Foreign Policy and the Common Man 1

I try to pay attention to the world and in doing so there are times I get fairly outraged. There are a number of story lines,talking points etc floating out there that finds me in my unhappy place. Here are a few all connected to Syria in one way or another:

Iran: There is  a lot that could be said on this one. the points that drive me bonkers of late tally up on both sides of the ledger. On the US side I’m blown away by both the ham-fisted handling of the situation. I am also exasperated by the press and pundits in their attempts to stoke the flames. Over-blowing events like the Iranian warships in the Mediterranean. They flogged that particular dog to near death and most of them missed the point that should’ve been the focus,Syria & Russia. The Iranians getting to Syria by sea has zero to do with showing the West the finger. Two ships??? The West could’ve plugged them at any stage and the Iranians know that. The real coup is the jockeying along with the Russians to be involved in regional politics with some zing.

Venezuela: Herr Hugo is one smug son of a bitch. What a tool this guy is. America can make him do anything via reverse psychology. The latest example of this is that the USA joined the other civilized nations of the world and called Syria out. What did Hugo do? He shipped over diesel fuel so Assad can fuel the military vehicles he is using to kill civilians. Shop at CITGO? You better f@#%ing not!

Russia: When Russia joined China in striking down a UN resolution aimed at Syria I tried to view it from the Russian side of things. The neo-Soviets are trying to regain some of their past lustre and I get that. Initially I thought the Syria thing was more diplomatic counter stepping on the part of Moscow especially after the Libya thing. NAH! The Soviets are all in for the medium haul. Moscow isn’t short terming anything. Long term needs new foundations,hence my medium haul term. In Syria this means renewing regional influence from the Cold War era,potential arms sales, pipeline routes and the biggie…the Russian naval base at Tartus,Syria. The last one gives the Russians a more operational Mediterranean fleet as opposed to relying on the Black Sea Fleet trying to ply the various straits bordered by potential NATO allies.

China: This last one has less to do with Syria than the rest but is still crucial. The Chinese were being nothing but consistent with their position on Syria in the UN. The Chinese are at the high roller table now though and they ain’t leaving! China has a vision that encompasses huge chunks of the world. They crave natural resources and they are willing to take any step to access or acquire them. They need sustainable markets for their manufactured goods and those “goods” have reached a whole different level. (see this previous Fray for a prime example) They have a very stubborn view on sovereignty that plays out dangerously in what they believe are their lands and waters.

I have blogged here at in2thefray since 2007. During that time I’ve posted a number of posts that I am very proud of. I am on the verge of revisiting a number of those posts that now look like I really knew what I was doing.

**of note the image in this post goes back to Syrias involvement in Lebanon and then Speaker Pelosi’s idiocy. The image still speaks today.



  1. Very appropriate assessment Alfie. The world, as usual, is only getting to be an even more dangerous place.

  2. Alfie says:

    Too true Patrick. There are many things going on that are flying under the radar. Although I suppose there are those that would term me paranoid I don’t accept it.
    Some examples outside of the ones all ready here.
    In SE Asia:
    US deployments to Australia.
    The Korea’s
    In SW Asia:
    Iran into Lebanon
    Kryzgastan [spelling?] Manas air base.
    France,Russia,Turkey,jockeying for influence,where’s America?
    In LA:
    Chilean domestic unrest
    resource crunch in ‘guays and Brazil
    Mexico’s further degradation
    US ignoring the neighbors

  3. Alfie… For God’s sakes… You are a strategic thinker dang it! You left out China in CA and SA. Iran in both of those as well. Hamas in America, and in country based revolutionaries such as La Raza, The New Black Panthers, and the damned Nazi’s!

    Certainly there are operational theater aspects of each. However, you as well as I are going to have to be there, as in prepared, for the EMS response. After all? We were both trained to FEMA level response, and we both know that we will be the first victims… At least that is how we have to approach things. Be that a Hurricane, or some damned terrorist wrecking havoc upon the world.

    I learned that the day when my chief called, and told me to gun up my crew because we were stretched way too thin. That was the day that Columbine HS got treated to what the hell happens when the government creates free fire zones…

  4. Alfie says:

    I remember well the mci and disaster response training. I had a gig every two years just to be clear what to do for the nuke plant in my service area. We always joked that the real staging for that was “the rule of thumb” That of course is hold out your arm with thumb up. Close one eye. If you can see the melting,smoking,glowing nuke outside the boundary of your thumb-YOU’RE TOO CLOSE!
    On a more serious note I personally think US domestic issues can go in two broad directions.
    We either get it together with carefully guarded national fervor or last guy out please turn out the lights.With the former we will all have to be careful not to lose our freedom while at the same time be committed not to lose the country. The latter is just 100% ugly no matter how you slice it.

  5. Alfie says:

    A quick 2:24 video from Al Jazeera Eng. on the Venezuela+Syria thing. I like the source and what it says.Say what you will about AJe they do do some reporting that others can’t,won’t and/or do it in a manner that can be quite good.

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