The Syrian episode of the Arab Spring seems to be stagnating in a horribly violent phase. The majority of protesters have remained true to non-violence, only to see continued repression and killing by the Assad regime (somewhere around 2,700 killed.) Some have turned to violent revolution based on the Libyan experience, though this number is reportedly in the minority. Internationally, western countries have tried and failed to pass a watered-down resolution at the United Nations, leading many to contemplate the possibility of establishing a no-fly zone over Syria. … More Syria’s Civil War?
Some suggested reading for 9/13: A “Humanitarian War” on Syria? Military Escalation. Towards a Broader Middle East-Central Asian War? – Global Research Kremlin firmly opposes UN sanctions on Syria – Washington Examiner In Syria: 2,600 Dead So Far, UN Official Says – Boise State Public Radio Has the Libyan Insurgency Begun? – Wired Danger Room Libya’s new harvest: the … More NFAM Reading List 9/13/2011
My reaction to the attack on the Israeli embassy was pretty straight forward: the refusal of SCAF to protect the embassy was unforgivable and a poor attempt to deflect the council’s own shortcomings, but the anger that fueled the attack was certainly provoked in part by the murder of five Egyptian police by Israel – … More On the Attack on the Israeli Embassy in Cairo, Part II
Last week, as the Israeli government was building a giant wall surrounding the Israeli embassy in Cairo, I opined that the wall should not be seen as a necessity because of anti-Semitism or a rejection of Israel, but rather as a reflection of the reality Israel has created for itself. Killing nine Turkish (and American) … More On The Attack on the Israeli Embassy in Cairo
After six months of nonviolent protests have resulted in thousands of dead and injured civilians and have not produced any real reforms by the Syrian regime, some are calling for a move towards an armed uprising styled after the Libyan civil war. There are rumors of arms being smuggled into the country from neighboring Iraq … More Will Syrian Protests Turn Violent?
After Erdogan made a grand speech about rethinking Turkish-Israeli ties, Erdogan officially lowered diplomatic relations and suspended all military ties with Israel last night and this morning. Turkey, still rightfully upset with Israel, has decided to put some action behind their words and do this move. But what does the move intend to do? Is … More Implications of Turkey Cutting Military Ties with Israel on a Larger Scale
From Issandr El Amrani: First there was the West Bank wall, then the Gaza wall, then the Israeli-Egyptian wall in Sinai — and now the Egyptian government is building a wall outside the Israeli embassy in Cairo to protect it from protests. It may be a necessary thing — all countries have a responsibility … More Massive Cement Walls Make Good Neighbors!
I have repeatedly said that the intervention in Libya would not scare other despotic rulers into treating protests peacefully and would actually demonstrate the inability of the west to intervene elsewhere (see here and, most recently, the comment section here.) Not only did Libya demonstrate hoe intervention can be dragged out – “Days not weeks” … More In Case Anyone Still Thinks Libya is the Beginning
Apparently George Grant is not the only one who thought that the performance of of a handful of powerful militaries working under the guise of NATO is proof that the transatlantic alliance is still healthy. David Abshire, the U.S. permanent representative to NATO from 1983-1987, writes that the speed with which NATO acted in Libya, as compared to … More Proof That NATO is Relevant. And Irrelevant, Part II
Clearly NATO played a major role in the ability of the rebel forces to bring down Qaddafi. Though the TNC deserves credit for its efforts on the ground – particularly the apparent coordination between the TNC command in Benghazi and the sleeper rebel cells in Tripoli – the Libyan uprising would have been much shorter and … More Proof That NATO is Still Relevant. And Also Irrelevant.