Obama's illegal bombs-away strategy can only bring more disaster to Iraq and Syria

The spread of ISIS to Iraq has everything to do with the break up of the country, the exacerbation of sectarian conflicts, and the destruction of its infrastructure, all of course carried out under the US occupation.

Barack Obama’s statement on ISIS last night not only represents a much greater escalation of intervention in Iraq than has been the case so far in the present crisis.

It represents the attempted reversal of everything that the anti war movement won just over a year ago when the British parliament voted against air strikes on Syria, and so rolled a log in front of the US last planned intervention.

That much is clear from two things: one is Obama’s avowed intention to bomb Syria, at the same time as providing arms and training to the supposedly ‘moderate’ Free Syrian Army (which has been calling for such intervention non stop and many of whose former members have gone over to ISIS, accompanied by weapons previously provided by the western powers and its Middle East allies).

The second is John Kerry’s latest trip to the Middle East; beginning in, guess where, Saudi Arabia, that beacon of progress and enlightenment in the Middle East.

The ‘coalition of the really willing’ as it was dubbed during last week’s Nato summit will be a coalition which has at its heart the overthrow of the Syrian regime and the weakening of its alliance with Iran.

It also marks the return of a neocons policy which should have long ago had a stake driven through its heart but which will now come back with a vengeance.

Already the US right are on the offensive over Obama, accusing him of being risk averse in foreign policy (it’s all relative, of course) and blaming lack of intervention earlier as the cause of ISIS’ growth in Syria and Iraq.

In fact, the growth of ISIS must be placed at the door of the US and its allies: funded by Saudis and Qataris, allowed through the Turkish border to fight in Syria, the aim was always to get rid of Assad, regardless of the consequences.

The refusal of the US to even sit down at peace talks with other players including Assad and Iran also helped to prolong and worsen what has become one of the worst modern conflicts.

The spread of ISIS to Iraq has everything to do with the break up of the country, the exacerbation of sectarian conflicts, and the destruction of its infrastructure, all of course carried out under the US occupation.

The proposed bombing is illegal under international law. It would be interesting to see the distinction between EU policy of sanctions against Russia for incursions into Ukraine and EU support for US incursions into Syria.

David Cameron has gone quiet on British support for Obama, no doubt too exercised about the Scotland referendum to cast his eyes further afield. The Guardian reported last week that any joining in of an attack would have to wait until after 18th September.

But we know that Cameron will support this latest attack, just as he has the previous ones. He may indeed see it as a way of distracting from domestic issues. It won’t. We’re headed for another disastrous and quickly unpopular intervention.

Source: Stop the War Coalition