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This article appears in the June 1, 2012 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.

NATO's Syria Ploy Could Start
Thermonuclear War

by Jeffrey Steinberg

[PDF version of this article]

May 29—-Days before the May 25 massacre in the Syrian village of Houla, NATO leaders huddled in Chicago, and planned out a new escalation in the regime-change drive targeted against President Bashar al-Assad. That escalation, and the sharp Russian and Chinese responses, have once again put the world on the brink of a potential thermonuclear confrontation.

Up until this moment, the precise details of what happened in the village in Homs province remain unclear. What is certain, however, is that the incident has been seized on by Britain, France, the Obama Administration, and others, to push for the military overthrow of the Syrian government. Ultimately, the targets of the Syria campaign are Russia and China, who have so far refused to cave into the demands from London and Washington that the entire system of national sovereignty be surrendered, in favor of a post-Westphalian feudal order, under the banner of "humanitarian intervention" and "Responsibility To Protect (R2P)."

Within moments of the first news accounts of the mass killings in Houla, British Foreign Secretary William Hague produced a draft United Nations Security Council document, denouncing the Assad government, and calling for a Chapter 7 authorization for use of force. The move had the instant backing of both the French and U.S. governments. At that point, Russia stepped in to demand the convening of an emergency UN Security Council session, which occurred late on the afternoon of Sunday, May 27. Gen. Robert Mood, the commander of the UN/Arab League observer mission in Syria, was asked to deliver a closed-door briefing to the Security Council members on the findings up to that point about the massacre.

According to accounts from participants in that Security Council session, General Mood confirmed that there had been over 100 people killed, including many women and children, and that the majority had been killed at close range, not as the consequence of shelling by Syrian Army or rebel fire.

Mood refused to conclude that the Syrian government was responsible for the killings, and reported that the Syrian government was going to conduct a full inquiry and share the results with the UN team.

Despite this, the UN representatives from Germany, France, and Britain emerged from the special Security Council session, and lied to reporters that the Council had concluded that the Assad government was guilty of the massacres, and demanded immediate action. Then, Russian UN Deputy Ambassador Alexander Pankin stepped to the microphone to correct the lies that had just been told. He emphasized that there was no evidence yet implicating the Assad government in the incident, and that the Security Council would await a full report from General Mood.

After the Russian diplomat spoke, Dr. Bashar Jaafari, the longstanding Syrian Ambassador to the United Nations, gave a detailed report on what was known of the incident, after issuing a harsh condemnation of the "tsunami of lies" by the German, French, and British diplomats. Dr. Jaafari reported that, following the May 25 Friday prayers, 200-300 heavily armed men launched an assault on five separate law enforcement posts in Houla. The assault lasted nine hours, from 2 p.m. to 11 p.m., and extended to two other villages within several kilometers of Houla. He described the attacks as "full-fledged military operations" that were thoroughly premeditated. In the nearby village of Shumeria, a National Hospital was burned to the ground, crops set on fire, and villagers killed.

Dr. Jaafari went on to complain that "some permanent members" of the Security Council would "spare no effort to provide the Syrian opposition with weapons." He cited the pattern of suicide bombings and al-Qaeda deployments into Syria, warning his fellow UN ambassadors, "You cannot be arsonists and firemen at the same time."

The Deeper Significance

The flagrant attempt to create the pretext for a full-scale Libya-modeled military intervention to overthrow the Assad government in Syria, must be understood in the context of the onrushing collapse of the entire trans-Atlantic financial and monetary system, and the desperation of London and its pawn, President Barack Obama, to force the Putin government to cave in to the post-nation-state scheme.

Not only has Russian President Vladimir Putin refused to cave in. At every opportunity top Russian officials, from Putin to Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev, to Chief of General Staff Nikolai Makarov, have flaunted the fact that Russia maintains an overkill arsenal of thermonuclear weapons that can obliterate mankind. This has driven the British crazy, as reflected in a recent Financial Times rant against what they termed Russian "Dr. Strangelove" antics.

The reality is that, with both the United States and Russia maintaining massive stockpiles of thermonuclear weapons and delivery systems, general war is unthinkable. For London, this poses an intractable dilemma. Whereas, in the past, the British and earlier empires, could launch general wars to impose dictatorship at the moment of financial collapse, as was the case with the outbreaks of two world wars during the previous century, now the price of general war is mass extinction of all of humanity. That reality even gives the genocidalists in and around the British monarchy reason to pause.

For the past year, London and Obama have been attempting to get Moscow to back down and accept post-Westphalian[1] dictatorship as an alternative to thermonuclear Armageddon. And Moscow has adamantly refused to capitulate, with the backing of the leadership of China as well.

A Clash of Doctrines

The drive for a post-Westphalian global dictatorship under the guise of humanitarian interventionism was first put forward by then-British Prime Minister Tony Blair in April 1999, in a speech in Chicago during the Kosovo War. Blair insisted that sovereignty was no longer sacrosanct, and that any time a ruler turned against his own population, it was the obligation of the international community to intervene.

While the Kosovo War provided a limited precedent for this "Blair Doctrine," then-President Bill Clinton broke with Blair over the issue of sending NATO troops into Serbia to bring down the Milosevic regime. That split between Blair and Clinton has never been repaired.

In the intervening decade, the doctrine of humanitarian intervention and R2P has been repeatedly peddled from London, with limited success—until the 2011 overthrow and assassination of Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi—and the ascent of a group of fanatical "humanitarian interventionists" in the Obama Administration, led by UN Ambassador Susan Rice and White House aide Samantha Power. Last month, President Obama named Power as the head of an Executive branch Atrocities Prevention Board.

Obama's wholehearted embrace of the Blair Doctrine and the creation of an Executive branch interagency board to implement this post-nation-state horror show, puts the United States on a collision course with President Putin's Russia. At the beginning of May, Prime Minister Medvedev told an international law forum in St. Petersburg that Russia would resist any attempt to challenge the system of national sovereignty enshrined in the United Nations Charter and the role of the UN Security Council. Russian ambassadors all over the world had been instructed to brief host governments on this new "Putin Doctrine," according to EIR's sources.

The conflict between the Blair and Putin doctrines is fundamental. It is the conflict between the nation-state system and that of oligarchical feudal dictatorship. Behind the Blair Doctrine is a commitment, most recently spelled out by the Club of Rome, that world population must be reduced from 7 billion people down to around 1 billion—in order to preserve the imperial system.

There is no middle ground between these two positions. Russia has made it clear that the attempt to violate the system of sovereign nation-states can lead directly to thermonuclear war—and they are not bluffing.

The question now, as the British system of monetarism comes crashing down on both sides of the Atlantic, is what the next move from London and Obama will be.

[1] The 1648 Treaty of Westphalia ended the Thirty Years War in Europe, and established the principle of national sovereignty, based on the concept of nations acting on behalf of the "benefit of the other."

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