Washington has once again slammed the Syrian regime, warning of new international measures unless it withdraws security forces from the streets. But a US-based political cartoonist says human rights are merely a cover for America’s real intentions.
Soldiers walking out from a US helicopter somewhere north of Baghdad during Operation Swarmer (AFP Photo)
“I think we are going to look at the usual trajectory of ramping up the sanctions, trying to deny diplomatic recognition and cutting off all economic activity between Syria and US allies in the region,” Ted Rall told RT. “These things almost have a logical ramping up that you see in one crisis after the other. It’s almost like it’s a self-generating path to a future war, and it becomes even more pronounced at a time when the United States is winding down its involvement in Iraq.”
What is really driving Washington’s insistence on regime change there, Rall explains, is the desire to please its regional ally. Human rights abuses serve here as a convenient excuse which is only addressed from one side – when it is convenient for the West.
“This is an opportunity for the United States to get rid of sort of a regional mini-power that they find irritating, and as a way to do a favor to its chief ally in the region – Israel,” he said. “Human rights is something that the United States only cites when it’s convenient for them. When their allies are guilty of human rights abuses in places like in Central Asia there’s a completely different narrative there, and you are just not looking at the same kind of sanctions and other activities.”
Similarly, the forthcoming mission of Arab League observers to Syria may later be used as a local reference in accusations and as a justification for military action.
“I don’t think [the Arab League mission] is going to make much difference… If this is going to be regime change against Syria, it’s not going to be the Arab League action,” Ted Rall explained. “However, if the United States were to ramp up towards a military action in the coming year, they would certainly cite the Arab League’s statements as a way to justify it.”
Rall recalls that the same scenario was applied to Iraq in the run-up to the war against Saddam Hussein, when regional powers were cited as the reason why the United States should go in.
Russia Today , 22 December, 2011.