Battle plan doomed - Comment - Israel News | Haaretz Daily Newspaper
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    • Rudy Haugeneder
    • 28.08.13 | 03:57 (IDT)

    This war is a very, very stupid undertaking. Just read the following: BLOOMBERG -- Even Mustapha al-Sheikh, among the first senior officers to defect from the Syrian army, says the rebels he joined are too divided to gain much from a possible Western military attack against President Bashar al-Assad. “The strength of the regime comes from the weakness of the opposition,” al-Sheikh, who was a brigadier-general in Assad’s army, said in a phone interview yesterday from an undisclosed location in Syria. Because of those divisions, as the U.S. and its allies consider military action against Assad, they are struggling to identify potential successors to the Syrian leader should his regime collapse. More than two years into the conflict, hundreds of militias fighting Assad aren’t unified under a national command and don’t report to opposition politicians in exile, who have been cultivated by the West. Some of them are radical Islamist groups allied with al-Qaeda. That has constrained U.S. efforts to provide support for the rebels. It’s also likely to limit the scope of any U.S.-led strikes to punish Assad for his alleged use of chemical weapons, according to al-Sheikh and defense analysts in Europe and the Middle East. “We don’t have an opposition that I think we should be putting in power,” said Col. Richard Kemp, a former commander of British forces in Afghanistan, and a senior associate fellow at the Royal United Services Institute for Defense and Security Studies, speaking by phone from London. “The opposition is dominated by al-Qaeda and other extremists, so it’s going to be bad, possibly worse than Assad himself.”

    from the article: What are Obama's options in Syria?
    First published 02:34 28.08.13 | Last updated 01:36 28.08.13
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