed here and ISIS is not that strong, but the longer they stay in power, the more this poison spreads and metastasizes from as far away as Afghanistan, Africa, and other parts of the world,” he said.

(The Hill)

While I will never agree with him on much…..I will do so on this issue…..I will never agree with him on US foreign policy for the Middle East… blaming refugees solely on Assad or a “no fly zone”….neither of these are the real problems or a real solution…..but I will give McCain props for speaking to truth.

Reformers And The Devout

I have spent some time in the Middle East…..first as a researcher/analyst for a Spanish newspaper and later as a resident for a couple of months in between jobs……I originally applied for a job at the UN Mission in Tunisia as an analyst but I was beaten out of the job by a guy that had many more letters after his name than I did.

During my studies on international relations and the Middle East I had to take courses in history of the region and a course on the Quran…the theory being to have a good perspective on the people and issues one must have knowledge of the Quran.  (No I did not convert to Islam as some may think)……You see it is difficult to understand the region if one cannot understand the religion.  I do not pretend to be an expert on the Quran…..but I do know enough to NOT condemn a religion because someone else has a hard on for it……

Now with the background out of the way……let us take a leap and say that the world wins this battle with ISIS and/or Al-Qaeda…..for a better Middle East, a more calm and prosperous Middle East there needs to be a few changes, according to some……..

Source: Some Thoughts on Reforming Islam interpretations and Fighting Terrorism | Middle East Briefing

All those that are demonizing Islam for whatever reason….I ask them….what do you want of Muslims?…..conversion to your “approved” religion or maybe just kill them all……

In closing….I have found that many who want to sound semi-intelligent when writing or talking about the Middle East and the problems always find these quotes from the Quran to justify their hatred…..especially when it comes to what they want to call jihad or the war against the West….first of all the modern jihad came into being in the 1940’s when the Muslim leader of Palestine called for it to try and stop the influx of Brits and Jews (that is as simply as I can put it…if someone wants a more detailed history lesson then I will provide upon request)…..

I have tried to not comment on all the hate speak against the Quran as the inspiration for the actions of ISIS and such groups……originally I posted that if one uses the Quran as the true words of God then Surah 63 should remove all doubt how the devout feel about these groups…..(at least to me…..)

al-Munafiqun (the hypocrites)

1. When the hypocrites come to you, they say, “We bear witness that you are God’s Messenger.” God knows that you are His Messenger, and God bears witness that the hypocrites are liars.

2. They treat their oaths as a cover, and so they repel others from God’s path. Evil is what they do.

3. That is because they believed, and then disbelieved; so their hearts were sealed, and they cannot understand.

4. When you see them, their appearance impresses you. And when they speak, you listen to what they say. They are like propped-up timber. They think every shout is aimed at them. They are the enemy, so beware of them. God condemns them; how deluded they are!

5. And when it is said to them, “Come, the Messenger of God will ask forgiveness for you,” they bend their heads, and you see them turning away arrogantly.

6. It is the same for them, whether you ask forgiveness for them, or do not ask forgiveness for them; God will not forgive them. God does not guide the sinful people.

If the only Muslim you know is on FOX News then please keep your bullsh*t comments to yourself…….


“Disrupt, Degrade And Destroy”

These are the words of…..well…..damn near everyone in the Western world…..every leader that hunts down the closest mic has made that statement in one form or the other……

Now ask yourself….what are the realistic chances that this will be accomplished?

I offer up a couple of perspectives on this subject for you to see what is being said out of the view of the TV cameras and the babbling of presidential candidates….there is more to the policies against ISIS than the lines muttered by people that cannot spell ISIS much less have an idea of what to do……

These two articles give an analysis of the situation that we are dealing with in our conflict with ISIS/AQ……

Source: Is defeating the Islamic State impossible? – Al-Monitor: the Pulse of the Middle East

Source: Confronting the Islamic State

Before I some moronic eye roll from d/bags that get their news from Right wing news outlets and bottom feeding bloggers……try reading the articles and use your brain for something other than sponge for idiocy…..

The Crowded Skies Of Syria

Yes, Irene this is about that magical land commonly known as SYRIA.

A couple of years ago we had the people of Syria un an uprising against their leader, Assad…..this was during what the media likes to call “the Arab Spring”….that quickly morphed into an armed uprising of rebels groups in opposition to Assad…..then there was a report of the use of CWs by the government against the people and the US waded into the fray……then there is ISIS, that barbaric group that is fighting everyone.  This situation plowed along until Assad conned the Russians into joining the fight against the rebels…..and then there was a horrific plane bomb that kills mostly Russians and ISIS claimed responsibility… Russia is taking on rebels as well as ISIS….let’s not forget the Turks that have decided to join the fight but most of their foes are the Kurds……

Then this week ISIS strikes again…..they execute a Norwegin and a Chinese person… thanx to their actions ISIS will have a new foe to join in the fight…….looks like Carson’s screw up by mentioning the China was in Syria….may have been prophetic…….

Beijing has vowed to bring ISIS to justice after the group said it had executed two hostages, a Chinese and a Norwegian.

ISIS said it had killed the two men, identified as Chinese national Fan Jinghui and Norwegian citizen Ole Johan Grimsgaard-Ofstad in its English-language online magazine Dabiq.

President Xi Jinping “strongly condemned” ISIS for the killing of Fan, the first known Chinese national to be killed by the group, and the country’s foreign ministry said the Chinese government would “definitely hold the perpetrators accountable.”

But how to respond to Fan’s “cold-blooded and violent” death presents a dilemma for China, which has stayed on the sidelines in the fight against ISIS and has a long-held principle of noninterference in other countries’ affairs.


Kinda amazing since I had just read an article about China and the Middle East just before the news of the ISIS executions hit the wires……

Source: Is it time for China to step up its engagement in the Middle East? – Al-Monitor: the Pulse of the Middle East

Soon there will be planes from US, Syria, Russia, Turkey, France, and whoever else wants to join in and now China may be the next to enter Syrian airspace…..

Damn!  That is gonna be one damn crowded airspace!

And all these planes makes the possibility of an accident causing an international incident rise 10 fold……

What could possibly go wrong?

In the battle against IS, where is the Arab coalition?

The coalition against ISIS keeps growing…..and many people that I have talked with because they know that I watch and write about the Middle East ask me the same question….almost daily.

Why has the Arab countries not stepped up?

An excellent question that would take me an entire book to explain accurately……that is why when I saw this piece while reading the news I found an easier way of answering the question without giving myself a migraine….

Arab countries claiming their opposition against the Islamic State have stood down in their battle against the self-proclaimed “Caliph Ibrahim,” creating a political void in the coalition.

Source: In the battle against IS, where is the Arab coalition? – Al-Monitor: the Pulse of the Middle East

The sectarian divide will have to come to a head if this situation will ever be resolved……