Trump’s love for Syrians
Posted on April 9th, 2017
April 9, 2017, 9:46 pm
US President Donald Trump has, in a desperate bid to overcome domestic problems and rally support, emulated his predecessors such as Ronald Reagan, George Bush, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama. He has taken to military action overseas. He had a Syrian airfield bombed last week, claiming that President Bashar al-Assad had to face the consequences of chemical attacks on rebel forces. But, the whole world is aware that Trump is no friend of Syrians going through hell. His anti-Muslim travel ban has amply demonstrated that he does not care a damn about global humanitarian issues, especially the one in Syria.
As Russia pointed out at the UN Security Council meeting last week, the spirits of ISIS terrorists who have become a threat to the entire world were greatly raised by the US attack at issue. In a telephone conversation with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Saturday over the situation in Syria, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov pointed out that “an attack on a country whose government fights terrorism only plays into the hands of extremists, creates additional threats to regional and global security.”
Meanwhile, Trump’s air strikes have yielded the desired results in Europe. France and Germany lost no time in welcoming them. They told Assad, in no uncertain terms that he had provoked the missile attacks and, therefore, was responsible for it. If only the US had reacted similarly in the 1980s when Iraqi tyrant Saddam Hussein carried out chemical attacks on Iraqis and Iranians! It was the only country that voted against a UN Security Council statement in 1986 condemning the mustard gas attacks by Iraq on the Iranian forces!
The US also allowed its companies to export chemicals to Iraq, which used them on humans. All chemical attacks by Saddam on the Kurds under the Anfal campaign, which left over 150,000 Kurds dead, more than 1,000 Kurdish villages destroyed and about 300,000 Kurds displaced had the blessings of the West. The crop spraying helicopters used for those attacks had came from the US! Strangely, those massacres had no impact on the trade that Iraq had with the West.
The West later gave the world a scare by proclaiming that Saddam was about to acquire nukes. But, he got uranium from Portugal, France and Italy and assistance for centrifuge enrichment came from Germany. The US Senate during one of its inquiries in 1995 stumbled on a startling fact: The United States had, during the Iran-Iraq war, provided Saddam with samples of all the strains of germs used for making biological weapons!
Fear is being expressed in some quarters that unless the Syrian crisis was defused urgently there might be a confrontation between the two leading nuclear powers. But, this fear is unfounded in that the US and Russia have avoided collision over far more serious issues in the past. After all, a confrontation with Russia is the last thing President Trump wants at this juncture. He hasn’t apparently taken leave of his senses to resort to a course of action which is sure to precipitate a nuclear winter.
Speculation is rife that Trump will order strikes on North Korea as well. But, all signs are that he won’t dare do so because he knows that North Korea possesses nukes and is blind to the consequence of its action. In case of a US strike, the North Korean dictator is likely to turn to soft targets if it cannot take on the US.
Assad, no doubt, has to be tamed and the onus is on Russia to do so diplomatically. The general consensus is that President Vladimir Putin has not done enough to make Assad act with restraint. It will be interesting to see how the US and Russia tackle the Syria issue when Tillerson and Lavrov meet for talks tomorrow.