Gregory G. H. Rihn (milwaukeesfs) wrote,
Gregory G. H. Rihn

Russia, Crimea, and Syria

The following is the text of an e-mail I just sent to the White House. Despite the constant use of the metaphor, I do not believe that international relations is like a game of chess. Nevertheless, in this case, there is an analogy to be made. By becoming involved in Crimea, President Putin has "pinned" some of his military force, while "uncovering" Syria--.

"Russia, Crimea, and Syria

It's my understanding, and, I think, that of a lot of people, that one of the major reasons the United States and its allies haven't staged a Libya-style air war against the Bashir regime is because Russia has held its hand over Syria, protecting its client. The possibility of Russia entering the fray has deterred other governments from overt involvement.

However, now, with Russia committed in Crimea and threatening east Ukraine, those Russian military forces closest to the Mideast are now tied up. Analysts have noted that, although Russia still possesses the second largest military force in the world, much of it is occupied with insurgencies, and maintaining security on the Chinese border and the Far East. The Bashir government, emboldened by Russia's actions in Crimea, has recently indicated that any solution for the Syrian crisis involving regime change is now off the table.

Therefore, I propose that the United States begin to put together the forces for an intervention for Syria similar to that staged in Libya in 2011, beginning by repositioning US aircraft carrier fleets to the Eastern Mediterranean Sea immediately. This will have the salutary effect of getting Russia's attention by threatening the loss of Russia's Arab client, access to Mediterranean port facilities, and influence in the Mideast. If Russia does not withdraw from Crimea, we should proceed to attack and punish Syrian government military forces from the air, as was done with Libya, until Bashir is defeated or flees.
As with Libya, I'm sure the result won't be pretty or predictable, but would almost certainly be an improvement, and would provide a counterbalance to Russian expansionism in the Crimea-Ukraine region."

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