I’ll shut up about Syria in a second, I just have this one thing to get off my chest. Jeremy Corbyn and many others, since May first made her intention to join the US and France in bombing Assad chemical weapons targets inside of Syria known, have vocalised a view that goes like this:
- western intervention in the Middle East “hasn’t worked”.
- the West should “step aside” so that other non-western countries can intervene.
You know, because western intervention is always bad and somehow, non-western intervention is always good. This is a way to conduct a foreign policy these days apparently.
I have news for these guys: we’ve tried non-western intervention in Syria for the last five years at the very least. What do you think Russia is doing there, chaps? Or Iran? And they haven’t been handing out biscuits, they’ve been bombing targets on the ground and aiding the regime militarily in many other ways. And guess what? It hasn’t ended the war in Syria. That almost certainly has something to do with the fact that it was never the intention of either the Russians and the Iranians to bring peace to Syria, but rather to help Assad on his long, bloody road to victory. But here I am thinking that non-western intervention might not always be good again.
I’ve been on far too many panels discussing Syria over the years. They have all aged my soul. I have found it is a topic where people will bullshit to a level unthinkable in any other subject area. A young leftie once said to me: “After what’s happened in Iraq, we in the West must remain neutral on everything to do with the Middle East. That said, Assad needs to be the final victor in Syria.” Anyone who can’t spot the fact that the second sentence there directly contradicts the first, here’s some advice: turn off Russia Today, get some fresh air, and think about your life. Along the way, consider the fact that when you fly a Hezbollah or worse yet, a Syrian regime flag, YOU ARE TAKING A SIDE.
And if you want to take a side, good for you. Just don’t hide behind pacifism and ask us to “give peace a chance”. If you fly a Syrian regime flag you are supporting the bunch who has it most in their power to end the war in Syria whenever they like – and yet, are not doing so. Step outside of your “America is evil” worldview and try and consider what’s really going on in the Middle East. You might not agree with the likes of me if you do so, but at least you’ll stop contradicting yourself every time you talk about this, or at the very, very least, you might stop thinking of Vladimir Putin and the Iranian theocracy as some sort of poster boys for world peace and harmony.