Powered by WebAds

Friday, December 27, 2013

Middle East losers in 2013 all have one thing in common: Misplaced reliance on the US and Obama

Lee Smith names 2013's winners and losers in the Middle East. The losers all have one thing in common: They all relied on Barack Hussein Obama.

Of these, the year’s biggest losers were the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq, the Syrian rebels, and Israel. The MEK is the anti-Iranian regime resistance movement that the Clinton Administration listed as a foreign terrorist organization in 1997 to curry favor with the 1990s model of the moderate Iranian president, Mohammad Khatami. In the wake of the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq, the MEK complied with American requests to disarm, in exchange for which the Pentagon gave them protected-persons status. Nonetheless, starting in 2009 they came under repeated attacks from Iranian allies, including security forces affiliated with Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki.

U.S. officials agree that Iran was also responsible for the most recent attack at Camp Ashraf on Sept. 1 that killed 50 MEK members, with another seven taken hostage. The lesson is, when the United States tells you to put down your weapons and not to take matters into your own hands, don’t listen.
The Syrian rebels believed that for all the setbacks and casualties they suffered the last year, at least there was the possibility that the White House might make good on its stated policy of seeking the removal of Bashar al-Assad—if not by military means, then at least by diplomatic and political pressure. After all, how could Washington maintain its standing in the Middle East if its adversaries and allies came to believe that the Americans were bluffers?
What the Syrian opposition didn’t see was that America was no longer interested in its own prestige in the region; what interested American policymakers this past year was getting out of the Middle East. First, the White House failed to make good on delivery of arms promised in June. In September it backed off on striking Assad after the regime used chemical weapons, and crossed President Barack Obama’s famous “red line.” Instead of punishing Assad, it moved instead to close down avenues of rebel support from Turkey, Kuwait, Qatar and Saudi Arabia. Then the administration signaled that everyone will now just have to deal with Assad sticking around—because he is a good partner for containing Al Qaeda. The lesson? When the U.S. says it doesn’t bluff, don’t listen.
White House aides also reportedly came to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last fall in the middle of the 2012 presidential campaign and asked him not to take matters into his own hands and bomb Iran. It turns out, as the Associated Press reported this week, that in July 2012, Obama aide Jake Sullivan was already in the midst of secret talks with Tehran, which ultimately led to the interim agreement announced Nov. 24, which effectively insulates the Iranian nuclear program from any future Israeli attack. The lesson there is, when the United States says it has your back, don’t listen.
And please learn 2013's lessons Mr. Prime Minister because...
Failure to learn the lessons the White House taught the region this year means that, at best, you will become perennial losers, like the Palestinians—powerless to shape your own destiny and dependent on the largesse of an easily distracted international community. While turning Israel into a helpless ward of America’s strategic relationship with Iran was hardly what Bibi Netanyahu had in mind for 2013, things can also get worse. As in the case of the MEK and the Syrian rebels, relying on Washington can also mean being slaughtered by your enemies, after giving up the freedom to respond in kind.
Read the whole thing.

Labels: , , , , ,


At 2:10 AM, Blogger Sunlight said...

Well, Israel would look more like a "gamblin' man," rather than a victim "loser," if Lee Smith were to add a spreadsheet of the Green $lu$h and Big Data $lu$h... $$$BBBillions of US govt money that Israeli companies have accepted from the US govt. Do you think Lee Smith hasn't noticed it or doesn't know?? Can a decades-long Israel technology advocate still be "pro-Israel" while caterwauling about the damage caused by doing these deals with Obama, Clinton, etc.? QUIT. And tell the whole story... ugh.


Post a Comment

<< Home