Tænk hvis nogen havde lært noget

Syriens præsident: De farligste IS-ledere i vores region er fra Skandinavien

Det er nok en tanke værd dét al-Assad hér siger. I foråret 2013 talte jeg – lige efter daværende udenrigsminister Villy Søvndal – på en konference arrangeret af Udenrigsministeriet og Dansk Institut for Internationale Studier, DIIS. Jeg advarede mod alt hvad der på den tid blev gjort af en gruppe lande, inkl Danmark, der kaldte sig “Syriens Venner” og blindt ville støtte oppositionelle mod al-Assad.

De fulgte den snæversynede idé at hvis én i en konflikt er fæl så er de(n) andre gode. Det var også dem, der mente at al-Assad var sådan én, man bare ikke taler med.

Idag véd vi så hvem vore venner stort set var. Og den fæle er nu en person, som selv USA mener man ikke kan ignorere – vort bedste kort, faktisk. Og han fortæller os tankevækkende ting.

Gad vide hvor mangde nordboer der er rejst derned for at kæmpe – fordi de fik at høre af Syriens Venner at det var godt at bare bekæmpe al-Assad.

Konklusion: Af Jugoslavien, 9/11, Afghanistan, Irak, Libyen og Syrien har vor statsadministration og politiker – og 90% af vore journalister – intet lært.

Ikke en gang simple tommelfingerregler som a) at der blandt komplekse internationale konflikter ikke findes én hvor alle de gode findes på den ene side og alle de onde på den anden – og b) at ingen konflikt kun har to sider.

Gad endelig vide hvor mange flere, der ville være live i dagens Syrien hvis nogen havde lært bare disse to ting og praktiseret dem dengang.

Commenting on Iranian president Rouhani’s statement

The UN Yemen mediator resigns – conspicuously

UN Yemen envoy Jamal Benomar resigns amid crisis – Al Jazeera English

How conspicuous that Benomar – whom I happen to know a little bit – is choosing this moment to resign. It’s only a two days after the UN Security Council imposed an arms embargo on the Houthis but coming out in de facto support of the Saudi-led coalition bombing of Yemen by not even mentioning it or its 1200 airstrikes till now.

The resolution was drafted by Jordan – a member of the bombing coalition and thereby a party to the conflict.

My nasty mind tells me that Benomar has recognised that there is no basis for his decent, all-inclusive mediation efforts under such circumstances and with such UN Security Council biases.

A more UN-loyal Secretary-General would have called the Council immediately after the Saudi-coalition started its war and have prevented such biases in the name of the world organisation. He obviously takes order – which he shouldn’t according to the UN Charter.

If so, let the U.S. isolate itself

Iran says nuclear deal depends on lifting of sanctions | Reuters

This is a timely reminder to those who believe the Iran nuclear deal can be reduced to and hinges upon the deal between Congress and Obama. Says Iranian President Rouhani: “We are in talks with the major powers and not with the Congress,” Rouhani said.

I draw three conclusions:

1. If there will be no deal, the main reason is the US and Israel.
2. The other 4P+1 countries should let the U.S. isolate itself and sign the deal with Iran. Everybody should then normalise relations with Iran and speed up all kinds of co-operation ASAP.
3. The punishment of the Iranian people has been unjustifiable from Day One and their suffering must end.

Nazi-Islamisme – som om ordet islamisme ikke var tilstrækkeligt modbydeligt

Hvor lavt kan danske politikere synke etisk og intellektuelt? Hvis der fandtes en tåbeparagraf ville d’herrer Pape og Khader blive dømt på den – det er klart efter deres indlæg i Aarhus Stiftstidende.

Islamisme er et modbydeligt ord – fordi det direkte sammenkæder en religions navns med terrorisme hvilket f.eks. ikke er tilfældet med ordet buddhisme. Dermed gøres de to ting i praksis til ét fedt.

Nu lægges “Nazi” så til med en horribel populistisk forklaring. Jeg kommer til at tænke på den norske filosof Harald Ofstads fremragende bog for mange år siden: “Vor foragt for svaghed. Nazismens normer og vore egne” (1971).

Gad vide hvilket ramaskrig og hvor mange programmer Deadline m.fl. ville bruge på et par kvægpander, der mente vi alle bedre kunne forstå det hele hvis man om Israel og/eller jøder brugte ordet “Nazionisme”?

Ignoring May 9 in Russia – another Western conflict-management blunder

The Guardian reports that Western top leaders are going to snub the commemoration in Moscow of the 70th Anniversary of the Allied Victory over Hitler Germany – on May 9.
That they don’t want to attend a huge military parade is quite understandable, neither would I.
But remembering the more than 20 million Russians who died in World War 2 would be more than appropriate for Western leaders in light of both their own people and the Russian people. Thus Angela Merkel is doing the right thing.
This would have been a good informal opportunity for dialogues between Russian, Eastern and Western leaders in this particularly tense situation – but the latter are so much better at escalation, pinpricking and self-righteous policies than at conflict-resolution and reconciliation. Short-sighted and utterly unhelpful, I must say.

The alleged Russian sub was a civilian plastic boat. And. . . ?

Swedish Admiral Admits ‘Russian Submarine’ Was Actually Civilian Boat” • The Moscow Times

One wonders how many Swedes were seduced to believe that this was a Russian thing? And how many million dollars that search cost – and what effect such a “mistaken” photo had in terms of strengthening the Swedish military, increasing the budget and having the Nordic countries gang up to “deter” Russia. Good Lord, pure fearology – but with a purpose.

We shall now await an apology from all Swedish media which without the slightest research just reproduced the military information at the time, no questions asked about the basics.

This Admiral and his revelation will probably not go out over the whole world but those who see it, I guess, will think: Oh how the Swedish military is making a fool of itself. First such a stupid photo, then 6 months to reveal the blunder! (This story was also reported in Swedish by Dagens Nyheter).