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Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Syria: follow the money

There is lots of waffle in Westminster circles about Syria, military action/intervention, chemical weapons and a whole lot more, but what is it really all about?

The UK government and quite a few others are up in arms about supposed chemical weapons used by the Assad government and they may be right about them, but they were less up in arms when rebel forces allegedly used sarin bombs four months ago. But why would they want to get involved in a civil war in a foreign country thousands of miles away?

On the one hand we have a Russian backed Alawite-regime that is strongly allied to Iran, while on the other we have a Sunni-muslim rebel/opposition front, financially supported by Qatar and Saudi, but mostly Qatari.

Neither side is likely to be particularly friendly to the west.  Anything that keeps Russia and Iran away from the Mediterranean is probably a good thing while the rebels are filled with revolutionary elements that are abhorrent to their sponsors, so do we really want to help either side?

Well to get the answer we have to look at the interests of the sponsors, particularly the Russians and the Qataris.  The Qataris would like to build a gas pipeline to Europe, which would reduce the cost of gas in Europe and would eliminate the Russian monopoly on supply.  The Russians obviously would not like that, and thus happily support the Assad regime that is willing to keep out the Qatari pipeline.

So there you have it.  What this is really about is that both the Qataris and the Russians are quite willing to oversee the deaths of 100,000 civilians in Syria in order to maximise their respective gas revenues.

However parliament votes tomorrow, they will be focussing on the wrong targets.

1 comment:

Demetrius said...

Yesterday I asked the question whether Cameron might march on Moscow but it is good to see the reason why he might want to do this, albeit not directly. Bring back coal and steam.