As TCTH says, does it matter? I think we need the truth, then decide, so yes.
Was the gas attack an attack or an explosion of gas containers hit by bombs? It would be nice to know if the tasked satellite over Syria caught the Syrians loading those planes from a different depot, rather than the usual conventional bomb armories. There was a hint we know the exact flight and the actually saw that flight being loaded up. I say share and let us decide if Trump is being played.
President Trump earned neocon applause for his hasty decision to attack Syria and kill about a dozen Syrians, but his rash act has all the earmarks of a “wag the dog” moment.
Just two days after news broke of an alleged poison-gas attack in northern Syria, President Trump brushed aside advice from some U.S. intelligence analysts doubting the Syrian regime’s guilt and launched a lethal retaliatory missile strike against a Syrian airfield.
Trump immediately won plaudits from Official Washington, especially from neoconservatives who have been trying to wrestle control of his foreign policy away from his nationalist and personal advisers since the days after his surprise victory on Nov. 8.
There is also an internal dispute over the intelligence. On Thursday night, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said the U.S. intelligence community assessed with a “high degree of confidence” that the Syrian government had dropped a poison gas bomb on civilians in Idlib province.
But a number of intelligence sources have made contradictory assessments, saying the preponderance of evidence suggests that Al Qaeda-affiliated rebels were at fault, either by orchestrating an intentional release of a chemical agent as a provocation or by possessing containers of poison gas that ruptured during a conventional bombing raid.
One intelligence source told me that the most likely scenario was a staged event by the rebels intended to force Trump to reverse a policy, announced only days earlier, that the U.S. government would no longer seek “regime change” in Syria and would focus on attacking the common enemy, Islamic terror groups that represent the core of the rebel forces.
The source said the Trump national security team split between the President’s close personal advisers, such as nationalist firebrand Steve Bannon and son-in-law Jared Kushner, on one side and old-line neocons who have regrouped under National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster, an Army general who was a protégé of neocon favorite Gen. David Petraeus.
Here’s the problem with conspiracies of this proportion- it involves too many working parts. If it is true about the gas being rebel held, it may be more likely Syria figured out where it was and dropped bombs on it, breaking open the containers. WE need to know that and give that information to Trump and our citizens. It may not make a difference, or it may force BOTH SIDES to give the chemicals up.
But what do we really know anymore?
What we do know is ISIS seized chemicals from a warehouse bunker in Mosul. As a double killing of liberal memes; the bunker housed ALL of the WMDs Americans found in Iraq up to today, which was a bunch. They were planning to burn or dispose of the chemicals, which is not as easy as 007 would make you think, and never got around to getting rid of all of them. So ISIS has them and has used them in this current war.
We know Syria has chemical weapons. We don’t know, but suspect, the rebels got a hold of some of them.
We know Assad has them and has probably used them before. In fact, the carefully parsed lie told by the Obama administration representatives proves they knew the Russians were screwing with them, but they didn’t care.
We also know the Russians are very good at putting out well designed false information to undermine the truth. The classic one from the eighties is the “CIA created AIDS to kill black people.” That stupid idea actually stuck and is cited over and over by people who do not use critical thinking. Is the real “false flag” the Russians saying the Syrians didn’t do it?
So as Rumsfeld famously pointed out in his “Known Knowns” speech.
Does Trump trust his intelligence to be righteous and correct? Does he harbor suspicions that the same people willingly spying on him to prevent him from winning might be feeding him crap to make him jump in the direction of THEIR choice? If he finds out they are lying, will he expose them and then fire/arrest them?
All good questions. But let’s assume Assad or his people are idiots and arrogant and did this. What choice does a nation, which has the capability to send a message, do? For millennials, like the one who compared being gassed to death as equal to being shot (for the record it is not), there is always an excuse to do nothing.
There is a forming policy in the Trump administration where they will force Syria to split apart and leave the Western edge to Assad. That way the Russians keep the ports, pipeline and airfields. Syrians get the rest to rebuild- 0f course after the Syrians clear out the ISIS fighters. If so, maybe this is Trump just jump starting the change in direction.
We cannot make a habit of bombing Syria over policy issues. Concentrate on pushing ISIS into the Russians and let the hammer crush it against the anvil.