The Limits of Trump’s Bravado
By Manuel E. Yepe
Exclusive for daily POR ESTO! of Mérida, México.
A CubaNews translation. Edited by Walter Lippmann.
“The use of Russian anti-aircraft defense systems by the Syrian army in retaliation to the US missile strike would have provoked a nuclear conflict. That did not come only thanks to the self-control that Vladimir Putin showed as Supreme Commander of Russia”, daily Izvestia daily reported, quoting Sergei Sudakov, member of the Academy of Military Sciences of the Russian Federation.
“Many Russian citizens believe Russia should have repelled the aggression. But those who think that way ignore that, had this been so, the shoot-down of US missiles would have provoked a scenario of conflict between two nuclear powers in the territory of a third country.” According to Sudakov, Trump placed humanity at the doors of a true “hot war”.
Military analyst Vladislav Shuryguin clarified in Pravda that the Russian air defense systems deployed in Syria defend the interests of Russia, and are under the military command of Russia. Thus, “when Israel or Turkey periodically bomb Syria, we can protect our air base and its facilities.” Shuryguin believes the Russians made a political decision, because the shooting-down of US missiles would have undoubtedly led to a conflict between Russia and the United States.
Meanwhile, the Russian Defense Ministry denounced the absence of evidence to support the US accusation about the existence of chemical weapons in the Syrian base of Al Shairat which the US used as the pretext to attack that facility.
Press media, firefighters, police and Syrian authorities who went to the base after the US airborne-Tomahawk missile aggression did not find the presence of deposits or bombs with chemical weapons. “People who work there are going about their tasks with total normality; no one is wearing special suits to handle toxic substances,” said Major General Igor Konashenkov, one of the Russian chiefs of the base.
Obviously, observers’ attention was drawn to the similarity between this situation and the white powder shown by Gen. Colin Powell to justify US aggression against Iraq in 2003, or the report to the Parliament of then-British Prime Minister, Anthony Blair, on alleged chemical weapons in that Arab country that same year.
Impartial observers say the United States used the events as a pretext to punish Syria. At the same time, the US attack would delay the defeat of the Islamic State which would consolidate the position of Bashar al-Assad, Syria’s legitimate leader.
The Syrian government is calling for the creation of an international committee of professional and independent professional experts to investigate the circumstances which led to the Washington’s attack on Syria. This would be the only legal body capable of verifying whether from that air base chemical weapons could have been used.
The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons [OPCW] has pointed out that any manipulation or use of toxic substances leaves a trace that can be detected weeks and even months later.
Three years ago, the United Nations verified the total disarmament of chemical weapons in Syria. Therefore, specialized agencies of the world organization would now have to investigate just how the alleged return of this type of weapons to the country took place, and through which border.
All these justifications for the cruise-missile attack on Syria are inconsistent with Donald Trump’s statements during his election campaign. Trump announced that, if elected President, he would oppose the involvement of the nation in international conflicts, something undoubtedly in conflict with the agenda of the real power that governs the empire.
Trump had said he would prioritize the defeat of global terrorism, an objective that also contradicts this attack –which in fact prolongs the existence of the main enemy which he had said the United States should focus on– because, with this attack, he saved the Islamic State from imminent defeat at the hands of the Syrian army.
It has become clear, once again, that the underlying policy of the United States, whoever is President and whichever party is in government, is to prolong wars as much as possible in the interest of profit for the industrial military complex.
Donald Trump clearly is not as absurd as it appears in the performance of his presidency. The thing is that the goals he proclaims are almost never real goals. Sometimes they only express a part of his true objectives, to which he intends to arrive by sleight-of-hand.
Trump’s bravado as president no doubt has its limit there where it surpasses the guidelines fixed by the real power that is not achieved in democratic facade elections.
April 11, 2017.