The Mideastwire Blog

Excerpts from the Arab and Iranian Media & Analysis of US Policy in the Region

Young’s Syrian Truisms

Michael Young, here, provides the standard Neo-LiberalCon line on Syria:

“…Assad’s legitimacy has reached an end. It’s about time that Washington accept these simple propositions and reshape its attitude toward Syria accordingly. Bashar is not about to do what Washington, deep down, pines for him to do: He won’t reform, he won’t break with Iran, he won’t engage seriously in peace negotiations with Israel, and he won’t halt his interference in Lebanon.”

–While Assad NOT engaging in peace negotiations NOW may be a worthwhile proposition to explore (and is indeed likely), Young offers no analysis here on this critical point. Instead, his effort, as in the past, is to obscure recent history and recast Syria as NEVER, nay GENETICALLY, incapable of “making peace” with Israel. This, of course, has been a terribly damaging sleight of hand polemic that has undermined US interests at least since March 2000 when Syria was ready to make peace but Ehud Barak was not willing to go the last 100 meters of shoreline around Tiberius (according to top Israelis).

Young would also like us to forget the 2008 Turkey brokered negotiations which largely fell apart as a result of Israeli actions (which seriously miffed the Turks and began the denouement in some respects).

Finally – Young is characteristically unclear about what POLICIES he actually favors for Obama going forward: He says at one point, “..Understandably, no one is seriously contemplating a scheme for the U.S. and European states to mount a military campaign to protect the Syrian population..”

But then he goes on to suggest that sanctions are too wimpy…. So what are we left with? Especially considering Young is a mostly uncritical supporter of armed interventions by Western powers a la the Iraq War and his desire that the Bush admin had used a far harder stick to preserve what turned into the WikiLeaks Revolution in Lebanon.

Murkily, he closes by saying: “…Obama should place the U.S. on the right side of the fight against the Assads and their maintenance in power, while also helping to ease Syria toward a smooth democratic transition. This is not about regime change in Syria; the Syrian regime has already ascertained that change is obligatory. It’s about the U.S. accepting that change is inevitable and ensuring that it can become useful for whatever occurs next…”

— But Michael, given your prior valorazations of disastrous armed interventions, one is only left to think that you are merely suggesting another round of force… just one which swoops down at the right moment of future weakness? If not, then what separates your prescriptions from those which you deride as ineffective, wimpy and a disservice to brave Syrians?


Written by nickbiddlenoe

April 28, 2011 at 12:29 pm

Posted in ANALYSIS

%d bloggers like this: