The Mideastwire Blog

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

Almost all the myths of the past 2.5 years of the war in Syria have now fallen – so you have a good idea about the response to the US-led attack

In the beginning, despite warnings from many of us actually in the Middle East and closer to the actors involved, it was said that:

1) Russia would not really back Assad – that myth fell, as expected.

2) That Hizbullah would not get involved – that myth fell over time, as the existential nature of this conflict was revealed, as expected. I remember being chided on this at my LSE talk and by leading oppositionists last fall!

Listen to the podcast debate here:

3) That Hizbullah was a paper tiger – that myth fell in Qusayr – although one could only have looked at the July 2006 War to know this since a force – hizbullah – essentially beat one of the strongest army in the world – Israel – to a standstill.

4) That Assad would not go to extreme levels of violence to protect the regime – anyone who lived in syria and knew the regime – and hizbullah knew this VERY well – knows how cruel the regime has always been.

5) That Assad would fall quickly or at some reasonable point – this myth fell as people realized that the Resistance Axis architecture is deep and enduring and will not fall easily – even via decapitation as per the july 2012 assassinations.

6) That Syria did not have WMDS – I remember being chided on this at a talk in paris at  AUP.

7) That the “samson” option was never possible – and that Assad or others would never introduce such weapons in the field… well they got introduced as expected when the whole edifice of everyone fighting in syria is degrading into hell.

8) That the US and allies would rapidly intervene – well it took some prodding, BUT the US congress may yet stand in the way….

9) That violent jihadists would not control the field – that myth is over

10) And my favorite – that if we had only attacked assad earlier, the outcome would have been just great – no jihadists, the regime falls, a nice sunni replaces him, iran and hizbullah are screwed, israel is unscathed and liberal feminists rule in Damascus, although they still believe in an acceptable form of “market socialism.”

BUT THE BEST MYTH has yet to fall – WHAT WILL HIZBULLAH AND IRAN DO in response to a strike?

The myth circulating now is the SAME, essential root from all the above: they are paper tigers and its better to act decisively and with great force and everything will be ok… or at least better than it is now.

Then you read… you talk to the actors, reflect on conversations with the actors and read what THEY have said and are saying. (translated by

These bits of the information war are NOT likely to be mere posturing.

The likely response is from WITHIN SYRIAN lands into Israel – and Israel will be forced to decide on escalation and escalation into Lebanon also.

This will be a fatal mistake – but the Israelis are likely to take the step and the Amerians are unwittingly or not paving the way for this liklihood.

A last Myth that will probably fall in this scene – That israel is well prepared in terms of missile defence and the homefront to adequately withstand the escalation.


Written by nickbiddlenoe

September 3, 2013 at 1:48 am

Posted in Uncategorized

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