World View: U.N. Report Says Jihadists Are Flooding into Syria

World View: U.N. Report Says Jihadists Are Flooding into Syria

This morning’s key headlines from

  • Burkina Faso, critical U.S. ally, in government meltdown
  • U.N. report says that jihadists are flooding into Syria

Burkina Faso, critical U.S. ally, in government meltdown

After several days of violent anti-government protests, includingburning down the parliament and several government buildings in thecapital city Ouagadougou, protesters are cheering euphoricallyfollowing the announcement that president Blaise Compaoré finallyagreed to step down after 27 years in power.Compaoré issued a statement: 

In order to preserve the democratic gains, as well associal peace, I declare a power vacuum to allow the establishmentof a transition leading to free and fair elections within amaximum of 90 days. For my part, I think I have fulfilled myduty.

Compaoré’s whereabouts are unknown. Since there’s no clear-cutconstitutional successor, army chief Gen. Honoré Nabéré Traoréannounced that he would take power. There are suspicions that thearmy may have engineered the resignation so that the army could takepower. 

Burkina Faso is an important U.S. ally, hosting a U.S. base inOuagadougou, operating since 2007, which serves as a hub for a U.Sspying network in the region, with spy planes departing from the baseto fly over Mali, Mauritania, and the Sahara, tracking fighters fromthe al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM). 

What triggered the riots was the plan by Compaoré to amend BurkinaFaso’s constitution so that he could continue in power past thecurrent term limit date of 2015. It’s thought that Compaoré’s ousterwill serve as a warning to Africa’s other military leaders who havestayed in power for decades and who are also considering revising theconstitution. These include Teodoro Obiang Nguema of EquatorialGuinea, José Eduardo dos Santos, president of Angola, Paul Biya,president of Cameroon, Yoweri Museveni of Uganda, and Robert Mugabe ofZimbabwe, all of whom have been power since the 1980s. 

Note: If any reader is familiar with the history of Burkina Faso andcan help me identify the major tribal wars (generational crisis wars)of the last century or two, I would appreciate the help. 

ABC News and Washington Post and Nigerian Guardian News

U.N. report says that jihadists are flooding into Syria

According to a new United Nations report, foreign jihadists areflooding into Syria and Iraq to join jihadist terror groups at therate of over 1,000 per month, with about 15,000 there already.They’re arriving from over 80 countries around the world, and they’rejoining the Islamic State / of Iraq and Syria (IS or ISIS or ISIL) andthe al-Qaeda linked Jabhat al-Nusra (al-Nusra Front), as well as otheral-Qaeda linked terrorist groups. 

As I wrote a couple of weeks ago (“19-Oct-14 World View — Forecasting the Ebola endgame and Global Risk”), my view is that the Syria/Iraq conflicts havepassed the point of no return and that they will not be settledbefore they spiral into a larger regional war between Sunni and ShiaMuslims. This is in contrast to other brief Mideast wars ofthe past few years, such as the recent Israeli-Hamas war inGaza. 

As I’ve been writing for two years, the reason that Sunni jihadistsare flooding into Syria is that Syria’s Shia/Alawite president Basharal-Assad has flattened entire Sunni villages with Russia’s heavyweapons, he’s killed children by sending missiles into exam rooms andbedrooms, he’s killed dozens with sarin gas, and he’s killed countlessmore with barrel bombs loaded with explosives, metals, and chlorinegas. In addition, he’s used electrocution, eye-gouging,strangulation, starvation, and beatings on tens of thousands ofprisoners on a massive “industrial strength” scale, and does withcomplete impunity. 

Also to blame is Russia’s president Vladimir Putin, who has beensupplying al-Assad with the heavy weapons he needs to continuehis slaughter of the Sunni civilians. 

However, many analysts are blaming U.S. president Barack Obamafor the rise of ISIS. According to these analysts, the Obamaadministration made three fundamental mistakes: 

  • The withdrawal of all American troops from Iraq without leaving a smaller force behind, thus throwing away all the gains that Americans had fought for in the Iraq war.
  • The lack of a major effort to supply arms to Syria’s moderate anti-Assad rebels, such as the Free Syrian Army (FSA).
  • The damage to U.S. credibility by setting a “red line” for al-Assad on the use of chemical weapons, and then humiliatingly backing down when al-Assad used sarin gas on his own people. Al-Assad continues to use chemical weapons to this day — chlorine gas is packed into barrel bombs along with metals and explosives.

Guardian (London) and Reuters and The National (UAE)

KEYS: Generational Dynamics, Burkina Faso, Blaise Compaoré, Ouagadougou,Islamic State / of Iraq and Syria/Sham/the Levant, IS, ISIS, ISIL,Free Syrian Army, FSA, Jabhat al-Nusra, al-Nusra Front 

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