Everyone’s spoiling for a fight with the medieval Islamic death cult of Daesh (or Islamic State as it grandly calls itself) – including me.
Prime Minister Cameron wants to earn his credentials as a gun-toting sheriff to take on the bad guys with the black hats and the black flags. But for Britain to go bowling into the madness that is Syria would be pointless to the point of dangerous lunacy.
On this vexing subject, new pacifist Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has made the right call, along with UKIP’s world-wise Nigel Farage – so he is not alone.
Syria’s unpleasant President Assad has the country sewn up with some 50% of the rigged vote. His opposition is a disparate bunch of whom only another 50% share the West’s vision of democracy. Therefore there can be no winning strategy or clear exit plan.
The Russians (who have supported Assad long-term and want his Mediterranean naval facilities) have already check-mated the West by allying themselves against all his enemies.
As you will see in the last post, there is little the RAF can contribute in Syria. Arguably they have enough to do against IS in Iraq, which is the UK’s recent legacy.
Believe it or not, Comrade Corbyn is right this time.
Syria is a private party between the Syrians and their Russian guests. The west is not invited.
Our wisest option is to allow no disillusioned British or European poopers from that party back home (remove passports and citizenship) and get refugees funded by Saudi Arabia and its allies under the United Nations.
If Russia successfully finishes off Islamic State in Syria, refugees can decide to go back home.
It gives the West the opportunity to form a diplomatic understanding with Putin that may possibly involve a political change in Damascus that doesn’t leave Assad in complete control. The current opportunity should not be squandered because of sour grapes.
Meanwhile the West should concentrate in knocking seven bells out of Daesh in Iraq and supporting the Kurds there. George Bush and Tony Blair made Iraq our domain and it is our responsibility to leave it in better shape than we found it.
An achievement that so far is a long way off.