"It's evident, for instance, that the 800 pound guerrilla hovering behind the debate is Israel and its American backers, one of the most powerful lobbies in Washington....What has not been made clear is that, lurking in the background, is another shadowy hulking presence: Israel's nuclear weapons capacity, which -- as I've previously blogged -- Israel has never officially acknowledged and most U.S. administrations have done their best to ignore."First of all, it's spelled "gorilla," unless Lando is taking about the world's fattest unconventional soldier. Nice to know the level of intelligence required to write for the Huffington Post.
Secondly, right from the start Lando makes it clear that
Lando actually makes an interesting, if ultimately not relevant, point, that Syria collected its chemical weapons in the first place to potentially use against Israel, not its own people.
"It was not with the intention of deploying CW against their own people. It was instead an attempt to develop an affordable and meaningful deterrent to Israel's daunting military might, particularly to Israel's nuclear capabilities."If you're wondering why that matters to the current situation, which is Assad gassing his own people after President Obama specifically telling him not to, you'd have to ask Barry Lando. Because he doesn't actually want to talk about children being gassed to death (too depressing!) not when he can just launch himself into a frenzy of Israel blaming and Arab victimization.
"While Israeli leaders have always portrayed their country as an embattled David, confronting an existential threat from an Arab -- and now,Iranian -- Goliath, Syria's perspective has been totally different....The Syrians, on the other hand, have suffered one humiliating setback after another, from the failure to defeat Israel in 1948, to Israel's on-going occupation of the Golan Heights, which they took in 1967, to Israel's repeated forays into South Lebanon."Boo hoo hoo hoo. Let's all cry oceans of tears for the poor "humiliated" Syrians. I'm sure if they had just succeeded in a couple of those wars of genocide against Israel, Lando would be so much happier and we wouldn't be in this mess. Also I don't know why Israel's relationship with Lebanon would have anything to do with Syria, I guess Lando just admitted that Syria has a messed up attitude toward Lebanon (hint: they think it's theirs). The blaming of Israel for pretty much everything continues:
"Syria has not signed the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention. Whenever the issue comes up, Syria's leaders have invariably cited Israel's nuclear weapons program, and the fact that Israel refused to sign the 1968 Non-Proliferation Treaty....In other words, Syria is not going to unilaterally lay down its most potent weapon. Think what you will of the men governing Syria, but how can Israel or its American backers answer their argument? Particularly if they still refuse to admit that Israel even has nukes?"In this paragraph Lando takes another step down the road of obviously not caring about the welfare of the Syrian people, although I guess that has become obvious at this point. I'll tell you how you can answer that, by the way: Chemical weapons are not nuclear weapons! The precedent of nations not signing the NPT and getting nuclear weapons has been established not only by Israel but India and Pakistan too.
Besides, the problem is not that Syria has chemical weapons, it's that it is using them. If Israel started firing nuclear weapons against its own people, you'd better believe that other countries would stand up and take notice. Syria hasn't suffered the exact same consequences for having chemical weapons that Israel has for having nuclear weapons: nothing. No one seemed to care about Syrian chemical weapons until Assad (or whoever) started using them. You'd think a smart guy like Lando would be able to tell the difference, but apparently not if doing so means not blaming Israel for everything under the sun.
Here's his "amazing" conclusion:
"With the existence of the Assad regime now at stake, the Syrian military's doctrines against whom they might use CW may have changed. But not the trip wire that might provoke their use: a serious threat to the Syrian capital...What is striking about the study I've just cited is the fact that, according to some sources, the reason that Syrian military units may have resorted to CW on August 21, was as a desperate measure to drive rebel forces from a key suburb of Damascus."Yep, that's it. That's the end. We see an excellent example of two-stepping logic here: If Assad used chemical weapons (and we're not saying that he did), then it's only because rebels were getting close to Damascus. But he only had them in the first place because of Israel. Either way Assad isn't to blame for his own actions. If he were, America might have to do something about it and that's not something Lando wants to endorse. So the facts get discarded in favor of rhetoric. Perfect Huffington Post blogger material.