Alexander Mercouris, ‘no-fly zone’, Jabhat al Nusra, John Kerry and Boris Johnson, Lavrov in Lausanne completely immoveable, Syrian opposition, the Aleppo offensive, The Duran, the regime change project in Syria is dead, U.S. military option rejected
[Hat tip to: the real Syrian Free Press]
Source: The Duran
Press conferences by John Kerry and Boris Johnson following Western foreign ministers’ meeting in London confirms military options to save Jihadi fighters have been abandoned and that the Western powers have accepted that the Syrian government with Russian support will recapture eastern Aleppo.
As might be expected, the West’s public acceptance of defeat in Aleppo came quietly, but it has now come.
The events of the last few week can be summed up quickly.
Following the US climbdown in the first week of October after the Russian warning of Russia’s readiness to shoot down US aircraft carrying out bombing strikes against Syrian bases, a final attempt was made to scare and embarrass the Russians into getting the Syrians to call the Aleppo offensive off.
This centred on a failed and actually farcical attempt to isolate and embarrass the Russians at the UN Security Council (discussed in detail here), combined with empty threats to bring war crimes prosecutions against the Russians, and more empty threats of further sanctions against individual Russian officials (additional sectoral sanctions are out of the question).
A meeting of the US National Security Council took place on Friday, with some US officials telling the media anonymously that military options would again be discussed and presented to Obama for his consideration.
This was a completely empty claim since Obama had publicly rejected these same military options the previous week. The same US officials were therefore obliged to admit that it was “extremely unlikely” that Obama would approve these options, and he would probably “not make a decision”.
Meanwhile Boris Johnson, Britain’s hapless Foreign Secretary, appeared to float an idea for a “no bombing zone”, though typically he never did so clearly or openly and most of the details had to be provided in off the record conversations to the British media.
The idea behind this “no bombing zone” was that the US and the Western powers would unilaterally announce a prohibition on bombing by the Syrians and the Russians in any part of Syria. In the event that the Syrians or the Russians disregarded this announcement and continued bombing, the US and the Western powers would retaliate by launching strikes against Syrian bases and military facilities where no Russians were believed to be present.
It is not clear who was the originator of this plan but its half-baked nature suggests it was probably Boris Johnson himself.
The “no bombing zone” is simply a “no fly zone” without the aerial bombardment. The US has never imposed a “no fly zone” without an aerial bombardment. We have a detailed discussion of what a “no fly zone” involves and why an aerial bombardment is an integral part of it from no less a person than Hillary Clinton herself.
The US military would never agree to enforce a “no fly zone” (or a “no bombing zone”) without an aerial bombardment since by failing (in US parlance) to “degrade” the Syrian air defences through an aerial bombardment the US would be placing its aircraft and pilots enforcing the “no fly zone” (or “no bombing zone”) at risk.
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