Desperate to see the "rebels" prevail with the Syrian government now pushing back into the "rebel" held north there are some in Washington and London who think that Assad can be eased out by threats and pea shooters. Maybe it's just for show; who knows. What I do know is that "rebels" linked to Al Quaeda were apprehended at the end of May by Turkey in possession of a 2 Kg cannister of the sarin nerve agent that the west is now saying has been deployed by Syrian government forces, (WMD anyone?). The Al Nusra linked faction was apparently planning to export its terror campaign into southern Turkey. Oh yes, and then there was that park in Istanbul.
Shouldn't we be more alert to what is going on here? Terrorists always try and use violence to radicalise and divide otherwise peaceful movements so that the poison of their terror can spread by fear and loathing. It matters little what the antagonists believe or what the colour of their politics or religion happens to be ... just exploit it. Terrorism is always both parasitic and manipulative. That's what they always want ... war; war on the streets, war between the nations ... war so they might prevail.
The Syrian conflict, aided and abetted by these demonic forces now has all the essential ingredients of an international conflict, seeded by a self righteous proxy war between the "not-so-great" world powers. We may yet see a Third World War breaking out from this orchestrated nesting of evil. The First World War started from an arguably much less contentious situation. And what does the west do? Divide the world up into goodies (the "rebels") and the baddies (the Syrian government). In this the hawks can always rely on the impressionable consciences of the liberal left. Some American politicians are now actually talking about a "fair fight." How on earth is this at all helpful in reducing tension, brokering peace and bringing the amenable to the table? Arming one side against the other is just going to exacerbate and spread the conflict. Israel is getting nervous, as is Turkey and Lebanon is already being dragged into the dark vortex of sectarian violence.
What we need now is less propaganda, less pulling at heart strings to justify violent intervention and more hard nosed, even handed diplomacy, eschewing self interest, intimidation and threats. But who now has clean hands? Everyone (just about) whiffs of petrol and most are standing far, far too close to the fire. It does not look good. It does not look good at all but there may as yet be enough time to stop this one spinning out of control.
Wake up! Stop sleep walking toward the abyss! Shut up ... stop performing to the media and your electorate and work hard, damned hard, for peace. You know whom I'm talking to!