Eagle and the Bear

Can you imagine that those two old Cold War adversaries Eagle (or is it hawk) and Bear (recently morphed into a dove) are sitting down together right now to talk about peace in our time. What the hell is going on?

Thank goodness for Wallace, representing the Bulldogs; had it not been for his intervention, much of Damascus would have been reduced to rubble by now. Who is Wallace did you say? If you don’t know, then you’ll just have to use your powers of deduction and observation to work it out. Here’s a clue.

If Wallace's bruv, the boy David, had been in the hot seat and bolstered by his mate Tone, you can be sure we would be watching the fallout from this stage in the march towards achieving Tone’s stated intent to ‘remake the Middle East’. Thank god he was seen off the premises.

And what a ripple effect Wallace's stance has had. It will go down in history as his finest hour, even if the outcome was an unintended consequence. Even the leader of the Greens commented on the impact of his intervention in her speech to Party conference this week. The caped duo had to put up and shut up; The Eagles' Commander in Chief postponed war in order to inform, consult and seek the support of Congress; the Gallic Rooster (or le Coq Gaulois) had a vote~less debate (is their leader a closet hawk?); the Bear leader took a missive direct to the Eagle clans and the diplomatic shuttle started rolling.

Propping myself up on the stool in Mem’s corner shop[1] last week, I asked him what he thought was going on. He agreed that Assad had probably committed an egregious act and should be held accountable and punished for war crimes, but was clear that killing thousands of innocent people in order to take out Assad's stash of chemical weapons was equally egregious.

Gallic Rooster
Another customer, a grizzly looking indigenous Brit, who had obviously stopped by to participate in the ‘neighbourhood forum for discussing world affairs’ said that Syria was a useful pretext on which to hone in on the real target in the effort to remake the Middle East. This is just another step towards the goal of taking out the real perceived threat in the region, he said. Mem nodded in agreement. Oh? Who is that then I asked? The two men looked grimly at me. Mem smirked a little; he knew that I knew.

In his blog yesterday, Channel4 broadcaster Jon Snow wrote:

There has long been an agenda by some to involve ‘pressure’ upon Iran in the course of supposedly resolving the Syrian crisis….

Who in 1914 ever thought that the assassination of the Archduke of Austria, in far away Sarajevo, could prove the spark to igniting the worst war in world history – world war one? Does far away Damascus, in 2013, harbour an eerily similar potential?

With Bear backing one side of the sectarian divide and Eagle the other, the chances of miscalculation and catastrophe seem pretty high. And the potential for a replay of the Eagle~Bear face/off in Afghanistan between 1979/89 which birthed al~Qaeda is plain for all to see.

But this morning we hear that Eagle and Bear seem to have reached agreement on 'disarming' Syria. What happens in the region during and after the destruction, which will take years, of Assad's chemical weapons sold to him presumably by Bear and probably Eagle as well? Outside of the diplomatic drama, the atrocities on both sides of the sectarian divide continue unabated:

Syria's rebels and soldiers agree: military strikes will change nothing ...

Most commenters agree that Eagle has a poor record in the Middle East and it has the potential to get worse. For now, the media in Bear's territory is describing the new rapprochement between the old protagonists as 'chemistry'. Good heavens! Perhaps this is a time of merging…

                                                                                                                   A time of eagle-bear evolution

 [1]  See post in blog archive -The Politics of Fear, 3lst January 2013: http://amariblaize.blogspot.com/2013/01/the-politics-of-fear.html 


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