Regardless of how tired, threadbare and discredited the entire “humanitarian war” meme is becoming, and no matter how transparent the agenda, the Guardian is continuing to push for a “humanitarian”, intervention in Syria.
Currently you can read Simon Jenkins wringing his hands and his conscience. He starts reasonably well, with a brief overview of the horrors inflicted by previous western attempts to bring peace to the world, which does at least acknowledge how cynically brutal we have been. But he betrays the agenda behind his avowed sense of outrage with a rather shocking u-turn in the final few paragraphs, in which he argues that since bombing doesn’t win wars, there really might be nothing else to do but get over all those silly non-interventionist scruples and get right behind a full scale invasion of Syria. Here are his words (emphasis ours)
“…If ever in the past quarter century there was a clear humanitarian case for intervening to pacify, reorder and restore good governance to a failed state, it must be in Syria. I still regard this as none of Britain’s business, which should be to help refugees. But if parliament were to decide otherwise, there is no other moral course but to insert ground troops. If winning is Cameron’s goal, he should put his army where his mouth is and pledge a massive British presence in a UN intervention force….”
Does Jenkins realise the west has already been “intervening” in Syria for at least the past three years, and this is the main reason the state is “failing”? Does he know anything of the claims the civil war is not a domestic protest movement gone rogue but a cynically organised foreign intervention?
Can he tell us what he means by ‘winning’ in this specific context?
Meanwhile, elsewhere at the Graun Natalie Nougayrede is begging Obama “not to play Putin’s game in Syria.” Because Putin isn’t to be trusted. Let’s allow Natalie to explain exactly why in her own unforgettable words:
“…But Putin’s intentions are best described by the man himself. In a recent interview he was clear about the kind of “political process” he has in mind: “Holding early parliamentary elections and establishing ties with the so-called healthy opposition, involving them in running the country” – all this “in agreement” with Assad.”
Elections? Power-sharing? Healthy opposition? What foolishness is this? But of course Natalie knows what this really means is “fake elections in a war torn country,” because Putin is playing the same game Kissinger played with the Khmer Rouge. This is a legitimate comparison you understand, and not some hysterically offensive bid to discredit by association. Assad is exactly like the Khmer Rouge. You heard it from Natalie.
Notably she doesn’t offer any specific alternatives to Putin’s crazy “democracy” fixation. What she does offer in abundance is scatter gun claims from the propaganda matrix. Everything is thrown in the mix here. Assad’s alleged “barrel bombs” of course get a mention, though the distortions and outright deceptions underpinning that narrative are not discussed. Assad being responsible for most civilian deaths is said as if it were a known fact and not merely an assertion, as is Assad’s army being “pumped up with new Russian weapons”(she links to an earlier Guardian article for “proof” of this, even though said article itself is reproducing nothing but hearsay, and contains a direct refutation by the Syrian ambassador to Moscow, who points out Russia has been supplying Syria with weapons quite openly for 40 years.)
All of this looks strained and frantic and hollow, because it is. The rationale behind western intervention has been discredited and exposed to the point where nothing honest can be said in its favour. While the US seems to be going for broke in the Middle east and worldwide, lies, smears and allusions are all the justification it has left. Like Jenkins, Natalie is asking us to believe diplomacy, negotiations and elections are just for tyrants and the Khmer Rouge, while illegally invading a sovereign country, supplanting and/or murdering its elected leader and killing thousands of innocent civilians in the process is the more ethical, democratic and freedom-loving thing to do.
But neither of them can quite bring themselves to say such a thing outloud.