National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley asked the Italians to help with regime change in Syria:

I have it on good authority that Steven Hadley, the director of the US National Security Council, called the President of the Italian senate to asked if he had a candidate to replace Bashar al-Asad as President of Syria. The Italians were horrified. Italy is one of Syria’s biggest trading partners so it seemed a reasonable place to ask! This is what Washington has been up to. — Joshua Landis

Let’s take this in. Hadley is calling the Italians, asking for a name as a replacement figurehead? Stunning.

This Stephen Hadley? Whose ass is about to be indicted? Who was a member of the infamous WHIG group that sold the Iaq war?
Who has his smudgy mitts all over the Niger forgery story and connived with Karl Rove to smear Joseph Wilson and his wife?

Yup, that Stephen Hadley. In BooMan’s “Holy Crap: My Pre-Indictment Stress Syndrome is Acting Up” he quotes Larry Johnson: “My friend told me that Hadley fully expects he will be indicted.”

We need to listen to Joshua Landis — a Fulbright Scholar currently living in Damascus and Beirut — who is an Assistant Professor of Middle Eastern Studies in the History Department and the School of International and Area Studies at the University of Oklahoma. Landis has become an essential source for newspapers, including The New York Times.

Landis’s has become one of my must-reads. He writes well. He travels to Beirut regularly. He talks to international reporters daily. And Landis talks to Syrians on the streets of Damascus.

We’re not playing “DOOM” here, for chrissakes. You have to know the territory. As Patrick Lang — a former DIA Chief of the Middle East and Terrorism as well as first professor of Arabic Languages at West Point — pointed out last night here in “Syria and the Stone Wall“:

The Syrian government has a long established and time tested methodology for dealing with external demands placed upon it. It ignores them.

Further, as Joshua Landis logically notes, what can Syria possibly do to placate the Bush administration? “Bashar cannot possibly do what Washington is demanding of it — give family members to an international court. My guess is that the regime will stick together on this.”

But, really, none of that matters!

Cheney and Hadley are hellbent on going after Syria:

US ‘seeks new Syrian leader’ as pressure mounts

By Guy Dinmore in Washington

Financial Times

October 9 2005

As it steps up pressure on Damascus, the US is actively seeking an alternative who would take over from President Bashar al-Assad, according to sources close to the Bush administration.

Washington has consulted its allies in an inter-agency search co-ordinated by Stephen Hadley, the president’s national security adviser. The US is also said to be considering military strikes on the Syrian border in response to its alleged support for Iraqi insurgents.

Turkish Press reports that ”both Ankara and western capitals [are debating] by whom al-Assad can be replaced. This matter was also discussed during (U.S. President Bush’s national security adviser) Hadley’s visit to Ankara.”

Professor Landis has come into possession of a “most extraordinary letter from Syria’s Ambassador in Washington Imad Mustapha to Congresswoman Sue Kelly.” The letter from Rep. Kelly and 100 House members is highly critical of Syria. Prof. Landis has posted the ambassador’s reply, [editor’s note, by susanhu] [The ambassador’s reply letter to Congress is up now.] and makes these key observations:

[The letter from 100 members of Congress ] is a demonstration of the US government’s failure to appreciate how it is being railroaded by the administration into a confrontation with Syria. One must read Imad Mustapha’s response, copied here, to appreciate just how the railroading is taking place.

Congress is falling for another war trap? Looks like it:

For over a year Syria has been trying to cooperate with the West on the Iraq border, on the issue of terrorism finance, on the issue of stopping Jihadists from getting into Syria, on intelligence sharing, and on stabilizing Iraq.

Washington has consistently refused to take “Yes” as an answer. Why? The only credible reason is because Washington wants regime change in Syria. The US administration is sacrificing American soldiers in Iraq in order to carry out its program of “reforming the Greater Middle East.” Two US policies are clashing head to head – the one is stabilizing Iraq and the other is the reform of the greater Middle East. President Bush is placing his democracy policy over his Iraq policy. This is costing American and Iraqi lives.

The world press has failed to get this story, although it has been staring them in the face for months. Human rights activists in Syria have documented for a long time how Syria is arresting Islamists, cracking down on Syrians who go to Iraq to fight by arresting their family members and jailing the fighters when they return from Iraq. Read Razan Zeitouneh’s story about Syria’s “Preemptive War” against Islamists here. The Syrian secret police have been terrorizing would be terrorists in Syria for many months now. The US has cut off all intelligence sharing with Syria despite repeated Syrian attempts to cooperate on this most important issue. Rumsfeld refused a Syria delegation of top border officials permission to meet with their Iraq and American counterparts just two months ago. Read the story here.

I’ve read all this before, and quoted sources, that verify what Landis says. Syria has conducted a ruthless crackdown against “Jihadists” — but none of that matters to Bush’s war cabal.

As Patrick Lang wrote here in “ Say it isn’t so… Please.:

Hey folks, here we go. This guy is nobody in Syria but the Neocon, Jacobin crowd are pushing him as a neo-Lincolnesque figure.


(Yes. It’s true. This is from MEMRI. Have a ball with this.)


“Leader of the Opposition Reform Party of Syria: “The Syrian Regime Is Nurturing Terrorism”; “We in Syria Need Peace More than the Israelis”


In an interview with the Kuwaiti daily Al-Siyassa, Farid Al-Ghadri, leader of the opposition Reform Party of Syria (, harshly criticized the Syrian regime, saying that “its crimes are more brutal than Saddam Hussein’s.” He accused the Syrian regime of nurturing terrorism, and expressed his support for a peace treaty with Israel.

The following are excerpts: …

And what may become Bush’s choices to take over Syria?

As Patrick Lang wrote here in “The End of Ghazi Kanaan“:

Why is he gone? Smart money has always been wagered that Rafik Hariri’s assassination was the result of a cabal among Lebanese and Syrian security officials who feared Hariri’s return to power by election, this time as a “reform” candidate with the full backing of the Bush Administration and, of course, of Chirac’s France. In previous iterations of Hariri as PM, Rafik was not a “reform” figure. The circumstances in which downtown Beirut was re-built under Hariri’s supervision by the company “Solidere” would not bear close inspection. A lot of money was made by Rafik and his associates in this and other business enterprises.

Kanaan made a “farewell” call to a Lebanese Radio station before he died today. In that interview he said that it was true that Rafik Hariri had been paying him off when both had ruled in Lebanon, but at the same time he said that he, Kanaan, had not been “responsible” for the bad things that had happened in Beirut over the years. I suppose that was a reference to the ultimate culpability of the late Hafez al-Assad.

Was Kanaan’s death a case of “assisted suicide?” …

Was it Bush’s endorsement that doomed him? Could be.

Perhaps all that will save Syria will be wide-ranging indictments by Patrick Fitzgerald that paralyze Hadley’s — and Cheney/Rice/Rumsfeld’s — momentum.

(All emphases mine.)

0 0 votes
Article Rating