Clinton-Trump 2nd Debate - Syria

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    Oct 10, 2016 2:17 AM GMT
    Syria, Iran on the ground, Russia in the air.
    Destroy Aleppo where the rebels against al-Assad are.
    I will stand up to Russia with a no-fly zone.

    Obama drew a line in the sand in Syria and became a laughing stock.
    Clinton talks tough against al-Assad and Putin; but, she doesn't know who the rebels are.
    I don't like al-Assad but Assad, Russia, and Iran are killing ISIS.

    ISIS is priority 1, Syria is priority 2.

    Clinton - I will not use ground troops in Syria.
    I think we can take Mosul.
    I would go after al-Baghdadi, Sunni militant jihadist organisation known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, which controls territory in western Iraq, Syria, Libya and Afghanistan.
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    Oct 10, 2016 4:03 PM GMT
    The only real foreign policy question was about the humanitarian crisis in Syria, focusing on whether the United States is doing enough to stop it. The frame is extremely typical for an American foreign policy discussion — not a question of whether to use military force, but a question of how much military force is appropriate, with a strong presumption that more is better.

    Equally telling was what wasn't mentioned: the ongoing U.S.-backed Saudi war on Yemen. For a year and a half now, Saudi Arabia has been ripping Yemen to shreds with a blockade and military intervention using U.S. weapons, causing probably the worst humanitarian crisis in the world. On Saturday, a Saudi airstrike struck a large funeral procession in the capital Sana'a, killing more than 100 people and igniting furious protests throughout the country. The U.S. quickly announced that it would review its support policy, which might end the war at a stroke.

    Given that this happened literally the previous day, it's simply malpractice not to get the candidates on the record about it.
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    Oct 10, 2016 4:09 PM GMT
    [Trump] rightly criticized the U.S. tendency for arming rebel groups to go awry. This indeed has been a major problem for President Obama, and for many others before him.

    But this was drastically undercut by Trump's subsequent argument that because Syria's Bashar al-Assad and Russia are (together with Iran) fighting ISIS, the U.S. should effectively align with that faction to defeat the common enemy. Now, while peaceful relations must be pursued with any nation that has thousands of nuclear weapons, and Assad will probably have to be part of any negotiated ceasefire, that is a frankly preposterous suggestion. Aligning with a brutal, highly unstable dictatorship is going to create as many problems as it solves. Better by far to avoid direct involvement, and defeat ISIS with a containment strategy.

    Clinton, for her part, erred in the other direction, displaying her usual hawkishness by suggesting a no-fly zone is needed in Syria, and arguing America should start arming Kurdish forces. The Kurds have been very reliable proxies, but they need help with engaging Turkey diplomatically more than they need weapons, and a no-fly zone inflicting further Russian escalation.

    The above post of quotes come from The Week.
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    Oct 11, 2016 1:56 AM GMT
    The warning Dmitry Kiselyov delivered to Washington in last night's edition of his show News of the Week was, even for him, particularly dramatic.

    "Impudent behaviour" towards Russia may have "nuclear" consequences, he said.

    "A Russian takes a long time to harness a horse, but then rides fast," said the news anchor, quoting a famous Russian saying.

    By "riding fast", Kiselyov was referring to a string of recent Russian military deployments:

    Last week, Moscow sent three warships from the Black Sea Fleet to the Mediterranean: on board, cruise missiles that can carry nuclear warheads
    Russia deployed nuclear-capable Iskander-M missiles into the Kaliningrad region bordering Poland
    The Russians announced they would send 5,000 paratroopers to Egypt for military exercises
    Moscow also suspended three nuclear agreements with the United States

    Moscow was taking action, he said, because of "the loud talk in Washington of a 'Plan B' for Syria. Everyone understands what this plan means: direct military force in Syria against President Assad's forces and the Russian military".

    In News of the Week, a Russian defense ministry spokesman warned American bombers not to target the Syrian army. Kiselyov put it more bluntly: "We'll shoot them down," he explained.

    "There is a reason that Russia has deployed S-300 surface-to-air missile systems to Syria," Izvestia commented last week.

    "Moscow is ready to use them. This won't spark a world war. After all, we've shot down American planes before, in Vietnam and Korea [in Soviet times]. Vladimir Putin is making it clear that Russia will make no more concessions [in Syria]."

    And Fyodor Lukyanov, Editor-in-Chief of Russia in Global Affairs warned that "this is the most dangerous situation since the Cold War."

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    Oct 15, 2016 4:27 AM GMT
    Syria - Iran - Russia against ISIS
    United States against Syria
    Qatar gives Bill Clinton $1 million dollar birthday gift
    Saudi Arabia and Qatar or factions in these countries sell arms to ISIS
    = = =
    [url][/url]Qatar – United States relations are bilateral relations between the State of Qatar and the United States. Qatar and the United States are strategic allies

    ...Beginning in 1992, Qatar has built intimate military ties with the United States, and is now the location of U.S. Central Command’s Forward Headquarters and the Combined Air Operations Center.

    As of 2015, the following American bases currently exist:
    Al Udeid Air Base
    As Sayliyah Army Base
    = = =
    This is a reason for the US not joining Syria, Russia, and Iran against ISIS.
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    Oct 15, 2016 10:26 PM GMT
    Some experts have pointed out that many of the key players have one thing in common: a billion-dollar gas pipeline.

    Factor in this detail and suddenly the war begins to make more sense, here’s how it works:


    Many have questioned why Russia became involved in the Syrian war but often overlook the fight over natural gas.

    As Harvard Professor Mitchell A Orenstein and George Romer wrote last month inForeign Affairs, Russia currently supplies Europe with a quarter of the gas it uses for heating, cooking, fuel and other activities.

    In fact 80 per cent of the gas that Russian state-controlled company Gazprom produces is sold to Europe, so maintaining this crucial market is very important.

    But Europe doesn’t like being so reliant on Russia for fuel and has been trying to reduce its dependence. It’s a move that is supported by the United States as it would weaken Russian influence over Europe.

    This has not gone down well with Russia, which uses its power over gas as political leverage and has a history of cutting off supply to countries during conflicts. It has even gone to war in Georgia and Ukraine to disrupt plans to export gas from other parts of the Middle East.

    As David Dalton, the editor of the Economist Intelligence Unit, told The New York Times: “Russia has always used gas as an instrument of influence. The more you owe Gazprom, the more they think they can turn the screws.”