Read and weep for the foolishness of our leaders who, by their war on the jihadis, are doing everything they can to recruit thousands more for the rampaging killer army. What the USA is doing is not fighting against an enemy. No .... far from it. What the USA is doing is exactly what Osama bin Laden said has to be done .... hit its economy to diminish its riches which in turn will diminish its power. Wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Libya, Yemen and support for the Ukraine regime, support for anti-Venezuela regime,
support for anti-Assad jihadis, support for Columbia govt to hit rebels against it, support for Somalia govt, .... and these are just the few jars of poison we know the USA has her paws into, and all these have hit USA's economy, reduced its riches and diminished its power. You know it, I know it and everybody knows it.
Edward Dark (a pseudonym) is a columnist for Al-Monitor's Syria Pulse living in Aleppo, writes:
US strikes in Syria won’t turn locals against Islamic State
AL-BAB, Syria — Hell is inescapable. With the terror of living under regime or rebel bombing, Islamic State (IS) barbarism and the nightmarish destitution of refugee camps and death boats adrift at sea, hell is the price of being Syrian today. “This is the Syrian’s lot,” Abu Riad told Al-Monitor, “we are destined never to find peace except in our graves.”
Abu Riad is a relative I recently visited near the town of Al-Bab east of Aleppo in the heart of IS territory. He echoed the fear of many others now that the United States has put together a coalition to wage war on the terror group, a war that will likely involve airstrikes against targets in Syria and inevitably cause more carnage and loss of innocent life.
In Abu Riad’s words, “We have been living in absolute terror for a week now under regime airstrikes. Now we have the Americans coming to bomb us too. Where do we go? Why is everyone killing us; what have we done to deserve this?” Indeed, Al-Bab has suffered heavy barrel bombing in the past few days, resulting in many casualties, which prompted me to avoid going to the town altogether and remain in the relative safety of rural areas. Caught between the hammer of regime bombings and the anvil of imminent US airstrikes, many people have started doing the same, fleeing the towns for safer areas. Even IS, as reported by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, has begun to evacuate its headquarters to avoid putting people’s lives at risk, or at least that is what the group claims.
Regardless, it would be foolish to believe that US military action against IS is popular here or will go down well, especially when civilian casualties start to mount. On the contrary, it will most likely prove counterproductive, stoking anti-Western resentment among the population and increasing support for IS, driving even more recruits to its ranks.
The terror group knows this well, which is why it is secretly overjoyed at the prospect of military action against it. In its calculations, the loss of fighters to strikes is more than outweighed by the outpouring of support it expects both locally and on the international jihadist scene. And its fighters are not afraid of martyrdom by US bombs. In fact, the chance for martyrdom is why many of them came to fight in Syria in the first place.
The US strategy of arming moderate rebel groups to fight extremists on the ground in Syria seems to be an abject failure, yet it is resurrected time and time again. The most recent bombshell was dropped by Jamal Maarouf, the warlord head of the Syrian Revolutionary Front, who has signed a non-aggression pact with IS, prompting serious questions about the reliability and viability of such rebel partners.
In reality, the war against IS will be won and lost on the ground through hearts and minds, not through missiles and bombs. This is something I felt acutely while talking to the people of Al-Bab, who almost unanimously sang the praises of IS' administration and the services the group brought to the areas under its control after years of turmoil.
“My business had never been this good under the local rebels, some of whom were my relatives,” said Abu Riad. “They brought law and order; they went after the criminals and bandits and cleaned up the town. Under the rebels, it was chaos and lawlessness. Now I can be sure my merchandise is safe and I can transport it safely as no one dares steal here anymore,” he added. Even more extraordinary is that some of Aleppo’s industrialists and factory owners opted to move their machinery from the Sheikh Najjar industrial zone into IS territory in Al-Bab, as they knew it would be safe from looting there...........