by Robert Carbery
Yesterday, I wrote about the U.S. decision to shoot down a Syrian Air Force plane out of the sky after it attacked coalition-backed forces. The foreign policy decisions carried out by the U.S. military continue to confound and only fan the flames of conflict in the region. I concluded that “As we attack those who attack ISIS we are making a bad problem even worse.” It now appears we are doubling down on our idiotic strategy of regime change, involving ourselves in an increasingly hostile sectarian battle.
DollarCollapse.com posted a story showing just how chaotic things are in the Middle East right now. Wonder why the region is such a mess at this moment? Let’s review recent developments. There’s quite a bit to keep track of.
First, Russia warned the U.S. that it takes the destruction of its client’s military assets seriously after the Syrian plane went down over the weekend. Russia subsequently suspended the hot line Washington and Moscow have used to avoid collisions in Syrian airspace and threatened to target U.S. aircraft. Just yesterday, a Russian plane buzzed an American reconnaissance plane over the Black Sea, coming within five feet.
Iran has launched missiles into Syria targeting ISIS. Iran’s active military involvement in Syria is quite significant as it has been fighting via Lebanon’s Hezbollah and some of its Iranian Revolutionary Guard troops, but now the situation re: Assad seems to be escalating.
Iran and the U.S. trade substantial threats. U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson accused Iran of destabilizing the region and promised that the United States would support “those elements inside the Islamic Republic which would bring about peaceful government transition.” Iran called those remarks “unwise and clear meddling in Iran’s internal affairs.”
Saudi Arabia claimed to arrest members of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard who were attacking a Saudi offshore oil facility. One day later, Iran accused Saudi Arabian border guards of opening fire on Iranian fishermen in the area, killing one of them.
A U.S. aircraft shot down an armed Iranian drone over Syria, confirmed on Tuesday, that was advancing on coalition forces training in the area. The Sunni-Shia / Saudi-Iranian war has turned from cold to hot. From proxy war to outright battle. The two rival nations have grown tired of fighting through intermediaries and are ready to duke it out directly.
Wonder why all of this is occurring now? Is there another player in this convoluted conflict spanning the desert lands from Syria to Pakistan? There sure is…
Israel has been secretly funding Syrian rebels for years, further fanning the sectarian flames and actually coming down on the side of Saudi Arabia in the Syrian civil war for years.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Israel and Saudi Arabia have been aligned from the onset of the Syrian conflict, “with Israel supplying Syrian rebels near its border with cash as well as food, fuel and medical supplies for years, a secret engagement in the enemy country’s civil war aimed at carving out a buffer zone populated by friendly forces.” While this has been suspected for some time, we are now seeing concrete proof and confirmations of Israel’s active involvement in the seemingly endless civil war in its neighbor country.
Recently, Israeli air strikes lobbed over the border into Syrian territory have been to prevent weapons getting into the hands of Iranian-allied Hezbollah which has been fighting alongside the Assad government and who, like Iran, is wholly committed to the annihilation of the Jewish state.
Assad has claimed in the past that Israel supports rebel groups that the Syrian government labels as terrorists. These are likely the same groups that the U.S. coalition is now funding and arming to prolong the disastrous Syrian situation. We can now add Israel to the list of countries increasingly involved in the proxy wars underway in the Middle East. Like Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the U.S., Europe, Iran, Turkey, Russia, and China, Israel has jumped headfirst into this dangerous game, which can only end one way.
A brutal war will break out against regional powers such as Iran and Saudi Arabia. And others will be forced to choose sides. It is not going to be pretty.
Courtesy of the WSJ, here is a chronology of Israeli involvement in the Syrian proxy war (from the start of 2016 to today):
- 2016: Israel secretly sets up an army unit and budget to manage relationship with rebels and civilians on the Golan Heights.
- November 2016: An Israeli airstrike kills four Khalid ibn al-Walid militants in Syrian Golan after Israeli soldiers come under fire.
- March 2017: Israeli warplanes carry out airstrikes inside Syria, drawing fire from antiaircraft missiles in the most intense military exchange between the two countries since the start of the Syrian conflict.
- June 2017: Syrian rebels say they have been receiving cash from Israel for the past four years that they use to help pay salaries of fighters and buy ammunition and weapons.
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