For those of you who don’t know me, I am a Political Science major that specializes in Comparative Middle Eastern Politics. I have not only devoted the last four years of my life to understanding and finding solutions for the many problems facing the Middle East contemporarily – including learning Arabic – but, I will be continuing such devotion for the next two years as I get my Master’s in Intelligence with a concentration in Strategic Intelligence. Now, I know what you’re thinking: big whoop, right? Anyone can study the Middle East and spout of their credentials without actually knowing a darn thing. However, on top of my credentials listed above, I have been published in an academic journal for research on the Legalities of Accepting and Refusing Syrian Refugees, conducted original research on American Public Opinion on Syrian Refugees, and currently have a research grant to research and test for ISIS Propaganda that I plan to continue for my Master’s thesis. Now that you know a little bit more about me, hopefully you will understand when I say that I am quite frankly pissed at the mainstream media for the way that they are portraying the recent addition of boots on the ground in Syria in an effort to take back Raqqa.
Before I even begin to address my disenchantment with media political commentators, let’s back track to what inspired the recent increase in talking heads spewing partisan falsities about ISIS. Assad stated in a recent interview published on Saturday that the recent addition of US troops in Syria would be considered “invaders”. Really the only concrete reason I can see that political commentators seem so deeply upset and/or offended by this statement is that they are utterly and completely ignorant to international law. Even though Assad has so very many faults that we can address another time, he is very much correct when he calls US troops invaders. Unilaterally placing troops or using drones uninvited in a sovereign nation is, by every definition, illegal. Especially when we take into account the fact that Syria and Russia invited the US to work with them multilaterally to tackle the ISIS issue. The ignorance of these commentators on the basic foundations of international law already gives the impression that they are unqualified to discuss this issue.
I know one of the first things you’re thinking right now is that “wait, we’re working with Turks, Kurds, and Arab Sunnis in a multinational effort!”. Here’s the deal: this could be considered maybe bilateral at best with Turkey. Let’s not forget, however, that Turkey just recently experienced a coup and is not currently our strongest ally in the Middle East. The Kurds and the general group of Arab Sunnis are not sovereign countries. In fact, the Kurds are unlikely to ever gain territory and international recognition of sovereignty as a country.
I had to set aside a whole other paragraph to address the severe idiocy of anyone that says we should just turn the area over to Arab Sunnis. The swinging of the pendulum between the two religious extremes is why we are in this situation to begin with. After issues with Sunnis and the Ba’athist regime in Iraq, Obama endorsed Shi’a al-Maliki who created a climate favorable for violent retaliation against Sunni Muslims within Iraq. A Sunni group – whose leadership were previously Ba’athist – rose up to retaliate and take control in the region. This group we have grown to know as ISIS. Now these political commentators are saying that we need to place more Arab Sunnis in power? Obviously those talking heads are filled with nothing more than air as they clearly have no idea the lunacy they are preaching.
Another reason why these commentators have totally lost my respect is that they think that boots on the ground in Syria is just going to be hunky dory. Here is a list of all of the reasons why they are wrong:
- Invading a sovereign nation without their consent or a resolution from the UN Security Council is an international war crime and illegal in the World Court.
- Reignition of a cold war between the US and Russia – not that it really ended to begin with.
- Collapse of the UN Security Council – and possibly the UN as a whole – with both the US and Russia having veto power.
- Civilian casualties – even though political commentators don’t believe there will be any in Syria. Can you tell the difference between a civilian and a guerrilla militant? I can’t and neither can most troops.
- The fact that terrorist organizations in the Middle East are like the mythical Greek creature the Hydra: when you cut off one head, two will grow back in its place. Just as ISIS grew out of the Ba’athists.
- Gulf War.
- Second Gulf War.
Now, take into account that there are far more effective methods of controlling and eradicating ISIS such as choking their food supply with Human Rights Trade Agreements.
It seems that all mainstream media, even the comforting and secure conservative news outlet Fox News, is fake news. The purposely choose political commentators that will spout off the agreed upon narrative – not commentators that actually desire to educate the American electorate about current events both foreign and domestic. I expect a little more integrity with my news. Perhaps that benchmark is set too high.