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Tue Sep 3, 2013, 10:04 AM

Report to NATO: 70% of Syrians support Assad

This is a big reason why I think we should stay out of Syria. (For those who can't or don't want to go to the link below, the percentage of the public opposed to Assad is estimated at about 10% right now.)

http://www.worldtribune.com/2013/05/31/nato-data-assad-winning-the-war-for-syrians-hearts-and-minds/

So we are outraged by these chemical attacks and mass killings, but apparently the Syrian public is not.

Even among that 10% opposition, some of them said that if the US attacks Assad, they too will actually switch sides, and fight on his side against us, because they will see it as defending their country under outside attack. (Wish I had saved the link to that statement but I didn't; it was in a linked article somewhere here on DU this past weekend.) I realize not all opposition may be feel that way, but I don't doubt that it's a real view among some.

When I saw that, it was a crystallizing moment to me, I thought "forget this, no way". We are far too hated there to get involved directly, and we should stay out of it. Syria is not Libya, and it is not the same as another nation might be some other time. I also didn't know until recently, because very little is being mentioned about it in the news, that the Saudis and Jordan and Dubai are assisting the rebels. If anything, we should be helping them in their efforts, and not acting directly ourselves. This is something that those in the local area should do, and it seems as if they are trying to.

Also, where is the pressure on Russia and China, Syria's friends, to do something to discourage Assad? For those who believe "looking bad" is a big thing, why don't we put a focus on making Russia look bad for doing nothing about this?

I agree that 100,000 dead and this use of chemical weapons warrants intervention, but not under these circumstances. There is no way that we should go into a situation in which we immediately become the enemy the moment we take action to help. This fight has to be won first by the Syrian people being outraged at Assad themselves, and next by sympathetic neighboring states.

There are indirect things we could do, and I think we should. But this is not our battle. Anyway that's one person's take on it.

43 replies, 2925 views

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Arrow 43 replies Author Time Post
Reply Report to NATO: 70% of Syrians support Assad (Original post)
Waiting For Everyman Sep 2013 OP
KittyWampus Sep 2013 #1
Waiting For Everyman Sep 2013 #2
maddezmom Sep 2013 #3
Waiting For Everyman Sep 2013 #6
David__77 Sep 2013 #4
Catherina Sep 2013 #14
MADem Sep 2013 #5
Waiting For Everyman Sep 2013 #7
MADem Sep 2013 #8
KittyWampus Sep 2013 #9
MADem Sep 2013 #12
KittyWampus Sep 2013 #13
MADem Sep 2013 #24
L0oniX Sep 2013 #10
Catherina Sep 2013 #11
Waiting For Everyman Sep 2013 #16
moondust Sep 2013 #15
ellisonz Sep 2013 #17
Waiting For Everyman Sep 2013 #22
ellisonz Sep 2013 #25
Waiting For Everyman Sep 2013 #27
ellisonz Sep 2013 #30
Waiting For Everyman Sep 2013 #32
ellisonz Sep 2013 #34
Waiting For Everyman Sep 2013 #37
ellisonz Sep 2013 #41
Waiting For Everyman Sep 2013 #43
David__77 Sep 2013 #33
ellisonz Sep 2013 #36
David__77 Sep 2013 #38
ellisonz Sep 2013 #39
David__77 Sep 2013 #42
woo me with science Sep 2013 #18
Xithras Sep 2013 #19
FBaggins Sep 2013 #20
brooklynite Sep 2013 #21
Waiting For Everyman Sep 2013 #23
blm Sep 2013 #26
Waiting For Everyman Sep 2013 #29
Daniel537 Sep 2013 #28
Waiting For Everyman Sep 2013 #31
The Straight Story Sep 2013 #35
Waiting For Everyman Sep 2013 #40

Response to Waiting For Everyman (Original post)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 10:07 AM

1. the article is 3 months old. Assad isn't currently "winning". It would be great to find something

more current.

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Response to KittyWampus (Reply #1)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 10:09 AM

2. Yes, I would too KW. nt

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Original post)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 10:11 AM

3. This was reported to NATO, not done by NATO

Here is the original article from what I can find:




The data, relayed to NATO over the last month, asserted that 70 percent of Syrians support the Assad legal government. Another 20 percent were deemed neutral and the remaining 10 percent expressed support for the foreign-backed rebels.

The sources said no formal polling was taken in Syria, racked by two years of civil war. They said the data came from a range of activists and independent organizations that were working in Syria, particularly in relief efforts.

The data was relayed to NATO as the Western alliance has been divided over whether to intervene in Syria. Britain and France were said to have been preparing to send weapons to the rebels.

A report to NATO said Syrians have undergone a change of heart over the last six months. The change was seen most in the majority Sunni community, which was long thought to have supported the revolt.
- See more at: http://en.alalam.ir/news/1480909#sthash.qlNfqNzo.dpuf

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Response to maddezmom (Reply #3)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 10:13 AM

6. Yes, the OP link said the same thing. nt

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Original post)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 10:11 AM

4. I don't think that's accurate.

But he definitely has significant popular support - certainly more so than Saddam Hussein did or Gaddafi had. Very different scenario.

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Response to David__77 (Reply #4)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 12:01 PM

14. Why? He had about 60% popular support in Jan 2012 before the Syrians caught a glimpse of the rebels

mowing down a 14 year old atheist boy for making a joke about the Prophet Mohammed and cannibalizing their victims on film.

The rebels, most of them foreign, haven't made themselves popular by their fanaticism, their atrocities that came up during the UK Parliament debate but never come up in the MSM, other than passing mentions.

Even under Bush, if a foreign power had decided to attack America, I would have resisted; national sovereignty isn't easily given up. I accept that the same goes for Syrians who are in no hurry to see Assad replaced after looking at our stunning success next door for what a future after Western intervention holds.

And with the French? The old colonial power stepping in again? The colonized don't forget the horror of colonization as quickly as the colonizers do.

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Original post)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 10:13 AM

5. The US is not in favor of regime change. The US favors "Assad change."

The US favors a Yemen Scenario as a solution for the fighting in Syria.


They have supported this solution for a couple of years now, along with the Arab League and others.

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Response to MADem (Reply #5)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 10:16 AM

7. But Yemen's government is cooperative with us though.

At least that's my understanding of it.

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Reply #7)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 10:47 AM

8. Well, Yemen is no paradise, even today. They continue to struggle, but

there's at least a lid on that pot.

I believe USA--and the Arab League--feel there is a hope in hell of bringing all parties to the table under one or the other of al-Assad's Vice Presidents...they are, perhaps, more pragmatic than the present dictator.

There will be no "sit down" or "power sharing" or "transition to democracy or some-other-form-of-representative-government" (even something like a "constitutional dictatorship" where there's limited redress) so long as al Assad and his gassy brother are running things. Absolute power has corrupted absolutely. Those two do not want to give that up, and they need to be shown the door in a "Grab your ass and run if you know what's good for you" kind of way.

That said, leaving a vacuum is not a good idea there, either, because the first idiots who reach the halls of power will try to grab the brass ring. Then the next bozos along will fight with them, and chaos will ensue. Having a VP (or both of them) take over and smooth everything over while the same bureaucracies grind away doing the business of government and keeping the streets swept and the lights on is a good thing. Then, perhaps, everyone can sit down and talk about the future of the country. The weirdos who are effective fighters but who are really fringe assholes won't do as well around a table--they won't be able to help doing the "My way or the highway" approach to negotiation, and that will turn the war weary people against them.

I think Syrians will find a certain appeal in a "reasonable person" approach to solving this mess. It's hard to know for sure, though. All I know is that the Gassy al Assad brothers have committed crimes against humanity on a large scale, and that's just not OK with the world. We can't ignore it.

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Response to MADem (Reply #8)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 11:14 AM

9. My request to you, if you have time in next few days, is to start an OP on this subject-

the possibility of a "Yemen type solution". It sounds in that scenario that Obama is doing some serious saber rattling trying to scare some sense into Assad personally.

But I don't have the links or knowledge to assert this possibility in a post.

It sure sounds plausible.

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Response to KittyWampus (Reply #9)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 11:24 AM

12. Actually, the hope was that he'd be persuaded to pack and leave long ago...but the ebb and flow of

rebel/opposition/fsa forces over the course of the last couple of years has emboldened him...and his pals in Russia told him some time ago they wouldn't take him into exile.

People here, unfortunately, don't want to know the USA's actual (and long-held) views on this subject. They'd much prefer to rail about the "MIC" and the "PTB" and warmongers and silliness. It's like pissing into the wind, I think. Emotional postings that are short on fact go over better--it's unfortunate.

I wonder where al Assad's wife and kids are, these days? I heard he took them to Teheran the other day for a wee visit...?

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Response to MADem (Reply #12)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 11:35 AM

13. His pals in Russia also don't seem to be delivering those fighter jets he hasn't paid for.

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Response to KittyWampus (Reply #13)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 01:24 PM

24. With 'friends' like that....

The Big Basher and his brother don't need many enemies.

Pootie loves to play these games, it's becoming pretty clear. It's all about Pootie the Puppeteer!

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Original post)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 11:16 AM

10. Their other option is theocratic rule most likely under Sharia law. n/t

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Original post)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 11:20 AM

11. They're waiting for us with flowers I tell ya! Yemen too can't wait to thank us for the drone love

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Response to Catherina (Reply #11)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 12:48 PM

16. We still have a problem with that "ends justifying the means" thing.

In this case, the means won't even achieve the end, except to send a message. I can't think of a worse reason for starting a war -- and that's what it would be. Iraq 2.0, on the "you break it you own it" doctrine.

It reminds me of the time my ex drove INTO a multi-car accident that was unfolding some space ahead of us, when he had ample time to stop and avoid it. Yeah, he wasn't very bright in a practical sense, and neither is this.

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Original post)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 12:25 PM

15. Gee, I thought it was 97%.

When the elder Assad died on on 10 June 2000, Bashar was appointed leader of the Ba'ath Party and the Army, and was elected president unopposed in what the government claimed to be a massive popular support (97.2% of the votes), after the Majlis al-Sha'ab (Parliament) swiftly voted to lower the minimum age for candidates from 40 to 34 (Assad's age when he was elected). On 27 May 2007, Bashar was approved as president for another seven-year term, with the official result of 97.6% of the votes in a referendum without another candidate.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bashar_al-Assad

Everybody just loves him!



"The people who cast the votes decide nothing. The people who count the votes decide everything." - Old Joe Stalin

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Original post)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 12:53 PM

17. Why are you posting wing-nut drivel on DU?

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http://www.worldtribune.com/about/

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Response to ellisonz (Reply #17)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 01:07 PM

22. Oh for pete's sake, get a grip.

This is not courtroom evidence, it's not even a precise poll (as stated very clearly in the article). Do you want to say this report was NOT submitted to NATO, as stated? Do you want to argue that the numbers aren't heavily in Assad's favor? If so, go right ahead. I'm posting my thoughts on why I'm against this action.

Another poster in this thread showed the same thing from another link. So what?

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Reply #22)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 01:25 PM

25. Really? Really, really? *pre-emptive facepalm*

I think you're referring to:

http://en.alalam.ir/news/1480909

I think that posters point was that it's sourced from IRANIAN STATE MEDIA:

Al-Alam is an Arabic news channel broadcasting from Iran and is owned by the state-owned media corporation Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB).
The network's political coverage tends to be the most popular; however, other subjects, such as commentaries, analysis, business and sports also get a share of the audience. Programs are broadcast for over 300 million Arabic-speaking people around the world, with large audiences in the Persian Gulf and Mediterranean regions. The satellite channel can be received in five continents.
Al-Alam has news bureaus in Tehran, Beirut and Baghdad. Unlike many other channels, Al-Alam can be viewed in Iraq without the use of a satellite receiver, as it is able to use a terrestrial transmitter close to the Iran-Iraq border.
An English language website, known as Alalam News, was launched on August 15, 2006, claiming to disseminate news in an impartial moderate manner.
Alalam News Network has launched its Persian Website in April, 2007 in order to cover merely the exclusive Alalam news in Persian language.

From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Al-Alam_News_Network


So what we have here is right-wing American media parroting Iranian state media -

EVERYTHING IS WUNDERBAR IN SYRIA!



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Response to ellisonz (Reply #25)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 01:30 PM

27. And you're still saying nothing to show that the fact isn't true.

Get back to me when and if you do.

Meanwhile, enjoy yourself on your diversionary ride beside the point, but I don't care that far about your "concern", to go there with you.

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Reply #27)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 01:44 PM

30. I rendered your argument baseless and laughably un-sourced.

I know on DU it can sometimes be hard to recognize when we've made mistakes, but your post is ridiculously premised.

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Response to ellisonz (Reply #30)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 01:58 PM

32. The premise is that a small minority are in oppostion to Assad.

Show me your sterling source to refute that.

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Reply #32)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 02:34 PM

34. Show me your source to establish it!

I don't have to prove a negative to disprove a false positive.

The reality is that direct evidence that could establish such an argument does not exist to the best of my knowledge.

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Response to ellisonz (Reply #34)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 02:41 PM

37. That's not what proving a negative means.

Show me a source for any number. If no source exists according to you, then it's your argument that is baseless.

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Reply #37)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 02:51 PM

41. lol - I'm coining a new term to describe such an argument - "anti-logic."

You, are deploying "anti-logic" to make a specious argument grounded in propaganda

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Response to ellisonz (Reply #41)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 02:58 PM

43. Fine, you keep looking for a stat that will refute the one given

and I'll continue to be unmoved until you find one.

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Response to ellisonz (Reply #17)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 02:31 PM

33. Here's something from the Guardian...

Of course this is some time ago... I do think the 70% figure is too high. But Assad certainly has significant support within Syria.

...

Alas, not in every case. When coverage of an unfolding drama ceases to be fair and turns into a propaganda weapon, inconvenient facts get suppressed. So it is with the results of a recent YouGov Siraj poll on Syria commissioned by The Doha Debates, funded by the Qatar Foundation. Qatar's royal family has taken one of the most hawkish lines against Assad – the emir has just called for Arab troops to intervene – so it was good that The Doha Debates published the poll on its website. The pity is that it was ignored by almost all media outlets in every western country whose government has called for Assad to go.

The key finding was that while most Arabs outside Syria feel the president should resign, attitudes in the country are different. Some 55% of Syrians want Assad to stay, motivated by fear of civil war – a spectre that is not theoretical as it is for those who live outside Syria's borders.

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2012/jan/17/syrians-support-assad-western-propaganda



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Response to David__77 (Reply #33)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 02:38 PM

36. Columnist, not the Guardian per say...

...and when you follow the link you get this methodology:

The poll conducted by YouGov Siraj questioned more than 1,000 people in the Arab world between December 14 and 19.

http://www.thedohadebates.com/news/item/index.asp?n=14312


So how many Syrian's were polled and how was sampling conducted?

Such sentiment certainly exists, but these polls are BS.

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Response to ellisonz (Reply #36)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 02:46 PM

38. OK, well I meant it was a better source.

Not so much because it's "Guardian," but a polling firm that has actually been retained by US media outlets. I agree that the poll is BS in the sense that all of these polls are, particularly in developing countries. And I would go so far as to state that I suspect it would overstate Assad's support because these developing country polls tend to overstate the support of whichever side has its support centered in the cities as opposed to the countryside.

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Response to David__77 (Reply #38)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 02:49 PM

39. So in short, it is not a good source. n/t

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Response to ellisonz (Reply #39)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 02:53 PM

42. It's better than no data. As polling data generally is.

I don't know the details of the other poll, but this one is by firm used by Western media agencies. I have no empirical basis to accept or reject it more than I do any other Yougov polls - they were close with the last presidential election. So I suppose perhaps the 55% number was a reasonably good one.

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Original post)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 12:56 PM

18. They will love our humanitarian bombs.

Who doesn't love to be bombed humanitarianly?

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Original post)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 01:00 PM

19. It's not that they "support Assad", but that they want him to win.

This is nothing new. As the rebellion has become increasingly fundamentalist and some of the goals of the modern insurgency have become more well known, many Syrian's have begun to fear the rebels more than the Assad regime. There have been a number of outside interviews with Assad soldiers over the last year, and most journalists have asked various soldiers why they fight for Assad. Most of the answers are some variety of "I don't like Assad, but the rebels want to make Syria a sharia state", or "I want democracy in Syria, but the rebels don't want democracy any more than Assad does", or the ever popular "I don't fight for Assad, I fight because the rebels want to destroy my country."

In spite of the negative American perception about Syria because of their poor relations with Israel, the reality is that Syria is a relatively affluent, modern, and progressive country by middle eastern standards. While a very small part of the rebellion would like to see Syria become a European-style democracy, most of the rebellion is aiming for something more akin to a Gulf-state style Islamist republic (similar to Yemen or pre-coup Egypt), and a substantial number are aiming for something far darker. The vast majority of Syrian's may not like Assad, but they like the pro-Saudi vision of the rebels even less.

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Original post)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 01:01 PM

20. When you torture/rape/execute those who oppose you...

... it's surprising to see any opposition show up in a pool.

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Original post)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 01:06 PM

21. They MUST love Assad: look at the results of their free and fair election in 2007

Yes 11,199,445 97.62%
No 19,653 0.17%
Invalid 253,059 2.21%

(hint: there was only one candidate)

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Response to brooklynite (Reply #21)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 01:10 PM

23. Since you edited, I'll edit too.


ETA: This is not election results, but estimates given by activists on the ground of what they see and hear there from Syrians... as clearly stated in the link.

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Original post)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 01:28 PM

26. Did they poll the 2 million refugees, too?

.

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Response to blm (Reply #26)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 01:39 PM

29. Maybe someone should be asking them.

I'd consider that a worthwhile and relevant thing to do.

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Original post)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 01:35 PM

28. Aside from the fact that no poll or survey done in Syria under the current conditions

should be in any way considered reliable, even if this were so, so fucking what? Majority rules now means rulers have a free pass to commit mass murder? I guess we should start putting civil liberties and freedom up for a vote here in the US as well.

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Response to Daniel537 (Reply #28)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 01:53 PM

31. What it means (to me) is,

when people don't want us there, maybe we should consider not going.

By the same token, that's why I supported the Libyan action because the people overwhelmingly wanted our help (and so did the world community).

This is a big, fat, glaringly obvious mistake about to happen here. And we have nothing to gain from it, but a lot to lose. That's the definition of "no win situation".

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Original post)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 02:37 PM

35. Report: 70% of germans support their leader, therefore he is good

Looking back through the news archives online, have not found that but if I do...wow it could have changed the world has we listened to that poll.

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Response to The Straight Story (Reply #35)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 02:50 PM

40. If it had been an internal civil war, maybe so.

Has Syria invaded any neighbors yet? Does Syria have a gigantic war machine to threaten the area with? Until it does on both counts, the WW2 analogies don't apply.

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