A recent opinion piece written by Tim Lister for CNN entitled “Assad May Win Syria’s War, But He Will Preside Over A Broken Country,” has unintentionally revealed part of the plan for Syria maintained by the United States, Israel, GCC, and NATO. In lieu of the complete destruction of the Syrian government, the “coalition” of invaders seems to be focusing on their Plan B goal of “federalization” and fracturing of Syria using Kurds, Islamic terrorists, and other religious/ethnic groups to create a collection of religious/ethno states incapable of resisting the will of world powers and one very specific regional power.
Thus, while Syria seems poised to eliminate the terrorist presence in the country at some point in the not so distant future, the question still remains over the Kurdish, Turkish, and American presence and the potentially massive implications for conflict with other national powers if military action is taken to live up to the word of President Assad who promised to liberate “every inch” of Syrian soil. But even if these three issues could be resolved and the war ended today, Syria has experienced seven years of the most intense fighting of the 21st Century and a massive portion of its infrastructure, housing, economy, healthcare, and general living standards has been turned into rubble. Syria, has been depleted militarily, economically, and in just about every other way possible as a result of the Western-backed invasion that has over 400,000 people killed.
In the CNN piece Lister concludes by stating,
Bashar al-Assad has won in the sense that there is no viable alternative to his rule that enjoys broad international support. He has lost in the sense that he now presides over a broken country, whose reconstruction could cost anything from $100 billion upwards. International donors and investors are highly unlikely to venture anywhere near Syria until a credible political settlement is worked out. As Syrian journalist Jihad Yazigi put it, "Saudi Arabia is not going to put money in a country that is controlled by Iran." And Russia doesn't have the money.In other words, the West did not get what it wanted in Syria (the complete destruction of the Syrian government and the subsequent breaking up of the country) but it did manage to significantly weaken it. Thus, the war was not totally lost by the West since it did manage to snag a major consolation prize. Keep in mind, “federalization” still seems to be on the table as “Plan B.” However, even in the event that “federalization” fails, a major goal has already been accomplished.
While Syria's rebel groups are down, they are not yet out. They have years of combat experience, and several have a jihadist outlook that scorns surrender or compromise. Even as their control of territory shrinks, a return to guerrilla warfare beckons.
The regime now controls well over half of Syria but almost all of the border with Turkey is still beyond its reach. Assad is propped up by troops and militia from four countries; those of a fifth (Turkey) are cutting a swath across parts of northern Syria. Above all, seven years of conflict have produced a toxic legacy of extremism, distrust and abject poverty.
The United States might still arm the opposition even knowing they will probably never have sufficient power, on their own, to dislodge the Asad network. Washington might choose to do so simply in the belief that at least providing an oppressed people with some ability to resist their oppressors is better than doing nothing at all, even if the support provided has little chance of turning defeat into victory.Thus, according to the influential Brookings Institution, official US policy is to “bleed” Syria, weakening it with warfare that, apparently, is slated to continue for as long as possible. The paper itself is an acknowledgement that the U.S. involvement in Syria has nothing to do with fighting terrorism (also evidenced by the fact that the U.S. created, organized, armed, funded, and directed terrorists in Syria from the very beginning) but with “keeping a regional adversary weak.”
Alternatively, the United States might calculate that it is still worthwhile to pin down the Asad regime and bleed it, keeping a regional adversary weak, while avoiding the costs of direct intervention.
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