By Christof Lehmann - EditorialEncirclement – One of the Russian preconditions for the re-unification of Eastern and Western Germany was, that NATO would not station any troops in Eastern Germany, any of the former Soviet Republics, and former Warsaw Treaty Member States. The agreement would have created important preconditions for a peaceful and balanced geopolitical development in Europe, the Middle East, and Asia Minor. After the discontinuation of the former USSR, Russia was led by a weak and unstable government led by Boris Yeltsin, who rather than seeking alliances with former Soviet Republics, based it´s power in strong economic, US, European, and Globalist players. The result was that Russian assets were moved off-shore and a severe destabilization of the Russian economy, which only began recovering during the Presidency of Vladimir Putin.
Russia and a cohort of former Soviet Republics were invited into NATO´s “Partnership for Peace” or “Individual or Special Partnership Programs” and a cohort of other(1) (2). With Russia ensnared in NATO´s programs and a weakened Russian economy, it became economically, politically as well as militarily difficult to resist NATO´s breeches of contracts, as well as a low intensity war directed against Russia from many of the former Soviet Republics and allies. Recalling discussions with Russian Diplomats in 1990 and 1991 in Moscow, the author remembers that even though there was wide-spread skepticism about US and European ambitions, the impression that all partners were working towards peace and cooperation was the most prevalent.
Encirclement, Terrorism, Subversion – This picture changed significantly with NATO´s war on Yugoslavia and the wide-spread use of NATO intelligence and NATO-backed terrorist and mercenary forces, including Al-Qaeda. (3) The first time use of NATO´s article five of it´s charter for attacking Afghanistan worsened the skepticism. (4) The European and US Support of Chechnyan Militants, as well as Insurgents in Dagestan, North Ossetia, Ingushetia, and Georgian militant nationalists claiming Ossetia made it clear that Russia was under assault by NATO backed Islamic Insurgents. (5) The breeches of contracts by enlarging NATO with the inclusion of Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Poland, the Ukraine, and the stationing of US troops in Georgia, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, effectively encircling Russia aggravated Russia`s suspicions against it`s “Partner for Peace”.. The encirclement was partly facilitated, partly followed by heavily US-backed “Color Revolutions or Flower Revolutions” (6) to install or stabilize US-friendly governments, oust pro-Russian governments, and ensure US-hegemony. This development was followed by the deployment of Air Forces with fighter jets along Russia´s European borders, and the recent stationing of missiles. The Russian Military, Russian Politicians and Diplomats perceive that NATO´s Missile “Shield” is aimed at “neutralizing Russia´s Strategic Deterrent”, and thus an act of aggression or at least in preparation of a plausible aggression against Russia.(7) The author has recently discussed the situation in the Middle East with a Russian Diplomat who stated that NATO most certainly no longer was a “Partner for Peace”, and that Russian military analysts consider the likelihood of a NATO attack on Russia within the decade for being overwhelming.
Speaking confidentially with Russian Diplomats it becomes evident that Russia today “is in a situation where it must assert it´s influence in the Wider Middle East and Asia Minor. Any further encroachment by NATO in Syria or Iran would not only be a serious departure from international obligations towards peace. Not to assert Russian influence with respect to Iran and Syria would implicitly be the neglect of Russia to assure it´s territorial integrity and the security of it´s citizens, while being confronted by a NATO that has the declared goal to attack and subdue Russia and China“. Analyzing documents such as US Military Base Structure Reports that provide a reasonably clear overview over US Bases and Deployments, and taking into consideration that Russia is convinced about NATO´s ambitions for global and full spectrum dominance, the 2008 BSR (8) can not be other than disturbing literature for the Russian General Staff.
In September 2011 the author received information from a high-ranking US-military source at Ft. Bragg, North Carolina, that the US and NATO had actively been preparing for, and had begun implementing a war on Syria, Hezbollah, and Iran.(9) The same military source has since drawn attention to the fact that the wars will be conducted with a significant use of Special Forces, and based on the US Special Forces Unconventional Warfare Manual TC 18-01. The document is a detailed revelation of the criminal nature of US Foreign Affairs Policy, and is explanatory for the development of the current situation in Syria. TC 18-01 was published in full, attached to an article on nsnbc in February 2012. (10)
The abuse of UNSC Resolution 1973-2011 on Libya, and the heavy NATO involvement in the attempted subversion of the Syrian government forced Russia to draw a clear line in the sand with respect to Syria. Stating that it would not tolerate another Libya Style intervention or unwarranted interference. Russia is making serious attempts to help the Syrian government and opposition to find a peaceful solution to what has slowly developed into a state of civil war. However, the Russian General Staff, Intelligence Services as well as the Russian Politicians, are well aware of the fact, that neither NATO, nor the NATO, Qatari, Saudi backed armed insurgents are interested in finding a peaceful solution.The question for NATO planners is no longer “if” but “how” to attack Syria and how to get away with while keeping Russia outside of the military equation. It is a high stakes gamble, with nothing less than the possibility of a regional war which could rapidly develop into a global war at stake.
How to get away with murder – Over 40.000 NATO backed armed insurgents massed in a military staging area in Jordan, along the Syrian border. Approximately 18.000 of these men are under the command of Libyan Al Qaeda commander and long-standing NATO ally Abdelhakim Belhadj. (11) Turkey, is hosting the “National Council of Syria” (NCS) which demands from “the International Community“ to be endorsed as the “sole representative of the people of Syria”. The NCS, backed by Turkey and NATO, is vehemently opposed to finding a peaceful, non-military solution to the crisis in Syria. Armed Muslim Brotherhood fighters are trained, housed, and organize armed aggressions against Syria from NATO bases in Turkey. Al Qaeda and other Islamic Jihadis from Iraq are massing at the Syrian border to Iraq. Saudi Arabia and Qatar demand that Jordan allows their military to use Jordan as a corridor for an attack on Syria which Jordan so far has “publicly” rejected. The public rejection however has very little credibility for three reasons. The Jordanian government would be very interested in ousting the Syrian Baath Party government. Old scores dating back as long as the “Black September” and Syrian military support of the PLO in Jordan against the Jordanian military are too tempting for not to be settled. Jordan is already hosting over 40.000 foreign fighters poised for battle with Syria and Turkey has opened a recruitment center and intelligence operations room in Jordan`s Capitol Amman. Finally, it would be a very incompetent military tactic to inform Syria about a probable military attack by it´s allies Qatar and Saudi Arabia via Jordan, as long as it is possible to attempt to soothe the Syrian General Staff into not paying too much attention to the risk of the attack.
The problems the US and NATO are facing are among other, how to get away with a step by step war while minimizing the likelihood of a Russian military intervention, how to oust the Syrian government without intervention by Russia, how to keep Iranian troops out of the Syrian equation, while attacking Syria, and how to find a later pretext for an aggression against Iran without Russian military intervention later.
On 26 February the people of Syria will hold a referendum about a draft Constitution. (12) A constitution which Preamble is a direct slap in the face of the new want to be colonial powers and their allies.(13) A massive turnout at the referendum, or massive popular support in favor of it, would not have much military significance; it would however, be an absolute domestic and international public relations disaster for the USA, NATO, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Jordan. Since a military attack on Syria will include a relatively large deployment of Qatari and Saudi troops, as well as a large deployment of NATO Special Forces, it will be important for NATO to deflect as much attention from Syria as possible during the critical phases of military operations. A US Military advisor for nsnbc suggested yesterday, that the ongoing Israeli strong-wording and threatening Iran most likely is a Mossad contribution to deflecting as much attention from Syria as possible.
As reported in a recent article by the author, a Palestinian Intelligence source in Turkey informed, that massive terrorist attacks are to be expected in Syria on the day of the referendum. These attacks will be followed by a massive attack, including the deployment of the fighters now stationed in Jordan, not later than 7 March. (ibid.) 40.000, even 50.000 troops are far from sufficient to seriously threaten the Syrian military. They are however sufficient to create so much chaos, that the fighting can be sold as “a massive popular uprising” in Western Main Stream Media”. The burden of proof that Syria is suffering a NATO attack would rest entirely on Syria and Russia, and without it, it will be politically extremely difficult for Russia to intervene.Russia could intervene indirectly by supporting Iran in doing so, without provoking a direct NATO-Russian confrontation.
The ongoing Israeli threats of an attack against Iran, and the sharp US debates about it may serve a triple purpose and may be significantly increased within the coming weeks. The strategy to focus all possible media attention on Iran and a possible war with Iran while actually waging a war against Syria. Sending a message to Iran that it should stay out of the war in Syria. Weakening Russia´s political strengths by discrediting it by association with Syria and Iran.The most important function of a massive and protracted threat against Iran is in other words to make it less likely that either Russia or Iran are getting directly involved while NATO, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia initiate their main assault on Syria.
Neither Russia nor Iran seem to have any interest in engaging them selves in what invariably would develop into a regional conflict, if not more. It may be tempting for them to avoid military involvement as long as NATO can maintain plausible deniability of direct military involvement. The decision would be disastrous for Syria. More over, it would be disastrous for Iran and Russia. In the final equation, backing off with respect to Syria will not contribute to stability in the region, but rather quicken and heighten the risk for a wider regional war. Syria, Russia and Iran are in a serious military dilemma.
The only player who is holding the “Joker” that could turn the game around seems to be China. It is the only player who could demand an US and NATO policy of non-interference, and demand that NATO calls back it´s bloodhounds. Back off or drown in worthless Dollar and Euro. China would most likely have the support of the BRIC and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization and a Cohort of non aligned countries. The question is, will it play the “Joker” and pay a heavy price for peace now, or does it count on defending itself later, while letting NATO get away with murder for the time being.
Dr. Christof Lehmann