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William Hague: we cannot rule out military action on Syria

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    (Original post by L i b)
    I'd prefer if you could demonstrate more than a childlike grasp of international relations before insulting your betters.
    Sarcasm is hard to grasp over the internet so I will forgive you. Having spent the last three years studying IR, it is regrettable that I have regressed.

    (Original post by Publius)
    I would prefer it if you rephrased it to 'i don't know what the f*ck i'm talking about'.
    Oh and you do? As far as I can see you've contributed what to this discussion...oh nothing?!
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    (Original post by Perseveranze)
    Just supply them weapons and they'll handle the rest.
    What the ****? You complain about western forces in Iraq and Afghanistan but yet, you openly support them supplying the Free Syrian Army Al Qaeda terrorists with weapons and I presume you supported the Libyan invasion.

    We dont want sectarianism in Syria and the FSA are sectarian forces. Pull your finger out and stop working with these western forces.
    (Original post by L i b)
    I'd prefer if you could demonstrate more than a childlike grasp of international relations before insulting your betters.
    Truth hurts doesnt it.
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    I can't help feeling that Syria is going to turn into another Bosnia or Kosovo, in fact in some ways it could be argued it has. The international community dragged their feet regarding Kosovo and even now there are still questions arising over the legality of the military intervention there. Even the one of the NATO Generals (Clark I think) stated that (despite the fact the international community tried to justify it under the flag of humanitarian intervention) that Kosovo was merely a stage in which they could show the power of NATO. I would prefer to see things sorted diplomatically...though I don't hold out much hope for such an outcome.
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    I really don't know. Military intervention will lead to disaster though.
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    My prediction is that within the next 10 years, all of the following will happen in the Middle East:

    - Libya-style intervention by US & UK in Syria, resulting in rebels overthrowing Assad.

    - War breaks out between a Muslim-brotherhood controlled Egypt and Israel. End result is an Israeli military victory and Israel permanently annexes the Sinai Peninsular.

    - US invasion of Iran. Requires so many troops to occupy that the US has to re-introduce the draft.
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    (Original post by Super Cicero)
    My prediction is that within the next 10 years, all of the following will happen in the Middle East:

    - Libya-style intervention by US & UK in Syria, resulting in rebels overthrowing Assad.

    - War breaks out between a Muslim-brotherhood controlled Egypt and Israel. End result is an Israeli military victory and Israel permanently annexes the Sinai Peninsular.

    - US invasion of Iran. Requires so many troops to occupy that the US has to re-introduce the draft.
    - Evil professor Drydenberg blows up the sun.
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    (Original post by ak137)
    What the ****? You complain about western forces in Iraq and Afghanistan but yet, you openly support them supplying the Free Syrian Army Al Qaeda terrorists with weapons and I presume you supported the Libyan invasion.

    We dont want sectarianism in Syria and the FSA are sectarian forces. Pull your finger out and stop working with these western forces.
    There's a difference between supplying arms and invading the nation. And no, the free-Syrian Army are not terrorists, where are you getting this info from?

    And it's not about sectarianism (just because Alawite/Christians/Shia's are helping Assad does not mean they're randomly being targetted), it's about taking down Assad, which is going to happen one way or another. Giving up resistance/arms is not happening though.

    There are videos of some alawite's even joining the free Syrian army (though it's suitable I don't post them here).
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    (Original post by Perseveranze)
    There's a difference between supplying arms and invading the nation. And no, the free-Syrian Army are not terrorists, where are you getting this info from?

    And it's not about sectarianism, it's about taking down Assad, which is going to happen one way or another. Giving up resistance/arms is not happening though.
    I cant believe you're saying this. You cant choose to work with the west when you feel like it!! You're either pro-intervention, pro-supplying arms/money or anti-intervention, anti-supplying arms/money. There is no in-between.

    They work with Israel and the west for gods sake, you know, the same guys that suppress Palestinians? It is about sectarianism, the FSA are terrorists because they kill christians and other minorities in Syria. FSA regularly holds the Al Qaeda flag too. They are also funded by undemocratic regimes (on the irony), like KSA, UAE, and Qatar.

    If "resistance" isnt given up, the government will crush it. Well, it already has, seeing as the FSA are just a bunch of Islamists with Kalashnikovs who think that'll take down a tank.

    Im not pro-Assad, neither am I pro-FSA.
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    I'm still not convinced that what the Western media is reporting is what is actually happening. I'm pretty sure, for example, that there a lot of Syrians who would rather Assad stayed in power because the only alternatives they can see (Muslim fundamentalist government or Russian / Iranian occupation) are worse.

    In addition, I don't believe that the UN knows what it wants to achieve in Syria: keep Assad in power and the killing will go on; remove Assad and there's every chance that his replacement will be even more anti-Western; avoid getting involved but send arms to the rebels and, with their bottomless Western arsenal and Assad's bottomless Russian arsenal, the fighting could go on for all eternity. Besides, which rebels? The opposition is fragmented and disjointed and, should the fighting descend into a civil war, it could easily become a three-way (and very messy) conflict.
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    I think we should intervene (Britain along with the other westies).

    The fact is I'd much rather be the country that's hated for trying to help, Than the one that sits back and watch's the situation sort itself while people are still being killed.

    We're living in a world where if you don't help you're selfish and if you do help, you get could colonialists and all other names so....
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    (Original post by ak137)
    I cant believe you're saying this. You cant choose to work with the west when you feel like it!! You're either pro-intervention, pro-supplying arms/money or anti-intervention, anti-supplying arms/money. There is no in-between.

    They work with Israel and the west for gods sake, you know, the same guys that suppress Palestinians? It is about sectarianism, the FSA are terrorists because they kill christians and other minorities in Syria. FSA regularly holds the Al Qaeda flag too. They are also funded by undemocratic regimes (on the irony), like KSA, UAE, and Qatar.

    If "resistance" isnt given up, the government will crush it. Well, it already has, seeing as the FSA are just a bunch of Islamists with Kalashnikovs who think that'll take down a tank.

    Im not pro-Assad, neither am I pro-FSA.
    First point I can happily agree with (it doesn't really matter, since Saudi and other nations already supply the FSA), second I cannot. You have too many misconceptions about FSA.

    1. Al Qaeda does not make up FSA (just because a few propoganda statements from BBC suggest it, does not make it true, because it's not). Even if a couple of AQ affiliates were fighting in the army, this in no way suggests they represent the FSA's ideals - that army is strictly joined to fighting and taking down a tyrant, it has every right to and should not be mis-interpreted because of a few "flag" pictures.

    2. Most of the FSA are Syrian army defects. Who only defected because they found the Assad regime brutal/oppressive - they would not be joining the FSA if it was equally so.

    3. Christians are not randomly killed/targeted like you're putting it. Yes, those who do go around supporting Assad and putting obstacles in the way of FSA, are indeed taken down. But it has ZERO to do with them being Christians, as anyone who does the above is seen as an enemy by FSA.

    Cannot blame the FSA for some Christians stupidity in supporting a tyrant.

    4. It is difficult to see how the FSA is going to get crushed.

    - Mujahideen (many with the right intentions) are travelling all across the world to do Jihad in Syria. Just recently reports came of 600 Libyans crossing the border to join FSA. The situation is becomming similar to that of the Bosnian war.

    - Many Syrian Army defects are joining the FSA and their legitimate cause. Thus with the above, the FSA is only increasing.

    - Saudi, Bahrain and many other nations are supplying the FSA with arms, so it's not like they'll get a shortage any time soon.

    - Whilst Assad's army is suffering from defects, there's a lot of international pressure on Russia/China (the two out of the three main power house supporters) from giving any assistance to Assad, and it is likely they will accept this.

    - Support for FSA is growing from the wider communities, as the Houla atrocities serve to further legitimize their causes.

    So the way I see it, Assad is likely to be pushed into a corner and eventually toppled. The chances of a FSA victory are increasing every day.

    As for peace, that's not going to happen for as long as Assad is in power. Reading this should allow you to understand why the FSA was created and what its purpose has been all along -

    [Source: The Times]

    The children of Houla were not killed by random shelling. The UN yesterday revealed that they were murdered one by one. The militia came in the night armed with knives and guns, and the young victims were executed with a bullet to the head or a knife to the throat.

    One photograph shows a cherubic baby girl, no older than 2, with a tiny gold ear-stud. She is wrapped in a white shroud. Half her skull has been hacked or blown away. A saucer of bone juts from a bloody gash in what remains of her head.

    Another shows what appears to be a boy of perhaps 6 or 7. The blanket in which he is wrapped has fallen away to expose a bare white shoulder. He looks as if he is sleeping, but the back of his head has been lopped off like the top of a boiled egg. His brain lies on the blanket behind him.

    A third shows a pretty young girl staring upwards, her mouth slightly open as if smiling. Above her right eye there is a large, bloody bullet hole surrounded by a mess of flesh and bone.

    The pictures go on, some mercifully out of focus, most far too shocking to print in The Times though our failure to do so spares the Assad regime.

    There is a baby wearing nothing but a nappy, seemingly untouched except that it lacks an arm. Another young girl wearing a blood-soaked T-shirt with the word “Baby” or “Dolly” written on it has had her jaw shot away. A man carries the body of a child with only half a head remaining.

    There are children — brothers, sisters, cousins? — wearing blood-drenched shorts and T-shirts with their eyes gouged out, with their faces slashed by knives or with neat bullet holes in their torsos. One girl has had her nose and cheek sliced off. A couple of the children lying on the floor of a makeshift mortuary appear to have had their hands bound.

    These are some of the 49 children killed in the Houla massacre, not by random shelling but knifed to death or shot at close range by President Assad’s Shabiha thugs. They were summarily executed, the United Nations said yesterday.

    At least 108 civilians were killed in total, 34 of them women, in a slaughter of infants and innocents with few modern precedents. Only 20 of the deaths could be attributed to artillery or tank fire, Rupert Colville, a spokesman for the UN Commissioner for Human Rights, said.

    “What is very clear is that this was an absolutely abominable event that took place in Houla, and at least a substantial part of it was summary executions of civilians, women and children. At this point it looks like entire families were shot in their houses,” he added.

    The exact sequence of events is still unclear, but it appears that after midday prayers last Friday soldiers manning a checkpoint opened fire to disperse protesters in Taldou, the largest of the cluster of predominantly Sunni villages that make up Houla.

    Armed rebels then attacked the checkpoint. One video clip posted on the internet showed a burnt-out government armoured personnel carrier.

    That afternoon the army began shelling the town with tanks and mortars. About 7pm armed Shabiha, the pro-government militia, some of them possibly coming from the Alawite villages that surround Houla, swept in and the massacre began.

    They went from house to house, looting, ransacking and killing until after midnight.

    One elderly woman told Human Rights Watch: “I was in the house with my three grandsons, three granddaughters, sister-in-law, daughter, daughter-in-law and cousin . . . I was in a room by myself when I heard the sound of a man. He was shouting and yelling at my family.

    “I hid behind the door . . . After three minutes I heard all my family members screaming and yelling. The children, aged between 10 and 14, were crying . . . As I approached the door I heard several gunshots.

    “I was so terrified I couldn’t stand on my legs. I heard the soldiers leaving. I looked outside the room and saw all of my family members shot. They were shot in their bodies and their head.”

    Abu Firas Abdulrazak said that he fled his home to escape arrest when the shelling began. When he returned hours later he found his wife and six children, aged between five months and 16, dead.

    They “were lying on the floor, covered in blood. My five-month-old daughter had been shot in the head, and my ten-year-old physically disabled son was stabbed in the head with a machete. This is the last thing I remember seeing before I passed out.”

    Maysara Hilaoui, a local activist, said that Shabiha militia “broke into houses and farms and killed everyone they saw”. He added: “It’s painful to describe what I saw. Some bodies had their eyes ripped from them, and others had their heads cut off. There were also bodies covered with knife wounds. We have reports that five women were raped before they were killed.”

    These accounts cannot be independently confirmed, but video footage taken after the massacre lends them credence. It shows UN monitors walking down the abandoned streets of Houla with occasional gunshots audible in the background. Most shops and houses appear to have been torched. Walls are pockmarked by bullets. Pools of dried blood stain the pavements. “Everyone who refused to evacuate was killed,” a monitor remarks.

    One clip shows a family bedroom strewn with blankets and clothes. There is blood on the walls, a pool of blood on the double bed, blood on the cushions and mats on the floor.

    The regime blamed the massacre on “armed terrorist gangs” who were determined to wreck the chances of peace and provoke military intervention by the international community.

    http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/public/article3430302.ece
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    Where do I start with this stupidity :facepalm2:
    (Original post by Perseveranze)
    First point I can happily agree with (it doesn't really matter, since Saudi and other nations already supply the FSA), second I cannot. You have too many misconceptions about FSA.
    No, you have too many misconceptions of the FSA. Did you know the FSA has been meeting and supported by the Israelis? And other Zionists such as Mcain, Lieberman (the latter who has an illegal settlement home in the West Bank)? Dont even bother claiming that you're pro-Palestinian, if you're willing to do business with the Israelis. You're either with the Palestinians, or against us.

    The Gulf regimes support the FSA, as well as Israel, so no surprises there :rolleyes:
    1. Al Qaeda does not make up FSA (just because a few propoganda statements from BBC suggest it, does not make it true, because it's not). Even if a couple of AQ affiliates were fighting in the army, this in no way suggests they represent the FSA's ideals - that army is strictly joined to fighting and taking down a tyrant, it has every right to and should not be mis-interpreted because of a few "flag" pictures.
    Al Qaeda has infiltrated Syria along with other slimy Islamists to attack the secular government and its people. This is not new, it has been reported by your beloved Qatari Al Jazeera. The BBC has never suggested that, in fact, the opposite. You cant speak on behalf of this "army" (well, its not really an army without a tank brigade) on what its aims are. The FSA also flies the French mandate of Syria flag (tri-star) - a suggestion that they want to go back to that period when Syria was french owned.
    2. Most of the FSA are Syrian army defects. Who only defected because they found the Assad regime brutal/oppressive - they would not be joining the FSA if it was equally so.
    True, but not many have defected. You make it sound like a whole brigade has defected but it hasnt, neither have the governments key figures.
    3. Christians are not randomly killed/targeted like you're putting it. Yes, those who do go around supporting Assad and putting obstacles in the way of FSA, are indeed taken down. But it has ZERO to do with them being Christians, as anyone who does the above is seen as an enemy by FSA.

    Cannot blame the FSA for some Christians stupidity in supporting a tyrant.
    Firstly, yes they are killing christians intentionally. If these FSA guys want to bring democracy, surely you have the right to support whoever you want, right? The answer is yes. Again, stop talking on behalf of these terrorists.
    4. It is difficult to see how the FSA is going to get crushed.

    - Mujahideen (many with the right intentions) are travelling all across the world to do Jihad in Syria. Just recently reports came of 600 Libyans crossing the border to join FSA. The situation is becomming similar to that of the Bosnian war.
    Government forces control most towns and villages and are protecting them from these FSA sectarian terrorists. The FS "army" is almost dead.
    - Many Syrian Army defects are joining the FSA and their legitimate cause. Thus with the above, the FSA is only increasing.
    No it is not. Like I said before, a brigade has not defected and the amount of defectors from the Syrian Army make up less than half a percent (not even that).
    - Saudi, Bahrain and many other nations are supplying the FSA with arms, so it's not like they'll get a shortage any time soon.
    These arms are only Kalashnikovs, which hardly do damage to tanks. Any money they receive from the Zionist-controlled petro-monarchies is used to buy heavier arms such as the RPG-7 but they are either intercepted by Lebanese forces (the navy mostly) or seized by Syrian forces.
    - Whilst Assad's army is suffering from defects, there's a lot of international pressure on Russia/China (the two out of the three main power house supporters) from giving any assistance to Assad, and it is likely they will accept this.
    No they wont, Iran already arms President Assad and the PKK (Kurdish resistance fighters) are on the side of the Syrians.
    - Support for FSA is growing from the wider communities, as the Houla atrocities serve to further legitimize their causes.
    Houla killings was perpetrated by FSA terrorists. I saw a video in which a rebel walked away after firing a RPG rocket at civilians, with an empty round. It was the FSA. I know it, the Syrians know it and the world knows it. They are pinning this on Assad because they want to invade. Funny how you support Libya eh?
    So the way I see it, Assad is likely to be pushed into a corner and eventually toppled. The chances of a FSA victory are increasing every day.
    FSA chances are decreasing, as I have explained throughout. Assad will remain in power and so he should.

    What a bunch of nonsense that article is. First, the media claimed that tanks had shelled these civilians when clearly they had bullet wounds and slash wounds. Now the media is changing the story to this "shahiba" killing civilians.

    These sectarian Zionist dogs supported by the Zionist West and Gulfies are not going to get its hands on Syria.
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    (Original post by ak137)
    Where do I start with this stupidity :facepalm2:

    No, you have too many misconceptions of the FSA. Did you know the FSA has been meeting and supported by the Israelis? And other Zionists such as Mcain, Lieberman (the latter who has an illegal settlement home in the West Bank)? Dont even bother claiming that you're pro-Palestinian, if you're willing to do business with the Israelis. You're either with the Palestinians, or against us.

    The Gulf regimes support the FSA, as well as Israel, so no surprises there :rolleyes:

    Al Qaeda has infiltrated Syria along with other slimy Islamists to attack the secular government and its people. This is not new, it has been reported by your beloved Qatari Al Jazeera. The BBC has never suggested that, in fact, the opposite. You cant speak on behalf of this "army" (well, its not really an army without a tank brigade) on what its aims are. The FSA also flies the French mandate of Syria flag (tri-star) - a suggestion that they want to go back to that period when Syria was french owned.

    True, but not many have defected. You make it sound like a whole brigade has defected but it hasnt, neither have the governments key figures.

    Firstly, yes they are killing christians intentionally. If these FSA guys want to bring democracy, surely you have the right to support whoever you want, right? The answer is yes. Again, stop talking on behalf of these terrorists.

    Government forces control most towns and villages and are protecting them from these FSA sectarian terrorists. The FS "army" is almost dead.

    No it is not. Like I said before, a brigade has not defected and the amount of defectors from the Syrian Army make up less than half a percent (not even that).

    These arms are only Kalashnikovs, which hardly do damage to tanks. Any money they receive from the Zionist-controlled petro-monarchies is used to buy heavier arms such as the RPG-7 but they are either intercepted by Lebanese forces (the navy mostly) or seized by Syrian forces.

    No they wont, Iran already arms President Assad and the PKK (Kurdish resistance fighters) are on the side of the Syrians.

    Houla killings was perpetrated by FSA terrorists. I saw a video in which a rebel walked away after firing a RPG rocket at civilians, with an empty round. It was the FSA. I know it, the Syrians know it and the world knows it. They are pinning this on Assad because they want to invade. Funny how you support Libya eh?

    FSA chances are decreasing, as I have explained throughout. Assad will remain in power and so he should.

    What a bunch of nonsense that article is. First, the media claimed that tanks had shelled these civilians when clearly they had bullet wounds and slash wounds. Now the media is changing the story to this "shahiba" killing civilians.

    These sectarian Zionist dogs supported by the Zionist West and Gulfies are not going to get its hands on Syria.
    For the sake of pointlessly arguing with another Muslim, I won't reply to this and leave it at that.

    You accuse FSA of;

    a) Being Zionist supporters and supported by them
    b) Conspiring against Assad by being responsible for the Houla massacred.
    c) Being Terrorists, who target civilians.

    And any videos/links I gave you (of showing pure counter evidence to the above), you'll accuse me of being biased/showing propaganda.

    It's like Assad himself hacked and logged on to your account.

    So, i'll just leave it at this, for the sake of avoiding arguements, especially when you seem firm on your beliefs.
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    (Original post by Perseveranze)
    There's a difference between supplying arms and invading the nation. And no, the free-Syrian Army are not terrorists, where are you getting this info from?

    And it's not about sectarianism (just because Alawite/Christians/Shia's are helping Assad does not mean they're randomly being targetted), it's about taking down Assad, which is going to happen one way or another. Giving up resistance/arms is not happening though.

    There are videos of some alawite's even joining the free Syrian army (though it's suitable I don't post them here).


    (Original post by ak137)
    What the ****? You complain about western forces in Iraq and Afghanistan but yet, you openly support them supplying the Free Syrian Army Al Qaeda terrorists with weapons and I presume you supported the Libyan invasion.

    We dont want sectarianism in Syria and the FSA are sectarian forces. Pull your finger out and stop working with these western forces.


    Truth hurts doesnt it.

    Surely you are not so naive to fail note the pattern of various muslim users on TSR such as Persy whinging about West attacks on sunni muslim leaders, but egging them on to attack Shia dictators such as Assad. You would also note the various posts about Attrocities in syria but little referance to killings by the sunni saudi backed Bahrain governement , or even the tens of thousands of muslims sunni saddam killed too. i suppose it reflects the sunni majortiy on tsr membership?

    perhaps you can glean from this Persy and co have little concern for muslims, just simply a political agenda that benefits sunni islam?
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    (Original post by Indo-Chinese Food)
    Surely you are not so naive to fail note the pattern of various muslim users on TSR such as Persy whinging about West attacks on sunni muslim leaders, but egging them on to attack Shia dictators such as Assad. You would also note the various posts about Attrocities in syria but little referance to killings by the sunni saudi backed Bahrain governement , or even the tens of thousands of muslims sunni saddam killed too. i suppose it reflects the sunni majortiy on tsr membership?

    perhaps you can glean from this Persy and co have little concern for muslims, just simply a political agenda that benefits sunni islam?
    Great point, you should write to the Hindu/Indian medias (whilst your at it, tell them to publicize the act of infanticide more, it's a growing problem I hear), western media and so on who are "exaggerating" the Assad regime crimes. And nah, it reflects the views of most of humanity, very few people believe Assad should remain in power.

    Quite surprised after your ban you're starting your rubbish up again.
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    I have to say, I do think Walt is on to something in his foreign policy blog where he suggests the West's best option to do some how appeal to Russia's own interests to get them to leverage Assad out of the way before this sort of mess becomes inevitable.
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    (Original post by Perseveranze)
    Great point, you should write to the Hindu/Indian medias (whilst your at it, tell them to publicize the act of infanticide more, it's a growing problem I hear), western media and so on who are "exaggerating" the Assad regime crimes.


    i wouldnt say great point, it is a blatently obvious one.

    We invaded iraq becuase it had a mass murdering sunni nutcase as a head. Assad hasnt killed a fraction of the people saddam did, and yet i have never heard you thank the west for taking him down, strange :hmmmm:
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    (Original post by Indo-Chinese Food)
    i wouldnt say great point, it is a blatently obvious one.

    We invaded iraq becuase it had a mass murdering sunni nutcase as a head. Assad hasnt killed a fraction of the people saddam did, and yet i have never heard you thank the west for taking him down, strange :hmmmm:
    Your "invasion" caused the deaths of millions that are still effected by it today. You didn't "invade" for mass murdering, you invaded because you "thought" Saddam had WMD's. Even today your randomly invading other countries and dropping drone bombs on civilians.
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    (Original post by Perseveranze)
    Your "invasion" caused the deaths of millions that are still effected by it today. You didn't "invade" for mass murdering, you invaded because you "thought" Saddam had WMD's. Even today your randomly invading other countries and dropping drone bombs on civilians.
    well firstly its not 'you' its 'we' yes, given we both live in this country

    and why 'we' invaded is not the point i made, - you still havent shown any gratidude for various countries stopping saddams murder of what, a few hundred thousand muslims. Did this not matter to you becuase the majority probably werent sunni?
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    Where is the evidence Assad forces committed this massacre? Reporters aren't allowed in the country, so then all we have is the word of the FSA against the word of the government. Why would Assad want his forces to execute children thus provoking an invasion? Why would enlisted forces of any country execute their own children even if it was directly ordered? Aren't extreme Islamists, the sort who compose the FSA, more likely to employ methods such as beheading? And how do we know that it wasn't a third party such as Al Qaeda or a band of pro-regime civilians?

    So why do people mindlessly believe it all unquestioningly? Could it be because we're being misguided by propaganda such as photos from Iraq all day on BBC news? Could that have something to do with the fact that it is extremely beneficial for Israel, the West and the Gulf states that Assad falls and a leader that sides with us over Iran / Russia / China replaces him?

    You have to be extremely ignorant to not be asking any of these questions. As far as our leaders are concerned this situation is not a humanitarian crisis, it's part of a broader geopolitical strategy for all countries involved and they're selling it to us with these skewed reports and blatant propaganda. The real victims of it all are the Syrians who were happy living under Assad, the Christians who now fear persecution and the peaceful protestors that genuinely opposed Assad whose movement was completely hijacked.

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