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MENA Mashup: Brent Scowcroft, Jabhat Al-Nusrah, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, and, Turkey

As former NSC Chief(under GHWB), Brent Scowcroft, notes…

If al-Assad left tomorrow, it would not be all peace and quiet”

…Americans think “instinctively” they ought help put an end to the civil war, Mr. Scowcroft said in a video interview on… But, he added, “I don’t see how we can help. If we actively participate, as many say, in Syria, then we’re going to own Syria. And we don’t know how to solve the Syrian problem.” Asked whether he is advocating arming rebels or setting up a no-fly zone, Mr. Scowcroft replied, “No, I’m not. This is a very difficult situation. If (Syrian President Bashar al-Assad) left tomorrow, it would not be all peace and quiet.”

Instead, he endorsed an effort by Secretary of State John Kerry to work with Moscow, an ally of and arms supplier to the Syrian government, to work out an end to the violence…

And, truly, most Syrians just want a cease-fire, period…

Syrian refugees in Jordan unmoved by peace bid

…“To be honest, we’re fed up with these conferences, there have been many … without results. We want a radical solution,” says Saleh, a laborer from Syria’s southern Deraa province.

The efforts by Washington and Moscow to organize a peace conference next month mean little to the 120,000 residents of the dusty camp, where daytime temperatures hover around 40 degrees Celsius.

“We either want to go back or to know what is going to happen to us, we’ve been waiting for so long,” Saleh adds…
Fatigue is etched on the faces of the residents, particularly when journalists ask about the possibility of a conference to discuss a political solution to the conflict which has left more than 94,000 dead since March 2011.

“Why another conference? To agree deals that ignore the blood that is shed by the children? We have no hope for anything,” says Adel, a former car dealer who lost everything when he left Deraa.

For most of the camp’s residents, peace remains nothing more than a dream, and the overriding sentiment is one of abandonment by the international community…

“If they had wanted to do something, they would have done it from the beginning,” says Aziz, another resident…

Now, seriously, Jabhat al-Nusra has no intentions for any sort of Political and/or Religious Resolution…

How has Jabhat al-Nusra become so powerful?

The reason is the weakening of the other groups. Jabhat al-Nusra gets the advantage because of our ideology. We are not just rebels; we are doing something we believe in. We are not just fighting against tyranny; Bashar Assad is only part of our fight. The other groups are only a reaction to the regime, whereas we are fighting for a vision.

What is that vision?

We are fighting to apply what Allah said to the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him. We are fighting so people don’t look to other people but only to Allah. We don’t believe in complete freedom: it is restricted by Allah’s laws. Allah created us and he knows what is best for us.

What future do you see for Syria—or do you even see a Syria in the future?

We want the future that Islam commands. Not a country with borders but an umma [worldwide Islamic community of believers] of all the Muslim people. All Muslims should be united.

Syria has long been known for its sectarian diversity. How do you view the other sects?

The other sects are protected by the Islamic state. Muhammad, peace be upon him, had a Jewish neighbour, for example, and he was always good to him. But the power and authority must be with the believers [Sunnis], not the unbelievers.

What about other Sunnis who are more moderate than you?

We will apply sharia law to them.

Many, maybe most, Syrians do not share your views. Do you care?

It would be great if the Syrians were with us but the kuffar are not important. Abraham and Sarah were facing all the infidels, for example, but they were doing the right thing. The number with us doesn’t matter…

If anyone still harbors any doubts about Jabhat Al Nusrah… Despite word of split over al Qaida, Nusra Front still key in Syria fighting…

So, just shut up already and pass us the damn ammo…

I’m in shock, I’m embarrassed to go back to my men empty-handed…”

…Some field commanders expected a working plan to come out of the meeting, or tangible support in the form of money or weapons they could return to Syria with. The only support that was offered – 300,000 bullets, an undisclosed number of rocket-propelled grenades and tank shells – was earmarked for the raging battle in the rebel-held city of Qusayr, near the Lebanese border, where government troops backed by fighters from Lebanon’s Shi’ite militia Hizballah were battling to wrest control of the strategically important city.

The participants in the meeting were also reportedly given $5,000 to cover their expenses, much to the chagrin of several of them who said while they appreciated the Saudis covering their costs they had more urgent uses for the donated funds, including medical care for their wounded — and weapons.“I’m in shock, I’m embarrassed to go back to my men empty-handed,” said one. “I need ammunition. It’s always promises, promises, but this time I was hoping for something more from the Saudis. Sometimes the Qataris offer you support immediately“…

Now, to be sure the Neo/Ziocons are screeching for direct action… Gen. Keane: Take Out Assad’s Airfields… And, from AEI’s public blog, Paul Wolfowitz, the least credible voice on the planet, had to open his foul trap… Obama’s Syria fantasy…!

Interestingly, tho… Senior officials’ chatter on Syria proves that Israel is running scared…

Within the space of 48 hours, much of Israel’s military and political leadership spoke about the Syrian civil war – but there’s still no coherent government policy…


Honestly, while everybody is fretting about the potential spillover, across all of Syria’s borders, it’s actually happened… US signals alarm over Syrian conflict destabilizing Lebanon…

…The United States warned Friday that Lebanon’s stability was at risk from the Syrian conflict that has spawned clashes in Lebanon, and condemned the Lebanese militia Hezbollah for sending fighters into Syria, dpa reported.

The mounting deaths in clashes in Lebanon’s port city of Tripoli were symptoms of the broader threat to the country from the Syria conflict, State Department spokesman Patrick Ventrell said.

He noted the death toll in the Tripoli clashes had risen to at least 23 in fighting between supporters and opponents of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

The deaths “constitute a stark reminder that the conflict in Syria poses an increasingly dangerous threat to Lebanon’s stability and security,” Ventrell said.

The clashes, which broke out Sunday, saw the use of mortar shells. Schools and most businesses were closed all week.

“Hezbollah leaders’ decision to escalate the group’s role in the fighting in Syria violates and undermines Lebanon’s dissociation policy and risks dragging Lebanon into a foreign conflict, to the detriment of the interests of the Lebanese people,” Ventrell said…

On the Northern borders of Syria… Turkey: Tension Between Government and Opposition Heats Up over Syria Policy

…Erdogan’s accusations against the CHP may be just another round in the slugfest between the AKP and the CHP, but they also tell us the election season in Turkey has officially begun. The next two years will see local, national and presidential elections in Turkey and the parties are already jockeying for position, with Syria clearly emerging as a major wedge issue. In the wake of the Reyhanli bombings, which left many Turks wondering if Ankara’s Syria policy is dangerously drawing Turkey into the Syria quagmire, the Syrian issue has become a domestic political liability for the AKP. That said, The CHP, as its March visit with Assad and Kilicdaroglu’s off-base comparison of Erdogan and Assad shows, has yet to figure out what it means to have a coherent policy regarding Syria or how to use the AKP’s own failures regarding Syria to its advantage.

There have been recent warnings that the conflict in Syria could soon spill over into Turkey. As the fight between Erdogan and Kilicdaroglu show, in the political sphere, it already has…

Hello peeps…! It’s already a regional Clusterfuck conflagration…!


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