Stateside, Stockholm Syndrome Graham was on FOXNews Sunday morning to explain and defend the Trump administration’s policy.
Significant in his remarks, the issue of “the oil” in Syria has finally been raised, and he presents it like Trump split the atom.
I don’t know if his remarks are funny or cringeworthy:
Graham, who last week called President Trump’s decision to withdraw U.S. troops from Northern Syria “the most screwed up decision I’ve ever seen,” said that after speaking with the president yesterday he is “increasingly optimistic this could turn out very well.”
“The big thing for me is the oil fields,” Graham said. “President Trump is thinking outside the box. I was so impressed with his thinking about the oil. Not only are we going to deny the oil fields falling into Iranian hands. I believe we’re on the verge of a joint venture between us and the Syrian Democratic Forces, who helped destroy ISIS and keep them destroyed, to modernize the oil fields and make sure they get the revenue, not the Iranians, not Assad.”
Here’s an RCP article on it with the video:
He also explains the proposal to have an internationally administered safe zone between Turkey and the Kurds to keep Turkey safe (no American troops on the ground, but with US air support), with no mention of the displacement of people that would cause, including all of Qamishli and perhaps control of much of the critical M4 highway.
Also, even though the stated point is to get US troops out of conflicts, Saudi Arabia is different because fuck Iran and we need to protect our interests, like the price of oil.
Yes, he actually both unapologetically and unself-consciously explained pretty much all our foreign policy in the region in terms of oil (with a side dish of Israel, which he sort of shoehorns in there). Even to the extent that the point is valid, his explanation does a gross disservice to the troops who have been involved in all this and what they were fighting for on the ground in a blood, sweat, and tears kind of way, though he does manage to say nice things about them too.
Again, funny or fucked? I report, you decide. We’ll see what happens on Tuesday when Erdogan meets with Putin, but I expect literally nobody to support the plan Lindsey outlines.
As for Pelosi, she bounced out of Jordan issuing a statement before the visit but not after, and then hit up Afghanistan, for which she released a statement after but not before. Dunno if there’s any significance to her not saying anything about what went down in Jordan; really wonder what they talked about, since there is no indication that Jordan wants any part of Syria. Of course, all of these developments have the potential to affect Lebanon (which is currently on fire) greatly in both the short and long term, so maybe it’s something like that.
I almost find it reassuring that we sold out our allies for something as craven as oil rather than because of incompetence or personal gain.
I can see that. Like, it’s not just not out of the box; it’s an old familiar box. With that comforting musty smell.
You can live in a box like that.
Edit: If you want a dose of incompetence, @Marciano490 , you can consider the security risk that some have expressed.
Specifically, the SDF has been working closely with US Special Forces for three years now. They’ve had an intimate look at US force capabilities, techniques, extent of intel, etc.
And we just forced them into a military alliance where they potentially may be working and fighting side by side with Syrians, Russians, and the odd Iranian here and there, all because we abandoned them.