US Policy in Syria to ‘Maintain Functions of the State’?

John Glaser, January 14, 2013

In Friday’s Washington Post, David Ignatius described “an intelligence report provided to the State Department last week by Syrian sources working with the Free Syrian Army (FSA),” which describes Syria’s rebel opposition as “disorganized fighters, greedy arms peddlers and profiteering warlords.”

“There are hundreds of small groups (10-20 fighters) spread all over the area of Aleppo,” notes the bleak assessment given to the State Department. “The FSA has [been] transformed into disorganized rebel groups, infiltrated by large numbers of criminals. All our efforts with MCs [military councils] were abolished. .?.?. Warlords are a reality on the ground now. .?.?. A [failed] state is the most likely outcome of the current condition, unless adjustment [is] done.”

The battles in the north these days are mostly for the spoils of war, argues the Syrian assessment. “Rebel violations are becoming a normal daily phenomenon, especially against civilians, including looting public and private factories, storage places, houses and cars.”

What’s important to note here is that the report from Free Syrian Army sources is not describing the most extremist, terrorist groups that have been a part of the rebel fighters for the bulk of the civil war. Nay, it is describing the types of groups Washington has attempted to portray as worthy of Western aid.

So while US allies Saudi Arabia and Qatar actively fund the terrorist groups in Syria, Washington is aiding the rag-tag rebel bands of criminals.

US policy does seem to be shifting, apparently in recognition of the kinds of realities the FSA-State Department report explains. Focus has been adjusted to the Syrian National Coalition, basically an exile group organized by the US that doesn’t have strong roots inside the country. There little evidence the Syrian people accept it. But there is strong evidence it has been vehemently rejected by the armed rebel groups fighting the Assad regime.

According to the State Department’s spokesperson Victoria Nuland, the US aim is to use the coalition to “maintain the functions of the state.” In other words, to get rid of Assad, but keep the regime. You know, for the sake of freedom and democracy.




32 Responses to “US Policy in Syria to ‘Maintain Functions of the State’?”

  1. At least we can be confident that Obama's policymakers learned the lessons from the debacle in Libya.

  2. Yes, the US wants to keep the regime that has protected Israel's border for decades – well done for spotting it, it only took you two years (during which you've consistently smeared Syrians as extremists and allies of Washington to justify your shameful and contemptible indifference towards the Assad regime's slaughter of them).

    While ''anti-zionists'' like those of the antiwar movement bleat about Islamists (sounding just like Mark Regev during 'Operation Cast Lead') and bend over backwards to make any excuse for the regime that's done more for Israel than Netanyahu, Israel is shitting its collective pants about losing Assad's regime, to the point of building a large fence along its border with Syria just in case he loses, and the only reason that your government will go into Syria is to ''control' those nasty radical Muslims, the ones you (just like your government) have been screeching about – does it sound familiar to you yet? By the way, 30 percent of Israel's water supply is in the Occupied Golan – the one that Assad has so obediently protected for Tel Aviv.

    One thing we have learnt during the Syrian revolution – Western ''radical'' activists will never help with Palestinian or any other Arabs' liberation, because the vast majority of them like seeing Arabs as picturesque victims, noble but stupid savages incapable of action without Western backing/encouragement (because Arabs can't act without Westerners telling us what to do, obviously) – when Arabs do fight back against tyranny suddenly you all sound like GW Bush/Netanyahu, ranting about Salafism, Wahhabism and other words you have no clue about the meaning of and smearing all Sunni Muslims as extremist – just like your governments.

  3. To this lay reader, it appears that if the U.S. get smart and stops supplying, and coordinating and assisting this chaos and devastation, the Syrian government will eventually prevail and the jihadists and their special ops advisors will be slowly neutralized and defeated. This has never been a war of liberation, it has always been an invasion fueled by our COIN special ops and special ops contractors, with the jihadists who were originally able to feed off of the dissatisfaction of the Sunni population in the region of Homs and Hama but are now losing the hearts and minds of the population, and our reasons have always been geopolitical and resource related. Why could we have not waited until the completion of Constitutional reform in Syria, and limited our demands to full and free elections? That could have ensured a truly democratic process. Many in Syria are now willing to live under a police state if that will mean security, stability and survival. This didn’t have to be the choice, but our flawed Middle East policies have made it so.

  4. Which describes Syria’s rebel opposition as “disorganized fighters, greedy arms peddlers and profiteering warlords.”

  5. [...] US Policy in Syria to ‘Maintain Functions of the State’? [...]

  6. To this lay reader, it appears that if the U.S. get smart and stops supplying, and coordinating and assisting this chaos and devastation, the Syrian government will eventually prevail and the jihadists and their special ops advisors will be slowly neutralized and defeated. This has never been a war of liberation, it has always been an invasion fueled by our COIN special ops and special ops contractors, with the jihadists who were originally able to feed off of the dissatisfaction of the Sunni population in the region of Homs and Hama but are now losing the hearts and minds of the population, and our reasons have always been geopolitical and resource related. Why could we have not waited until the completion of Constitutional reform in Syria, and limited our demands to full and free elections? That could have ensured a truly democratic process. Many in Syria are now willing to live under a police state if that will mean security, stability and survival. This didn't have to be the choice, but our flawed Middle East policies have made it so.

  7. If it smells like hasbara, looks like hasbara, ……
    http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/news/israel-

  8. Maybe it is hasbara, or maybe its just someone making a good point.

    The presence of Islamists in the opposition isn't seen as a valid reason to support US-backed regimes in Egypt, Tunisia, Yemen in the name of "stability." Nor is it seen as a valid reason to drone-attack the Pashtu in Pakistan, or Al-Shabab in Somalia, or to support Israel against Hamas or Hezbollah.

    Yet as soon as an anti-US regime is threatened by a Sunni uprising in Syria, all of a sudden the same people are borrowing US rhetoric and can't stop talking about dangerous Islamists and the need for "stability" lest these crazy muzzies come to power.

  9. Better yet, what about the Islamist radicals who fought against the US occupation in Iraq, or the Taliban currently fighting the US in Afghanistan.

    Are those nasty Islamists cause for throwing the "resistance" under the bus? Hell no – people on this site can't stop cheering on the local jihadi nationalists as they rise up against foreign occupation and US-backed "puppets." The fact that its ruthless Islamist cut-throats doing the fighting is irrelevant.

    Yet the rules suddenly change for Syrians if they rise up against a 40-year police state. All of a sudden Islamists are to be feared.

    It's every bit as hypocritical as US policy – good jihadis, bad jihadis, good dictatorships, bad dictatorships.

  10. [...] SOURCE: ANTIWAR [...]

  11. Focus has been adjusted to the Syrian National Coalition, basically an exile group organized by the US that doesn’t have strong roots inside the country.

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