Old Mavericks at Foggy Bottom

I won’t shed a tear if present staff played a role in the mess of the Middle East and years of failed diplomacy. I realize when HRC left, “newcomer” John Kerry let e few staff “go” who were still in the mindset to avenge the 1983 Barracks bombing in Beirut. An Iran nuclear deal under HRC would have been unthinkable. Thanking Obama and Kerry …tough choices.

Approved For Release 2008/05/27: CIA-RDP88B00443R001404090133-0
14 September 1983



        Syria at present has a hammerlock on US interests both in Lebanon and
in the Gulf — through closure of Iraq’s pipeline thereby threatening Iraqi
internationalization of the war. The US should consider sharply escalating
the pressures against Assad
through covertly orchestrating simultaneous
military threats against Syria
from three border states hostile to Syria:
Iraq, Israel and Turkey.   Iraq, perceived to be increasingly desperate in the
Gulf War , would undertake limited (air) operations against Syria with a
sole goal of opening the pipeline.    Although opening war on a second front
against Syria poses a considerable risk to Iraq, Syria would also face a two-front
since it is already heavily engaged in the Bekaa, on the Golan and in
maintaining control over a hostile and resistive population inside Syria.

        Israel would simultaneously raise tensions along Syria’s Lebanon front
without actually going to war.   Turke, angered by Syria support to Armenian
terrorism, to Iraqi Kurds on Turkey’s Kurdish border areas and to Turkish
terrorists operating out of northern Syria, has often considered launching
unilateral military operations against terrorist camps in northern Syria
Virtually all Arab states would have sympathy for Iraq.

        Faced with three belligerent fronts, Assad would probably be forced to
abandon his policy of closure of the pipeline.   Such a concession would
relieve the economic pressure on Iraq, and perhaps force Iran to reconsider
bringing the war to an end
.   It would be a sharp blow to Syria’s prestige and
could effect the equation of forces in Lebanon

More like this

While fake news media obsesses over Trump, CIA document release exposes illegal schemes and global malfeasance

CIA online document dump

These and other declassified documents help to give us a better understanding of history and how the US operates, especially in places like the Middle East.

1) A Reagan-era CIA memo considered Syrian regime change through a Muslim Brotherhood insurgency (1986)

The following is from a 24-page formerly secret report entitled Syria: Scenarios of Dramatic Political Change. Its authors? A CIA unit then known as the “Foreign Subversion and Instability Center”. The report describes scenarios which are remarkably similar to events as they unfolded at the start of the war now gripping Syria:

    We believe that a renewal of communal violence between Alawis and Sunnis could inspire Sunnis in the military to turn against the regime. [p12]

    Remnants of the Muslim Brotherhood – some returning from exile in Iraq – could provide a core of leadership for the movement. Although the regime has the resources to crush such a venture, we believe brutal attacks on Sunni civilians might prompt large numbers of Sunni officers and conscripts to desert or stage mutinies in support of dissidents, and Iraq might supply them with sufficient weapons to launch a civil war. [pp20-21]

    In our view, US interests would be best served by a Sunni regime controlled by business-oriented moderates. Business moderates would see a strong need for Western aid and investment to build Syria’s private economy, thus opening the way for stronger ties to Western governments. [p24]

CIA Released – Syria: scenarios of dramatic political change (1986)


America’s Failure — and Russia and Iran’s Success — in Syria’s Cataclysmic Civil War | Joshua Landis |