Welcome to DU! The truly grassroots left-of-center political community where regular people, not algorithms, drive the discussions and set the standards. Join the community: Create a free account Support DU (and get rid of ads!): Become a Star Member All Forums Issue Forums Culture Forums Alliance Forums Region Forums Support Forums Help & Search


(114,904 posts)
Sat Aug 20, 2016, 08:34 AM Aug 2016

Let's talk about Syria. It's currently the "hottest" war zone- and the U.S., Russia, Syria, Turkey

appear headed on a collision course.

For instance, this story illustrates that:

U.S. jets scramble as Syrians bomb near American forces

U.S. fighter jets scrambled to eastern Syria this week when Syrian bombers attacked in the vicinity of American and coalition Special Operations forces working with Kurdish and Arab opposition fighters, the Pentagon said Friday.

The unprecedented incident, near the Syrian city of Hasakah, did not result in a direct confrontation or any injury to U.S. or coalition forces.

But it illustrated the increasingly tense and ambiguous Syrian battlefield, where aircraft and ground troops from multiple countries — with multiple agendas and loyalties — are fighting overlapping wars.

Following the initial Thursday incident, the coalition began “actively patrolling the airspace nearby,” a Defense Department official said. Early Friday, “two Syrian SU-24 aircraft attempted to transit the area and were met by coalition fighter aircraft,” which “encouraged” the Syrians to depart “without further incident,” said the official, who spoke on a Pentagon-imposed condition of anonymity.

Pentagon Warns Assad Regime to Avoid Action Near U.S. and Allied Forces


Turkey to take more active role on Syria in next six months, PM says


Yesterday, Russia fired cruise missiles from warships in the Mediterranean into Syria

MOSCOW — Russia flexed its muscles again over Syria on Friday, for the first time launching cruise missiles at targets from warships in the Mediterranean Sea days after beginning bombing runs from a base in Iran.

Taken together, the new military moves appeared to be a demonstration that Russia has the ability to strike from virtually all directions in a region where it has been reasserting its power — from Iran, from warships in the Caspian Sea, from its base in the Syrian coastal province of Latakia and now from the Mediterranean.

The United States also asserted its military might in a new way, scrambling its aircraft to protect its forces, and those it is supporting, from Syrian government airstrikes. The Pentagon issued a blunt warning to the Syrian government after its warplanes struck a Kurdish-controlled region where American military personnel were on the ground.

“The Syrian regime would be well advised not to interfere with coalition forces or our partners,” said Capt. Jeff Davis, a Pentagon spokesman.



The Syrian Civil War has been raging now for 5 years. It has displaced over 10 million people from their homes. Almost 4 million have become refugees. It has spilled over into Lebanon and Turkey and Iraq. Russia is using Iranian air bases.

It goes without saying that the people in Syria are suffering greatly day in day out, month after month and year after year. There is no accurate count of the deaths incurred; estimates range from around 120,000 to 500,000.

I haven't a clue as to what can or should be done, beyond supporting humanitarian efforts and enabling more Syrian refugees to enter the U.S., but that it's the tensest place on earth, from a geopolitical point of view, seems all too obvious.


8 replies = new reply since forum marked as read
Highlight: NoneDon't highlight anything 5 newestHighlight 5 most recent replies
Let's talk about Syria. It's currently the "hottest" war zone- and the U.S., Russia, Syria, Turkey (Original Post) cali Aug 2016 OP
Add China to the mix cali Aug 2016 #1
And this cali Aug 2016 #2
World war 3. All over resources ghostsinthemachine Aug 2016 #3
I don't think it's all about resources. cali Aug 2016 #4
Rsources, pipelines and ports. ghostsinthemachine Aug 2016 #7
A dictator wants to stay in power. A outside power wants a military base there. pampango Aug 2016 #8
Climate change played a large part Arazi Aug 2016 #5
for sure. and yes, the U.S. bears the responsibility you refer to re the Arab Spring revolutions cali Aug 2016 #6


(3,569 posts)
3. World war 3. All over resources
Sat Aug 20, 2016, 11:34 AM
Aug 2016

This battle is one Russia cannot lose. If they do, and Assad is removed, and the US replaces him with a West friendly face, the war will be fought outside the middle East.



(114,904 posts)
4. I don't think it's all about resources.
Sat Aug 20, 2016, 11:45 AM
Aug 2016

I think it's become a power struggle over... power.

I have no idea what will help the Syrian people, beyond peace negotiations, which are a remote possibility at this time. Should Assad be removed, the Alawite population would likely suffer genocide.

I don't know that it's a battle Russia can't lose. Seems to me that there can be no winners.


(3,569 posts)
7. Rsources, pipelines and ports.
Sat Aug 20, 2016, 06:17 PM
Aug 2016

And a whole lot of ego. If Russia loses here then Crimea/Ukraine become do or die.


(24,692 posts)
8. A dictator wants to stay in power. A outside power wants a military base there.
Sat Aug 20, 2016, 06:53 PM
Aug 2016

Marcos did the same with the US in the Philippines. The big country supports the local dictator who, in return, provides the big country with a military base or two (in the case of the US and Marcos).


(6,821 posts)
5. Climate change played a large part
Sat Aug 20, 2016, 12:07 PM
Aug 2016

But a lot of blame belongs to the US and our meddling in Arab Spring revolts we thought we could control. We provoked a well protected asset of Russia - Syria contains a valuable Russian port and brought about a very predictable reaction from Russia


(114,904 posts)
6. for sure. and yes, the U.S. bears the responsibility you refer to re the Arab Spring revolutions
Sat Aug 20, 2016, 12:10 PM
Aug 2016

But it seems to me to be so much more complex than those two factors and incorporates so much history- from colonialism under the British Empire to the Iraq War to historic religious tensions....

Latest Discussions»General Discussion»Let's talk about Syria. ...