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Historians will ask why Obama destroyed & torpedoed Syrian peace deal

Afshin Rattansi is a journalist, author of “The Dream of the Decade – the London Novels” and an RT Contributor. He can be reached at afshinrattansi@hotmail.com.

Published time: September 05, 2013 11:20
A Free Syrian Army fighter stands near a damaged military tank that belonged to the forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar Al-Assad after they seized it, in Aleppo's town of Khanasir August 29, 2013. (Reuters/Molhem Barakat)

As the humanitarian crisis unfolds in the Syrian conflict, with suffering refugees suffering reaching the two-million mark, RT’s contributor Afshin Rattansi says Obama actually destroyed the peace deal when it was on the table.

RT: First, let us just talk about where the countries are standing at the moment. France, for example, is saying “We won’t go ahead and strike unless US Congress sanctions military action”. And so, does that actually mean that this has got nothing to do with the UN Security Council; it all depends on what the US says?

The UN Refugee Agency has announced the number of Syrians, who have fled the country since civil war began in March 2011, has exceeded 2 million.

Afshin Rattansi: That’s right. President Obama, that first African-American president in history, is presiding over what he presumably realizes is direct conflict with the UN, though it does have Ban-Ki Moon, a sanguine figure who doesn’t seem to care that much about the fact that it looks like it may suffer the same fate as the League of Nations. And President Francois Hollande cutting a suitably Napoleonic figure, saying “We feel very strongly about it, but we won’t do it, if President Obama doesn’t get his Congressional support”… I don’t know it’s not clear at the moment whether President Obama needs that Congressional support. But he has it anyway, if he gives away on Obama care maybe.

RT: It seems that he has got that support, because today the leaders have said they will support military intervention, and of course, this big vote is next week. But do you think there will be a definite vote in Congress for Obama to go ahead? The indications are there.

AR: I suppose when we first heard the Russian Defense Ministry talking about ballistic items being shot out of ships, it should drive home the point to people around the world that Obama can strike at any moment.

He has, after all, conducted joint strikes in the past 72 hours in Yemen and in Afghanistan. So, I don’t think he’ll wait for that approval; he is quite convinced he’ll get this approval definitely and there will be a few deals on things President Obama didn’t particularly want anyway, and was only doing to please his base. But no, I don’t think he needs Congressional approval, the exact vote, he was very clear to say he needed no timeline and there’s the fact that President Assad is threatening US national security, in which case there’s a plenty of precedent for the United States President to act alone. The Congressional thing is a bit of window-dressing.

A Free Syrian Army fighter runs for cover during clashes with forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar Al-Assad beside the Canadian Hospital in Aleppo, August 31, 2013. (Reuters/Molhem Barakat)

RT: Two million refugees now, a humanitarian crisis unfolding… What sort of repercussions does this have on neighboring countries?

AR: When one looks at those numbers of American destroyers, the number of missiles, and the cost of all of that… Historians in the future will be saying, “Why”, when there was a peace deal on the table to be discussed in Geneva, did Obama destroy and torpedo the peace deal and leave the plight of the refugees to get worse and worse?
One should add of course that while there are brilliant people working for NGO refugee agencies, they act as an arm of the American government. It might be incumbent on some of those refugee agency volunteers, and more so the people who are paid to work for them, to look at where their salaries are coming from – from the same people that are creating the refugee crisis. But, as you say, two million… When I was last in Syria, I was writing for Counter Punch and I was talking about the massive amount of care and concern President Assad’s government had for the results of the NATO invasion of Iraq, taking in the equivalent, proportionately, of twenty million refugees, if it was the United States.

RT: Just briefly, you’re there in London, Syria seems to be a long, long way away, but the refugee crisis, could it have some sort of impact on Europe?

AR: It was very recently that both parties here –Conservative and Labor - were ratcheting up pressure, saying “We don’t want asylum seekers”.  The Labor party here often says, “We are swamped with asylum seekers”. I think they live on 7 dollars a day. Of course, the refugee crisis will lead to Syrians looking for succor. And I’m sure Britain and America will welcome all these refugees. Again, as you say, hundreds of thousands in that region, and there will be refugees on the streets of London, if Obama carries out his plans for war.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.

Comments (3)

 

stanny 03.10.2013 19:03

Obamah is a failed president looking for an achievement of any kind. He needs a war to legitamise his presidency. Like the very worst of US presidents.

 

Charles 07.09.2013 21:42

The reason is so simple, folks: Obama is a Muslim by birth and supports Islamic extremists. He hardly bothers to deny this, by the way. He was elected by ignorant "Democrats" ; who don't know the difference between "Islam" and "He's lame" or between "Mohammad" and "Mohammad Ali".

 

kc 06.09.2013 04:02

Just like pear harbor and 9/11 .......

The world need the truth .........

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