SISMEC research associates Musa al-Gharbi and ST McNeil published a critique of the White House’s missile attack on Syria, following sarin gas deployment. Read parts one, two and three over at Counterpunch.
In philosophy circles, bullshit is a technical term denoting a claim which is presented as “fact” although its veracity has not been established. The truth value of bullshit is largely irrelevant to its propagators. Bullshit is disseminated in the service of particular ends, typically opaque to the audience. There is no better description for the Obama Administration’s case for intervention in Syria.
The Obama Administration had been intending to use the Ghouta incident as a pretext for changing the balance of power “on the ground” in Syria. They were prevented from direct military action as a result of the deft maneuvering of Syria and Russia, so they have instead ramped up the delivery of arms to the rebels, and stand poised to shift the training of said rebels from a small CIA operation into a much larger Pentagon-run operation.
Moreover, the White House continues to make its case for strikes, despite the deal which was recently achieved with Russia and the al-Assad government. There are bills being floated in the Senate which would give the US the right to attack if the Administration deems the regime’s progress “unsatisfactory,” even in the absence of U.N. agreement. If the history of Iraq is any indication, we can rest assured that the progress will be deemed insufficient regardless of how well the Syrian government complies, providing ever-new pretexts to increase “allied” involvement. The opposition is already calling for further military restrictions on the Syrian government.
That is, while the recent developments were inconvenient for the Administration, the plans to depose al-Assad have been in the works since 2004–they will not be abandoned so easily. Sanity may prevail in this particular battle, but the war rages on. What follows is the third and final chapter in our deconstruction of the Obama Administration’s case for intervention in Syria.