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Congratulations on 6 October!

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  • thekoba@aztecfreenet.org
    ================= Begin forwarded message ================= Dear Eric and Kevin, The strike was indeed coordinated with Washington, and American responses on
    Message 1 of 2 , Oct 6, 2003
      ================= Begin forwarded message =================

      Dear Eric and Kevin,

      The strike was indeed coordinated with Washington, and American responses on
      Syrian support for 'terrorist' groups highlights this. However, don't be
      alarmed at the lack of Syrian response. For one thing, the Syrian military
      is severely outdated, relying heavily on Soviet pre-Prestroyka hardware. So
      it would have been futile to launch a counter-raid or anything of that sort.
      For another thing, the Syrians are masters at playing brinksmanship. THE
      bear the name of a Palestinian group, so "Israel" will have to look like the
      aggressor again when it attacks deep inside Syria. Finally, most Arab
      armies are useless really, mired in corruption and internal politics and
      power struggles. During the siege of Lebanon in 1982, a combined force of
      Lebanese and Palestinian resistance fighters managed to keep Beirut
      International Airport against several Zionist attacks, when Syrian units
      besieged in Beirut took over the airport, they lost it in about three hours.
      The Syrian army lost about five thousand troops during the siege just
      trying to WITHDRAW from its positions inside areas in Lebanon being attacked
      by the Zionists. Regular PLO troops collapsed in a more humiliating way.
      On the other hand, a few thousand Palestinian, SYRIAN, and Lebanese
      irregulars managed to keep West Beirut for over months until Yasser Arafat
      struck a compromise to withdraw under American sponsorship, that is, the
      defeat was political, not military in essence. It's true that when Zionist
      troops approached the Syrian borders at a point between 40 and 60 miles from
      Damascus that the Syrians special units put up a fierce fight that stopped
      the Zionist encroachment in its tracks on that particular front only.
      However, if the Syrians are going to draw any lessons whatsoever from the
      aggression on Iraq, they must assign a great deal of trust and
      responsibility to the people (arming them and what have you). But that is
      something I don't see the gov't doing in the near future actually. So the
      alternative for the Syrian gov't is to rely on very flexible political
      maneuvaring and to play their cards well in Palestine, Lebanon, and Iraq
      through the resistance there (it's common knowledge now over here that at
      least some of the Iraqi resistance is supported by Syria).

      On the War of 1973, defeat was indeed snatched from the jaws of victory.
      After the initial advances, the cease-fire lines on the Syrian front were
      closer to Damascus than before the war started. And had it not been for the
      intervention of the Iraqi army at the time, Zionist troops would have ended
      up making deep incursions into Syrian territory. On the Egyptian front,
      Sadat's betrayals left a whole army under siege when he started negotiating
      from a weaker position. He could have gone on to improve the odds as his
      military commandars told him, but that is not something Sadat was likely to
      do. It's not his style!

      Having said all that, Eric's point about the how the 1973 showed there was
      great potential for victory remains very valid. That war also showed,
      nevertheless, that a prerequisite for that victory has to be a determined
      leadership willing to take the fight to the end. But that was not the case,
      especially on Egyptian front. We needed a Stalin for that war, but only got
      a Trojan horse.

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