08-04-2017 – In days just past, the US launched 59 cruise missiles from warships aimed at the Syrian air base of Al-Shayrat, outside of Homs. The claimed trigger is a claimed chemical attack on civilians in the town of Khan Sheikhoun in the province of Idlib, which the Western corporate media immediately, and without a shred of proof, blamed on the Syrian government headed by President Bashar Al-Assad. Let it first be said that there is a long history of imperialist wars being started by false flag incidents. Perhaps the most evident was the Gulf of Tonkin incident which led to the US and their allies waging war against Vietnam and slaughtering 3 million people in the process. Another prominent one was the infamous claim in 2003 that the Iraqi government then headed by Saddam Hussein held “weapons of mass destruction”, which could be deployed with 45 minutes. The US and their allies massacred around 1 million Iraqis, on the basis of what was confirmed to be a pack of lies.
For six years, the US state and their allies – Saudi Arabia, Israel, the United Kingdom, France, Qatar, Turkey, Australia and others – have waged perhaps the most vicious proxy war in world history against the Syrian state. It is a matter of historical record that the Al Qaeda and ISIS death squads have been armed and funded by the Western powers hell-bent on regime change in Syria. Around 500 000 Syrians have lost their lives in the most brutal fashion, for daring to stand independently of the US Empire. All the while, the corporate media funnelled us wild stories about “moderate rebels” being engaged in “civil war” in Syria. It was all lies, and the lies continue with the latest absurd claim that Syria, while it was in the process of defeating the Western backed barbarians, and with an international conference discussing Syria about to convene, all of a sudden decided to gas its own people. This fantastic narrative is easily disabused.
What we know is that the US led proxy war on Syria, using mercenary lunatics, was defeated. It was defeated by the resistance of the Syrian Arab Army, with the assistance of Russia, Iran and Hezbollah. China also voted in support of Syria in the UN. The intervention of Russia, at the request of the Syrian government, was crucial in turning the tide of the war for regime change. Unable to accept defeat, and especially by Russia, the US has now decided that the game of outsourcing war with regard to Syria has not produced a result, so now it is time for its own military to do the job. It remains to be seen whether or not the US will be able to continue with its air strikes, given that Russia and Iran, at the least, cannot accept yet another hostile provocation to their very existence.
The Trump Administration in the US has done an about face in a matter of a week. As recently as March 30, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was indicating that only the Syrian people should decide the status of Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad. Yet on the 6th of April, Tillerson, when asked if the US would lead a regime change effort in Syria, apparently responded “those steps are underway”. These about faces have as much to do with internal US politics, as the disaster the US war machine has created in Syria and Iraq.
The moment the Trump Presidency assumed office, it was besieged by a “Fight Trump” movement, the motivations and politics of which was always extremely murky. Strongly backed by the Democrats and the elements of the US deep state, which was horrified at a US President which did not wish to continue a strategy of confrontation and war with Russia, the “Fight Trump” movement adopted reactionary pro-war positions, under the guise of combatting the “racism, sexism and homophobia” of the Trump campaign. The “Fight Trump” movement alibied the Obama/Clinton administration for exactly the same things for which they condemned Trump. Consciously or unconsciously, the “Fight Trump” movement implicitly demanded the continuation of Washington’s extreme provocations, if not outright war, against Russia. Trump, in order to disprove the constant allegation that he was working with the Russians, had to go to war simply to save his Presidency. Otherwise, an impeachment headed by the US deep state in alliance with the Democrats may well have followed.
Of course neither Trump nor the Republicans or Democrats, nor the Labor and Liberal parties on these shores, offer anything to working people. These elite parties of capital can only enact the needs of capital, whichever personnel they field. The same goes for all the parliamentary parties, which are a part of the economic crisis of capitalism, even if they imagine they are fighting it. The world crisis of capitalism is so deep that the rulers in the US, Australia, Europe and Japan have no answer but to once again plunge the world into war. Currently standing in the way of the US Empire are Russia, Iran, China, Syria and others. To that extent only, working people need to defend the anti-imperialist wing while also pushing forward for a socialist system in which those who labour govern.
What is desperately needed is an anti-war movement which is genuinely anti-imperialist, and is prepared to politically break from all wings of the system, from all corporate media, from all institutions which apologise for the system which is producing multiple crises. This movement should, at least, demand a total withdrawal of all US allied forces, including Australia, from Syria and the Middle East.
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