The former head of the CIA’s bin Laden unit, Michael Scheuer, tells readers of his blog, non-intervention.com, that despite America’s reckless actions in the Middle East, which have bled the U.S. of men and treasure, Russia is in even worse shape. With the rise of ISIS cells in Northern Afghanistan, threatening Russia’s soft central-Asian underbelly, the Kremlin has a new threat on its hands. Scheuer says if President Trump will avoid further rash action in the Middle East, the suffering there will be Russia’s, not America’s. He writes (abridged):
The U.S.-led attack on Syria was reckless, unnecessary, and self-defeating, but most of all it is clear testimony to the fact that the republic and its Constitution are nearly dead. Simply put, President Trump acted in the same matter as his four immediate predecessors.
After eight years of war in Syria, not one genuine U.S. national interest – economic, military, or any other – has been damaged even slightly. The only American lives or limbs lost there were aid workers and journalists who knowingly put themselves in harm’s way, and several U.S. troops who were sent to Syria unconstitutionally and died there uselessly and wastefully.
Indeed, genuine U.S. national interests have benefited from the Syrian war. Russian President Putin threw his geopolitical dice and lost. As a result, he has been steadily spending his military’s lives, equipment, and monetary resources on a secondary Islamist threat to Russia, while the priority Islamist threat to Russia and its Commonwealth of Independent States is emanating from Afghanistan.
Islamist forces in Afghanistan, especially those of the Islamic State (IS), have substantially increased in number, and they are gradually solidifying their presence in the northern Afghan provinces that border Central Asia. Putin’s military will soon be mired and bleeding in both Syria and Afghanistan, thereby further reducing Russia’s ability and desire to antagonize the United States.
It is up to you, now, Mr. Trump. Did you come to praise and save the republic, or to finish it off and bury it? For now, at least, the sound of shovels digging a grave seems to be coming from the White House.
Read more here.