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Neo-Cons Pushing World War III
via Syria Regime-Change Fantasies

Nov. 1, 2011 (EIRNS)—This release was issued today by the Lyndon LaRouche Political Action Committee.

The usual neo-con suspects are craving regime change in Syria, totally ignoring the prospect that such an action could trigger an out-of-control series of events leading to general war. In the past 72 hours, the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP), the think tank spawn of AIPAC, published a blunt call for a public debate on how to conduct regime change in Syria.

The WINEP paper, "Implications of Military Intervention in Syria," was written by Jeffrey White, the resident warrior at WINEP, who was a Defense Intelligence Agency Middle East officer, after an active duty military career. White's three-page memo reviewed the pros and cons of NATO or U.S. military intervention, proposed the idea of no-fly zones or liberated areas, covert arming of domestic opposition forces, and other means of foreign-assisted regime change. The concluding paragraph adequately summarized his recommendations:

"Unquestionably, military intervention in Syria on any significant scale would be a complicated and arduous course of action with some risks. But not intervening in the face of the regime's now fully revealed violent and repressive nature carries its own dangers and, likely, adverse consequences. Either way, the United States and its allies should begin discussing the issue publicly now—a vigorous debate would itself serve as an important signal to the regime."

Two days later, The Atlantic reprinted a similar call for regime change from Elliott Abrams, that originally appeared last week on the website of the Council on Foreign Relations. Abrams' screed lacked any of the pretensions of military expertise of White's paper, and peddled a much more aggressive mandate for immediate regime change in Syria. "The goal of U.S. policy," he wrote, "should be to end the violence, bring down the Assad regime, and lay the bases for a stable democratic system with protection for the Alawite, Kurdish, and Christian minorities." Abrams' recipe for regime change was reminiscent of the neo-con fantasies about Iraq prior to the March 2003 invasion—isolate Assad, win the Syrian business community over by imposing strict European and Turkish sanctions, recruit the generals to bring down Assad, and even consider the option of an Alawite coup d'etat against the Assad family.

The folly of these regime-change-in-a-box schemes is that they bear no resemblance to the actual situation on the ground, or the potential consequences of another NATO or U.S. military intervention into the Arab and Islamic world. Sane military sources have warned that another action like Libya, would bring the entire Islamic world out against the United States in particular, and would cause incalculable chaos on the global economic front. The entire region from the Eastern Mediterranean to South Asia could wind up in flames.