This morning’s key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com
- Syria’s president al-Assad helping rival al-Qaeda group fight Syrian rebels
- Christians cheer as Central African Republic president resigns
- Israel announces plans for 1,800 new West Bank settlements
- U.S. sends troops to Somalia
Syria’s president al-Assad helping rival al-Qaeda group fight Syrian rebels
Syrian citizens pray over the coffins wrapped by Syrian flags for the victims who were killed on Thursday by a car bomb (AP)
Nearly 500 people have been killed in northern Syria in the last weekbecause of fighting among supposedly anti-Assad militias. The army ofSyria’s president Bashar al-Assad was not even involved in thisfighting.
As we recently described in detail, there are three groups of anti-Assad militants in Syria:The “moderate” Syrian National Coalition (SNC); the Islamic Front, orJabhat al-Nusra, consisting of Syrian citizens who are salafists; andthe al-Qaeda linked jihadists in the Islamic Emirate in Iraq andSyria/Sham/the Levant (ISIS or ISIL), consisting of many foreignfighters who have been drawn to the region by both the Syria conflictand the deterioration of Iraq since the Americans withdrew.
The SNC and Jabhat al-Nusra are on the same side,fighting against ISIS after a series of attacks. This view has been supported by Turkey’s foreignminister Ahmet Davutoglu:
What I say is that some circles are trying to showal-Assad as less evil than al-Qaeda.
The al-Assad regime has not fought al-Qaeda yet. The Free SyrianArmy is fighting both regime forces and al-Qaeda. The existence ofal-Qaeda creates an area of legitimacy for the regime and thepressures of the regime create [one] for al-Qaeda. Thus theybenefit and support each other.
If the al-Assad regime had not applied such intense pressureduring the past two years, no groups like the Islamic State inIraq and Levant (ISIL) could have emerged.
The argument that ISIS’s actions have helped al-Assad politicallyis obviously true, as al-Assad and Russia use ISIS as a club in theinternational community to support al-Assad’s genocidal atrocities onhis own people. What hasn’t been proven is that al-Assad ismilitarily aiding al-Qaeda against the rival Syrian anti-Assad groups.
However, Debka’s subscriber-only newsletter (sent to me by asubscriber) says that al-Assad has a long history of supportingal-Qaeda militarily.
Christians cheer as Central African Republic president resigns
Christians in Bangui, the capital of Central African Republic (CAR),filled the streets and cheered wildly at the news that the country’spresident, Michel Djotodia, had announced his resignation underpressure from France and others in the international community.Djotodia, a Muslim, became president last March in a coup that oustedpresident François Bozize, a Christian.
Following the coup, Muslims formed Seleka brigades and began goingdoor to door and killing Christians. Millions of Christians acrossthe country have been forced to flee their homes, and some groupsof Christians have been forming anti-Seleka revenge militias. Thus,Christians are hoping that the reversal of the event that triggeredthe massacre will now cause things to go back to the way they were,when Muslims and Christians lived together in love and harmony.Although Christian neighborhoods were rocking with celebrations,Muslim neighborhoods were eerily silent, according to reports.
From the point of view of Generational Dynamics, the resignation ofDjotodia will make little difference, and the hope of a return to theold days is a pipe dream. The violent, visceral attacks by theMuslims on the Christians were triggered by the Djotodia, but theycould only have occurred because of hatreds bottled up for years ordecades, presumably based on anger and resentment by the Muslimminority at discrimination by the Christian majority.
As I’ve written many times, it’s a basic principle of GenerationalDynamics that even in a dictatorship, major policies and events aredetermined by masses of people, entire generations of people, and notby politicians. Thus, Hitler was not the cause of WW II. Whatpoliticians say or do is irrelevant, except insofar as their actionsreflect the attitudes of the people that they represent, and sopoliticians can neither cause nor prevent the great events of history.Djotodia could neither have caused nor prevented the bloody slaughterthat’s unfolding, just as no politician could have caused orprevented the bloody slaughter in Rwanda in 1994.
CAR’s last generational crisis war was the 1928-1931 Kongo-WaraRebellion (“War of the Hoe Handle”), targeting the Frenchcolonialists. The way that this works is that a generational crisiswar is so horrific that the survivors make it their life’s work tomake sure that nothing similar ever happens to their children orgrandchildren. However, once those survivor generations are gone,then all you have left are younger generations with no personalmemories of the last war, and no personal inhibitions against theirultra-nationalist drives. After that, a new generational crisis warbreaks out, and we’re seeing the beginnings of it now. AP and Reuters
Israel announces plans for 1,800 new West Bank settlements
As expected, Israel on Friday announced plans to build 1,800 new WestBank Jewish settlements. The announcement was expected after Israel’srecent release from jail of twenty-six Palestinian prisoners whocommitted terrorist acts prior to the 1994 Oslo accords, as part ofthe deal for Israeli-Palestinian “peace talks.”Prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu is thought to have been forcedto announce the settlement plans as part of a deal withIsraeli politicians who opposed the prisoner release.
According to Saeb Erekat, the top Palestinian negotiator:
The new settlement construction plan is a messagefrom Netanyahu to [U.S. Secretary of State John] Kerry not to comeback to the region to continue his efforts in Israeli-Palestinianpeace talks.
Every time Kerry has stepped up his efforts, returning to theregion, Netanyahu has stepped up his efforts to destroy the peaceprocess. Netanyahu is determined to destroy the two-statesolution.
U.S. sends troops to Somalia
The Obama administration has reversed two decades of U.S. policy thateffectively prohibited military “boots on the ground” in Somalia,after the “Black Hawk Down” disaster in 1993. The U.S. militarysecretly deployed about two dozen troops to Somalia in October toserve as trainers and advisers. Drones from a U.S. base inneighboring Djibouti conduct surveillance missions and occasionalairstrikes, but except for occasion use of special forces, this is thefirst introduction of American troops on the ground. Washington Post
KEYS: Generational Dynamics, Syria, Bashar al-Assad,Islamic Emirate in Iraq and Syria/Sham/the Levant, ISIS, ISIL,Jabhat al-Nusra, al-Nusra Front, Syrian National Coalition, SNC,Central African Republic, C.A.R., Bengui,Michel Djotodia, François Bozize, Seleka,Kongo-Wara Rebellion, War of the Hoe Handle,Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, Saeb Erekat, West Bank,Somalia, Black Hawk Down