Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Poised For Syria

The world waits for something to happen in Syria in response to an alleged atrocity, although forensic analysis of the scene in question is not complete as of this writing.  The general outlines of the geopolitical drivers are pretty obvious.

Western media already announced the general targets in open sources, giving the Syrians time to clear out.  The destruction of the presumed targets will not hamper the Assad regime's campaign against the Islamic rebels.  Indeed, replacing the destroyed systems with new Russian equipment fulfills that country's support contract with Syria, throwing Moscow a bone if it elects not to escalate.  Note Moscow's muted response; Putin has not announced countermeasures but merely shakes his head diplomatically.  The end result is that the Assad regime continues to its likely victory over Islamic radicals and the US satisfies world opinion that it "did something."

The primary concern now is drawing the correct parallel with history.  If the Kosovo Air Campaign is a template, any strike will be over in a fortnight.