By Waiel Awwad
The attack in Nairobi by Al Qaeda was a grim reminder of the danger from the terrorist organization. All eyes were staring at the development there while ignoring the Syrian shores where Al Qaeda is nourished, equipped and trained to take on the government along with 100,000 mercenaries from 83 nationalities, according to the latest issue of Jane’s Weekly.
This includes 8,000 Saudi, 2,500 Sudanese, 3,000 Egyptian, 4,000 Tunisian, 6,000 Libyan, 2,000 Moroccan and 350 Somali terrorists, to name a few.
The world is relieved from an imminent American attack on Syria, but the CIA did not waste too much time in supplying “non-lethal weapons” to the “good rebels”, knowing that it is difficult to defeat the strong Syrian Army. The air defense system is not yet destroyed despite the internal strife for more than 30 months.
The intention behind the crisis was to dismantle Syria`s deterrence without raising a finger about Israel`s nuclear, chemical and biological arsenal. The tension in the Mediterranean remains high with US and French warships kept in readiness to attack Syria and keeping the diplomatic pressure to sabotage the deal brokered by Moscow on the elimination of Syria`s chemical weapons.
Syrian forces are still battling armed groups in many parts of the country in a systematic manner while its adversaries are keeping the supply line and moneybags pouring in to sabotage the regime.
The bloodshed continues and has left more than 140,000 citizens dead so far, two million plus refugees and more than five million internally displaced.
Making a case for intervention against Syria was plotted from 2007, according to retired US General Wesley Clark who spoke clearly about the US intention to occupy seven countries: Libya, Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen, Syria, Lebanon and Iran.
If we correlate the onset of the Arab Spring with the collapse of the American economy, then there is no doubt that the uprising in the entire Arab world is a stage-managed protest to tell the world that the Arab world is striving for democracy and wanted to end half a century of dictatorial regimes. A legitimate claim if it was true, but the outcome proved many wrongs about the alternative to those regimes that were replaced by hard-core radical Islamists who created more havoc and sectarian violence, killing more people than those regimes did in the last 50 years.
The idea of promoting political Islam was meticulously planned to ensure in-fighting among different groups, ethnic or religious, because by doing so, the regions will be unstable and anarchy will prevail – which will set the stage for foreign intervention under a new pretext.
What the US is doing in the Middle East:
* Double standards: Fighting Al Qaeda in Mali, Somalia and Kenya, while supporting it in Syria.
* France the new dancer to American drums: Supporting the Muslim Brotherhood in Syria, fighting it in Egypt.
* Nourishing Extremism and Radicalism
* Making a case for military intervention
* New ground for testing new missiles.
* Removal of President Bashar Al Assad.
* Changing the trajectory of the war in Syria in favor of Al-Nusra and its wings so that the country heads into chaos and massacre against minorities with the growing influence of Al Qaeda. Syria will become the new hub for terrorism; this will prompt the international community to support France and the US in occupying Syria. This will be a repeat of a mandate a century ago that divided Syria and led to the exodus of its inhabitants.
* Prolongation of the civil war to ensure division of Syria.
What is the endgame? Still a question mark but may be postponed till Syria is disarmed of its deterrence under UN supervision and then taking it on like Iraq and Libya.
There will be no peace in the Middle East without settling the Palestinian cause, ending Israeli occupation and returning Golan to Syria, Lebanese Shebaa farms and the birth of Palestine state side-by- side with Israel.
US foreign policy in the region should not be Israeli-centric and see that its real interests lie in a stable and prosperous region and not by promoting radicalism and extremism.
There is no endgame as long as controlling resources and maintaining hegemony by warmongering nations are based on short roads through wars.
* Dr Waiel Awwad is a veteran Arab journalist and senior international correspondent based in South Asia since 1979. The views expressed by him are personal