Syria represents one of many instances in the Middle East in which free nations confront hostile governments and hostile factions that are both armed with lethal weapons, which are transportable throughout the region. Whatsmore, around the edges are nations, governments, and people whose hostility remains more latent, but no less seething, i.e., Russia and China.
The bundle of hostility that is the Middle East is a keg of explosive chemistry that can ruin humanity. How many ways can this explosive bundle ignite? Can disaster be kept in the bottle? How can it be extinguished?
America and its President and Congress appear to be at a tactical moment, pondering how to address Bashar al Assad’s government and its apparent use of chemical weapons. Then, again, the rebels too likely used chemical weapons.
The point is that nation states and rogue elements have access to chemical and biological weapons that are declared illegal by 98% of the world. What is to be done about that circumstance?
Another point is that among the Middle East and other nation states comprising the explosive bundle are those in possession of nuclear weapons, and who are developing nuclear weapons, or otherwise possess nuclear materials that could be used for hostile purposes, i.e., Pakistan, North Korea, and Iran.
What is fueling global volatility? Consider this list:
1. Competition for scarce and limited resources
2. Economic disparity
3. Ideological disparity
4. Fight by powerful to keep control
5. Unsustainable economies
6. Wanting for identity
7. Absence of democratic and individual freedom
World powers need to step back to address the context in which we are living on this very small planet. As I wrote yesterday, the Syrian situation is an instance, and a symptom of a larger problem. Swatting at it with tactical strikes will not make the problem go away.
“What the Syrian strategy will not do:
- Will not rally the population toward democracy
- Will not end civil war
What it will do:
- Will make matters worse with regard to Russia and China relationships
- Will strengthen al Qaeda in Syria and elsewhere
- Will make Assad more recalcitrant
- Will draw in Iran”