U.S. Shoots Down Syrian Jet; Russia Issues Threat
Good morning, folks. I know it’s a Monday — and a summer Monday at that — so I’d love to start you off with some dog gifs or maybe some scantily clad coeds you could take with you on your bathroom break, but there’s a lot of tense shit happening so we’re gonna hop right in. Sorry about that.
One of our fighter jets shot down a Syrian fighter jet over the weekend. It was the first time we’ve shot down another country’s aircraft since 1999. Our people are saying the Syrian jet was bombing our buddies’ positions as they fought ISIS; Syria and Russia are saying the jet was simply bombing ISIS, and they’re pissed about it.
In retaliation, Russia has issued a threat.
Quick geographic refresher for you guys.
So what does this all mean, Basil? It means we are and continue to be in some weird ass cold war with the Syrian regime and kinda the Russians in the Middle East. I’ve explained this before but I’ll run through it again. Syria has been the scene of a gruesome, complicated civil war since 2011. That civil war has spawned all sorts of chaos and facilitated the growth and successfulness of ISIS in the country. The Assad regime is the official state military, but it conflicts with ISIS and literally hundreds of other rebel groups. Some of those groups are decent, some are bad, some are really bad.
Russia sides with Assad. That’s tough for us, for Assad has used chemical weapons on civilians and shown a general lack of care or compassion for human life. He is, according to us and to most of our allies, actually bad.
Where does this leave us? It leaves us in an incredibly sensitive and tricky spot, and Putin and Assad know it. You see, if we go full bore against the Syrian regime, Russia simply paints us as the aggressive imperialists going after the Middle East and after Islam. Russia and our enemies in the Middle East use any collateral damage from an aggressive move to sway Middle Eastern opinion HEAVILY against the United States (see: Iraq war). They’re actually already doing this with the airstrikes we’ve been conducting.
But if we do nothing, we’re non-humanitarian, we’re ignorant, and we’re downright careless, as enabling whatever forms from this Syrian disaster could be DISASTROUS for this region and for the entire geopolitical scene going forward (see: ISIS).
So what are we doing? We are doing this weird ass cold war type thing that I mentioned above. We have rallied a coalition that conducts air strikes and arms certain rebels. We provide supplies and intelligence here and there. We’re essentially trying to make sure nothing gets too irreversibly out of hand without actually going to war, without actually declaring anything against Syria (and, therefore, Russia). And what happens when you won’t dive in but you flirt a little bit with waist deep? Well you shoot down a Syrian jet and receive threats from Russia.
The biggest losers in all of this? The people. This is why you constantly see and hear stories about the horrors affecting millions of Syrians; they’re losing no matter which way you look at it, and it’s awful.
And that was blogging Syria. Don’t like it? Well you can check your fucking time stamps.