Cameroon Voice, Cameroon
The New Times Beats the Drum
for War in Syria
By Patrick Wolf
Translated By Jiyoung Han
28 April 2012
Edited by Mark DeLucas
Cameroon - Cameroon Voice - Original Article (French)
In a cynical and deceptive editorial published last Saturday, the New York Times intensified its campaign in favor of political subversion and American military action against Syria, all the while urging Washington to adopt a more aggressive attitude toward Russia and China.
Titled “Assad’s Lies,” the editorial itself is a jumble of lies. The paper re-assumes the role that it played during the period before the U.S. invasion of Iraq, when it spread the Bush government’s lies about the supposed Iraqi weapons of mass destruction as a means to neutralize strong popular opposition against the war.
The Times accuses Assad of “cruelty and blindness,” which hardly makes him a unique figure in the region. Practically every U.S. ally and client nation in the Middle East — Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, the Egyptian military dictatorship, the Netanyahu government in Israel — bears these characteristics. This week, for example, we saw the violent repression of anti-government protests in Bahrain and Tunisia, both [ruled by] conservative regimes tightly linked to the U.S. There were even aggressive threats from the Israelis of a unilateral attack against Iran, an action that would represent a war crime of monstrous proportions.
The Times editorial maintained a generally distressed tone, deploring the “bloodbath” in Syria and the danger of a “wider war” — this despite the fact that the politics advocated by the paper, and practiced by the Obama administration, have led inexorably to these two consequences. The Times would like for its readers to forget the fact that the U.S. government arms the opposition in Syria both directly and indirectly, by deploying both special forces and proxies like Qatar or Saudi Arabia. And where does the danger of this “wider war” come from if not from an intervention led by the U.S. and aligned with the operation led last year against Libya? A besieged Assad would hardly be able to invade one of his neighbors.
The most sinister of all is that the editorial condemns Moscow and Beijing, vilifying Russia and China for playing a “pointless geopolitical game,” while presenting U.S. motives in the Syrian crisis as humanitarian — even altruistic.
The Times allows the assumption that the U.S. is not pursuing any definite interests; yet for over a decade Washington has been pursuing its geopolitical game by means of war. Washington has one precise goal: to affirm American hegemony over energy reserves in the Middle East and Central Asia at the expense of its geopolitical adversaries. The fact that Russia and China are opposed to American objectives is far from “pointless.”
The current campaign for regime change in Syria represents yet another step in this escalation of military aggression. The mouthpieces of American imperialism have admitted that the motive of attacking the Bashar al Assad regime in Damascus does not stem from a common concern about the fate of the Syrian people, but from the wish to further isolate Iran by overturning its sole ally in the Arab world.
The Times editorial maintains that “Russia sells arms to Syria and uses its Mediterranean port of Tartus. And after the events in Libya, both Russia and China seem determined to deny the West another 'win,' so they keep hanging on to Mr. Assad.” After having derided this attitude as incomprehensible, the editorial advises the Obama administration to “push Moscow and Beijing to cut their losses.”
The political line of the Times — to pressure China and Russia into abandoning their opposition to intensifying economic sanctions and other measures designed to harm Assad — leads directly to a military intervention, despite the editorial’s denial of supporting a “new war,” as in Libya.
These dangers are underlined by an editorial published last Sunday in the Washington Post, another influential American paper that urged the Obama administration to abandon its incompetent diplomacy in favor of immediate military action. The Post condemns all types of diplomacy as a waste of time, emphasizing that the American objective of overthrowing Assad is incompatible with wanting to give the impression of finding a negotiated solution in the Syrian crisis — that is, waiting for the Syrian regime to destroy itself.
The Times expresses skepticism — for the time being — about measures like the creation of “humanitarian corridors” to reach regions held by the Syrian rebels. By invoking the willingness of the NATO alliance to defend Turkey against so-called Syrian commando operations near the two countries’ borders, the Post visibly expresses enthusiasm for measures that “could be accomplished with a modest military force and could cause the regime to collapse.”
The two editorials show the composition of forces at the heart of the American elite: a faction openly urging war, considering it to be the only means of securing U.S. interests, and a superficially less-bellicose wing evolving slowly in the same direction, though proclaiming its intentions to be “peaceful” and “humanitarian.”
The Obama government and its allies among the imperialist European powers are progressing toward military action against Syria. At a press conference last Saturday, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urged the UN Security Council to make a resolution by invoking Chapter 7 of the UN Charter, the same section that provided the basis of the UN resolution that approved the U.S. and NATO attack against Libya.
French president Nicolas Sarkozy has gone even further by openly comparing the actions of the Syrian army in Homs to the threats made by Gadhafi against Benghazi, which provided the pretext not only for the UN Security Council resolution, but also for the initial U.S. and NATO airstrikes against Libya. Sarkozy urged the establishment of humanitarian corridors so that an opposition could exist in Syria. In other words, the U.S. and the European powers should use military intervention to create a zone in which Assad’s armed adversaries can be formed and equipped to launch attacks, conforming to the national council’s model of Libyan transition.
The working class of the U.S. and of the world must oppose all measures to sabotage and attack Syria, an oppressed country that has long been the target of economic sanctions and military aggression by imperialist powers and their proxies like the state of Israel. Syria is only the first step toward an even more devastating war against Iran, which American imperialism has currently targeted as the principal obstacle to its desired control of the petroleum-rich regions of the Persian Gulf and Central Asia.
Even more worrisome, the augmenting tensions between the bloc led by the U.S. and the tacit alliance between Russia and China raise the probability of a war between nuclear powers and thus of unimaginable consequences.
CLICK HERE FOR