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cyppok
06 Jul 12,, 23:31
Think about it this way the country goes into an uprising spiral the army is still holding up and the Alawites push for an exit plan. Ergo complete fracture and independence of the Alawite state as it was under the French. Most of good military equipment is shifted and natural border is set up at the mountains. In addition other minorities are given the same option. Druze etc...

Assad goes along with it by becoming king of the new state... and Syria fractures loosing sea access and going into full scale civil war. There is some ethnic push from one area to another similar to Turkey/Greece post 1900s.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Druze_state
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Intervention occurs by Turkey into Northern Areas and SHTF, with Kurds in Al-Hasakah Governorate declaring a state as well after being armed by Alawites prior to the fracture. Post fracture they would attempt to join with Iraqi Kurdistan which sends reinforcements to enforce the new border.

Anything else I am not thinking about is welcome. Please contribute how else this could come about and what else could go wrong.

zraver
07 Jul 12,, 00:52
Think about it this way the country goes into an uprising spiral the army is still holding up and the Alawites push for an exit plan. Ergo complete fracture and independence of the Alawite state as it was under the French. Most of good military equipment is shifted and natural border is set up at the mountains. In addition other minorities are given the same option. Druze etc...

Assad goes along with it by becoming king of the new state... and Syria fractures loosing sea access and going into full scale civil war. There is some ethnic push from one area to another similar to Turkey/Greece post 1900s.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Druze_state
29571

Intervention occurs by Turkey into Northern Areas and SHTF, with Kurds in Al-Hasakah Governorate declaring a state as well after being armed by Alawites prior to the fracture. Post fracture they would attempt to join with Iraqi Kurdistan which sends reinforcements to enforce the new border.

Anything else I am not thinking about is welcome. Please contribute how else this could come about and what else could go wrong.

If Syrian and Iraqi Kurds seek a state Turkey will invade which poses huge problems for the US and Iran.

cyppok
07 Jul 12,, 01:39
If Syrian and Iraqi Kurds seek a state Turkey will invade which poses huge problems for the US and Iran.

You are forgeting that most of the officer core is Alawite and they have good AA (sorta I don't really know but look at this as the SHTF scenario anyways).

Total civil war total fracture. Yes Turkey may invade but then this become not only a civil war but also an external war.

Iran will be forced by the very nature of things to support Kurds (even though it is suppressing its own) and those Iraqi Kurds will have to provide aid to the Syrian ones. You have to think and take into account other players like Russia and Mid-East Arab states whom will want Turkey out no matter what because it might have long lasting incursion and control over an Arab state. etc...

snapper
09 Jul 12,, 08:19
Turkey can't invade or we loose Azerbaijan and Georgia.

Doktor
09 Jul 12,, 09:33
Snapper,

Care to enlight us? :matrix:

zraver
10 Jul 12,, 04:51
Turkey can't invade or we loose Azerbaijan and Georgia.

Do you think Turkey would care stacked against the risk of a Kurdish state?

Cyppok,

Iran's reaction to a Turkish invasion will go one of 3 ways- 1. support the Alawaites and oppose the invasion, 2. support Iraq which ever way Iraq jumps, or 3. support Turkey. 1. Is the most likely action and the one with the least benefit to Iran. 2. Means Iran will be praying the US decides to abandon the Kurds again and pressures Iraq to do the same. This would give Iran an effective status quo antebellum situation at the risk of losing face. 3. Offers Iran the most benefit, in particular sanction busting overland black market trading.

cyppok
10 Jul 12,, 17:44
Do you think Turkey would care stacked against the risk of a Kurdish state?

Cyppok,

Iran's reaction to a Turkish invasion will go one of 3 ways- 1. support the Alawaites and oppose the invasion, 2. support Iraq which ever way Iraq jumps, or 3. support Turkey. 1. Is the most likely action and the one with the least benefit to Iran. 2. Means Iran will be praying the US decides to abandon the Kurds again and pressures Iraq to do the same. This would give Iran an effective status quo antebellum situation at the risk of losing face. 3. Offers Iran the most benefit, in particular sanction busting overland black market trading.

Somewhat don't understand your first question.

Kurdish state already exists de-facto all they have to do is decide when they declare it de-jure. Iran will support the Kurdish state if it sees being cut off from Mediteranian and Kurdish state being the only way to keep that connection. Mind you there are pipelines being laid gas and oil and restored from Iran through Iraq to the Syrian coast. Iran negotiating with Iraq Kurds for recognition of their border and continuation of those projects that allow Iran to survive economically will beat Turkish intervention since that by most points would mean Nato and Us pressure to cut those pipelines out in favor of some other aspect.

Iran cannot support Turkey from a simple balance of power perspective. It will be very easy to turn it against Turkey if it invades and market the conflict as an ethnic domination Arab vs Turk instead of Sunni vs Shiite, in some ways it will be true in other it will not be.

The biggest fear for Iran would be completely pushed out of some regional dominance in the Arab world which it has right now. That dominance allows it to continue trade ties which may seem small from our perspective but very real and necessary for them.
Fear of Iran and Syrian Bloodletting | The Diplomat (http://thediplomat.com/2012/07/09/fear-of-iran-and-syrian-bloodletting/)

Even my fracture scenario would be viable since the ports would be controlled by the Alawite state and it would negotiate with rump Syria for access as long as it gets gas/oil transit from Iran.

Why Iran Eyes a Syrian Civil War | The Diplomat (http://thediplomat.com/2011/09/02/why-iran-eyes-syrian-civil-war/)

gunnut
10 Jul 12,, 20:22
Why should we care? What's in it for us?

Double Edge
10 Jul 12,, 22:50
If Syrian and Iraqi Kurds seek a state Turkey will invade which poses huge problems for the US and Iran.
Remember a discussion with S2 & TTL a while back where i was surprised to learn that Turkey would not mind an independent Kurdistan in Iraq.

Not saying this applies to Syria.

cyppok
10 Jul 12,, 23:10
Well Gunnut apparently we do care due to our involvement via Mrs. Clinton rooting for intervention and pressing it on all sides.

I actually think a more fractured middle east would be better. Ergo more countries vying with each other and none too strong to overtake one another forced to compete like Europe in the middle ages where by every principality granted rights and freedoms to entice industry. Etc...

So a Kurdistan, Alawaitistan, JabelDruzistan, and a perhaps Allepostan(North Syria) and Damscustan(South Syria) would be better in my mind than Syria. Granted I also think it would be nicer for Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, Afghanistan to fracture as well.

gunnut
11 Jul 12,, 01:14
Well Gunnut apparently we do care due to our involvement via Mrs. Clinton rooting for intervention and pressing it on all sides.

I actually think a more fractured middle east would be better. Ergo more countries vying with each other and none too strong to overtake one another forced to compete like Europe in the middle ages where by every principality granted rights and freedoms to entice industry. Etc...

So a Kurdistan, Alawaitistan, JabelDruzistan, and a perhaps Allepostan(North Syria) and Damscustan(South Syria) would be better in my mind than Syria. Granted I also think it would be nicer for Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, Afghanistan to fracture as well.

In that case, we should just let them fight, which was my original view on Libya. It doesn't matter what we do, they hate us. They blame us for everything. So why work on being hated when we can be hated while sitting on our asses?

snapper
11 Jul 12,, 04:46
Snapper,

Care to enlight us? :matrix:


Iran's reaction to a Turkish invasion will go one of 3 ways- 1. support the Alawaites and oppose the invasion, 2. support Iraq which ever way Iraq jumps, or 3. support Turkey. 1. Is the most likely action and the one with the least benefit to Iran. 2. Means Iran will be praying the US decides to abandon the Kurds again and pressures Iraq to do the same. This would give Iran an effective status quo antebellum situation at the risk of losing face. 3. Offers Iran the most benefit, in particular sanction busting overland black market trading.

zraver

Iran IS supporting Assad. Assad is supporting the Kurdish attacks on Turkey. Turkey and the Gulf Arabs are supporting the 'Free Syrian Army'. Many proxy wars going on here. On the larger scale this is about the Iranian nuclear issue: If a pro Gulf Arab Government is installed in Damascus we are one step closer to dealing with the real problem and coincidentally Hezbollah supplies would be more difficult. Of course a nuclear armed Iran will want to dictate oil policy to the Gulf Arabs and can interfer in Iraq with relative impunity, as well a wage a continuous proxy war on Israel via Hezbollah. The Russians just want their sea base and do not want to be seen lose face. zraver there are Kurds in Syria and Iran too and of course they dream of a 'Greater Kudistan' with bits of Iraq, Turkey, Syria and Iran and this is why they normaly lose; fighting on four fronts at once. Iran doesn't care who rules in Damascus as long as they are pro Iran and anti Gulf Arabs. Turkey is already fighting a proxy war with Assad and want him gone. The Russians may be willing to back someone else but want promises in blood first; they met with Opposition groups in Moscow the other day and have said they will not make any arms deals with Assad but will honour existing contracts.

Dok

In the larger picture of the Iranian nuclear problem Azerbaijan controls the non Russian gas feed for Europe. The pipleline goes via Georgia as the old Armenian/Turkish enmity closes the border there. There is also a Russian base (102) 35 miles north of Yerevan. The real problem with the South Ossetia war - the pipelines are within closer range of a Russian move now. Azerbaijan has also not specificaly denied that it has leased an airbase to Israel. Azerbaijan and Georgia are both wannabe NATO members and Azerbaijan is closely allied to Turkey. Yerevan (the Armenian capital) is less than 10 miles from the Turkish border and Baku (the Azeri capital) about 130 miles from Russian Dagestan and less from Iran. So if Turkey gets bogged down in a Syrian civil war Iran must be postponed as the threat of a Turkish intervention is all that could save Azerbaijan and Georgia (and the non Russian gas) should we start on Iran, whether by air or more fully. With no non Russian gas for Europe blackmail then becomes possible over the missile shield. The worst case is nuclear Iran and loss of Caspian gas and double blackmails on two fronts.

cyppok
11 Jul 12,, 16:54
zraver

Iran IS supporting Assad. Assad is supporting the Kurdish attacks on Turkey. Turkey and the Gulf Arabs are supporting the 'Free Syrian Army'. Many proxy wars going on here. On the larger scale this is about the Iranian nuclear issue: If a pro Gulf Arab Government is installed in Damascus we are one step closer to dealing with the real problem and coincidentally Hezbollah supplies would be more difficult. Of course a nuclear armed Iran will want to dictate oil policy to the Gulf Arabs and can interfer in Iraq with relative impunity, as well a wage a continuous proxy war on Israel via Hezbollah. The Russians just want their sea base and do not want to be seen lose face. zraver there are Kurds in Syria and Iran too and of course they dream of a 'Greater Kudistan' with bits of Iraq, Turkey, Syria and Iran and this is why they normaly lose; fighting on four fronts at once. Iran doesn't care who rules in Damascus as long as they are pro Iran and anti Gulf Arabs. Turkey is already fighting a proxy war with Assad and want him gone. The Russians may be willing to back someone else but want promises in blood first; they met with Opposition groups in Moscow the other day and have said they will not make any arms deals with Assad but will honour existing contracts.

Dok

In the larger picture of the Iranian nuclear problem Azerbaijan controls the non Russian gas feed for Europe. The pipleline goes via Georgia as the old Armenian/Turkish enmity closes the border there. There is also a Russian base (102) 35 miles north of Yerevan. The real problem with the South Ossetia war - the pipelines are within closer range of a Russian move now. Azerbaijan has also not specificaly denied that it has leased an airbase to Israel. Azerbaijan and Georgia are both wannabe NATO members and Azerbaijan is closely allied to Turkey. Yerevan (the Armenian capital) is less than 10 miles from the Turkish border and Baku (the Azeri capital) about 130 miles from Russian Dagestan and less from Iran. So if Turkey gets bogged down in a Syrian civil war Iran must be postponed as the threat of a Turkish intervention is all that could save Azerbaijan and Georgia (and the non Russian gas) should we start on Iran, whether by air or more fully. With no non Russian gas for Europe blackmail then becomes possible over the missile shield. The worst case is nuclear Iran and loss of Caspian gas and double blackmails on two fronts.

Iran wouldn't strike inside Azerbaidjan to cut off gas to Turkey nor would Russia at least not directly. If Azerbaidjan and Armenia resume their war it is possible but unlikely since everyone with vested interests would rush to get involved.
For Iran the most likely way of cutting off energy would be Kurdish insurgency all over Turkish areas and specific bounties tied to gas line disruptions.

Turkey vs Iran war on the ground is extremely unlikely.
Azerbaidjan and Iran relations have been going down hill rapidly lately.
The problem with [land]intervention in a Post-Soviet state is it will irk Russia and other Central Asian states, Iran needs grain from both Russia/Kazakhstan for stability it wouldn't intervene(land incursion) to endanger that. But the incursions air or sea won't really make anyone vince too much.

Iran, Azerbaijan In Tense Caspian Standoff, Cables Show | EurasiaNet.org (http://www.eurasianet.org/node/64268)
Tensions rise between Iran and Azerbaijan | World | DW.DE | 07.06.2012 (http://www.dw.de/dw/article/0,,16006008,00.html)

The likeliest intervention if it happens is not the pipeline but the gathering and the sea or near sea platforms in the Caspian that could easily be attacked by Iran and the ramifications of it as a protracted aspect are limited.

snapper
11 Jul 12,, 23:06
People I speak to tend to disagree Cypook.

cyppok
12 Jul 12,, 19:55
People I speak to tend to disagree Cypook.

Disagreement is ok the problem is thus far what I said about PKK and Syrian Alawites backing each other is true and the reverse is not.

This is Turkey reporting what is happening on the ground as it sees things so even if it is biased it is against the way I see things.

Thus far the fracturing scenario about which I wrote about a year or so ago is very close to occurring I just re-started a new thread instead of quoting the old one.

The problem with people like us is we like to pontificate, I know I do. What I try doing in this thread is basically show if what we think and what happens on the ground proves or disproves what we expect.


Imagine if Russia by helping to create an Alawite state gains the same position in Mediterranean as Britain did in Cyprus, ergo Sovereign Bases (Naval and Air) please tell me would you get involved if that was the outcome?
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akrotiri_and_Dhekelia
Outlet to the Mediteranian and gas/oil deals for pipeline extensions into export hub similar to what Turkey has and some control over flow... etc.

The reality is even Europe doesn't want the Iran-Iraq-Syria -> Turkey pipeline interrupted while it is being built.

Syria fracturing would change the balance of power so much that there would actively be a no mans land from Iraqi Kurdistan and Sunni areas of Iraq through Middle Syria up to Druze and Alawite areas which can separate if they hold geographical positions and have some help. Alawites care very much what happens post-Assad they realize they need an exit plan and long ago (about 50-60 years) their autonomy under French was a good guideline, they control the military why wouldn't they go independent? and create another Levantine state.

snapper
13 Jul 12,, 18:11
Syria is not the problem. Ideally a less pro Iranian Government there would be nice but it can rumble on and it ties down one Iranian ally. In two years Iran will have a viable bomb - that is the problem. The Gulf Arab/Iran contest is using both Assad and the rebels as a prelude to an inevitable decision that must be made.

cyppok
13 Jul 12,, 22:50
Syria is not the problem. Ideally a less pro Iranian Government there would be nice but it can rumble on and it ties down one Iranian ally. In two years Iran will have a viable bomb - that is the problem. The Gulf Arab/Iran contest is using both Assad and the rebels as a prelude to an inevitable decision that must be made.

The only way to change the dynamic is to launch a huge play for the region that simply forces Iran to act. From Afghanistan through Mediteranian the mix of religions and ethnicities is in play. Notice the dynamic change in Iraq with religious and ethnic push by the regions to homogeniety by violence or other means.

I really do think that if Syrian Arab Sunnis go the revival route and integrate with the Iraqi Arab Sunnis their ideology and expectations will align to create a "Greater Syria" which will be more or less opposed by Iran. All of this would be far better underlined if the Area in a sense becomes landlocked vis a vis Alawite secession.

Iran is trying to balance itself on the end of cash flow problems vis a vis oil for things and then for gold and other aspects to skirt not being allowed to clear payments through SWIFT interchange, it also has some problems with post drought yields and grain dependence on Russia/Kazakhstan since other suppliers are more or less self-embargoing themselves from supplying it.

In two years US will pull out of Afghanistan and the suction effect may push Iran and Pakistan into establishing competing influences within it and a semi-simmering border war fed by Iran on one side and waged by Pakistan on the other with destabilizing tribal areas. On the other side Iran is feeding the shiite arabs in Iraq in a similar fashion and yet it has to finance both those aspects with non-clearing payments ergo gold or some other fashion since currency markets are kind of closed.

Iran has youth dissent problems but the geopolitical and fiscal restraints are also there. Food and fiscal flows won't really be impacted by anything that happens right now. The biggest change that could occur is Iran going into another country. It is so extremely unlikely due to them being able to play subversion wars with militants and shadow support of groups either of their own making or available on the ground at a price only paramount core interests would force them to act.

Sunni revival in the region could but they have good proxy in Shiites in Iraq etc... The biggest problem that could occur is actual lack of confrontation. Ergo all those Sunnis split and form a seperate state defacto and the Shiites would be ok with it. Then we have a shift to ethnic nationalism from religious and enemies of yesterday become friends of today it would turn inside out the whole dynamic of the region. Pan-Arab nationalism pushing out Iran and forcing it to defend its polyethnic make-up internally from funded secessionist movements on all sides. Ergo Azeri secessionism in north Arab in south. Its possible very unlikely though.
Iran: To Protest Rising Prices, Iranians Boycotting Grocery Stores (http://www.eurasianet.org/node/65602)

The grass-roots campaign, which ran from Saturday through Monday, wasn't affiliated with any opposition group. Dozens of Iranians said in interviews and on social-networking sites and blogs that they had participated in the boycott, and a number of bakeries and grocery stores across Tehran, the capital, reported declines in milk and bread sales of as much as 90%.

Iran's economy has been deteriorating amid domestic mismanagement, corruption and international sanctions that have made it difficult for manufacturers to import raw material and to conduct banking transactions. A European Union embargo on Iranian oil is set to start July 1.

Prices of basic goods rise almost daily. Independent economists estimate annual inflation is hovering between 50% and 60%. In the past two weeks, the price of bread has increased 33%, chicken 28.5% and milk prices are climbing daily, according to Iranian newspapers and semiofficial news websites.

Double Edge
13 Jul 12,, 23:10
Anything else I am not thinking about is welcome.
Take a look at this picture.

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Its an absolute mess.


Please contribute how else this could come about and what else could go wrong...

and Syria fractures loosing sea access and going into full scale civil war. There is some ethnic push from one area to another similar to Turkey/Greece post 1900s.

Intervention occurs by Turkey into Northern Areas and SHTF, with Kurds in Al-Hasakah Governorate declaring a state as well after being armed by Alawites prior to the fracture. Post fracture they would attempt to join with Iraqi Kurdistan which sends reinforcements to enforce the new border.
Who is interested in such an outcome ? nobody i think

Who wants a festering sore of instability that will cause trouble to its neighbours.


Think about it this way the country goes into an uprising spiral the army is still holding up and the Alawites push for an exit plan. Ergo complete fracture and independence of the Alawite state as it was under the French.
How about we give Assad an out and the country elects a new leader and stays intact.

I don't know whether Assad will accept such a deal.

cyppok
13 Jul 12,, 23:43
only Sovereignty can give Assad an out, ergo if he stays Sovereign or within a Sovereign country.

If Alawite State becomes independent its also an out... but it would be for most Alawites that do not want to go through the power struggle and loss post transition. Most of them realize this would be the optimal out scenario and control of ports and sea access with a mountain border really is enforceable as long as there is recognition and enforcement of it at lest initially.

Nobody is interested in the outcome of fracture but everyone is doing their best that it becomes the only outcome.

The picture is not a mess but what actually was on the ground during French mandate within Syria.

Double Edge
14 Jul 12,, 00:08
only Sovereignty can give Assad an out, ergo if he stays Sovereign or within a Sovereign country.
Was thinking more on the lines of an exile out of Syria to another country.


If Alawite State becomes independent its also an out... but it would be for most Alawites that do not want to go through the power struggle and loss post transition. Most of them realize this would be the optimal out scenario and control of ports and sea access with a mountain border really is enforceable as long as there is recognition and enforcement of it at lest initially.
This depends on how threatened they feel.


Nobody is interested in the outcome of fracture but everyone is doing their best that it becomes the only outcome.
Which direction are the various forces moving here ?

In a direction that tears Syria apart or in a way they cancel out others.

There's lot of fingers in this pie which act in ways to preserve their influence. Doesn't that require Syria be whole. How will those numerous interests be served with the disintegration of Syria.


The picture is not a mess but what actually was on the ground during French mandate within Syria.
That's a sectarian makeup, not an ethnic one. The only people that might want to break away are the Kurds.

I think reverting back to the old setup is unlikely. Its the most expensive option for everybody concerned.

cyppok
14 Jul 12,, 20:46
I think reverting back to the old setup is unlikely. Its the most expensive option for everybody concerned.

Going independent is not the most expensive option, going extinct is or being thrown into exile not on your own terms, for a population of society. You think those Alawites near Homs and Hama will survive a bitter sectarian struggle after they loose power?

Kurds are essentially being given a de-facto will to defend their area from other parties. Shabithas in Alawite areas are doing the same on a shadow level (no flags yet).
Alawite fortress and Sunni wasteland in Syria (http://english.alarabiya.net/articles/2012/06/19/221503.html)

The rebellious districts that once belonged to Sunni Muslims are ghost towns. Only about three of the 16 Sunni districts have not been pommelled by military assaults.
Many Alawites say they feel they have no choice but to back Assad, fearing retaliatory slaughter for religious affiliation with the president as the revolt becomes increasingly sectarian.

“The Sunnis have been oppressed,” said one Alawite man. “But Alawites will be the victims.”
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Confusion About Syria (http://geocurrents.info/geopolitics/confusion-about-syrias-alawites)

Iran would be fine pushing Syria to break up because they at least control something but happy with status quo.
Turkey would be fine trying to push it to the brink because they want regime change with favorable power shift, with fair disregard what happens to social stratification post outcome, we don't hear the news but it happens.
US, and Europe are same thought of mind as Turkey, power projection and enforcement via favorable government is more important than social outcomes afterwards the CNNs of the world will move on elsewhere and we will get less news stories on what happens on the ground, which may be worse than it is now.
Russia wants things as they are or an orderly transition without social unrest which they will probably not get.

Sunnis on the ground want representation and power shift, once this occurs they will try to dominate every area where they were lacking and it will be a giant free for all with similar repression as before to establish dominance.
Alawites want status quo but are preparing for long term sectarian violence if you notice by militarizing themselves. If there was large scale loss of control in Syria which there isn't now the people in charge might think of separation and independence since they would have enforcement due to militarization of people on the ground. In some ways them having armed groups under their umbrella and a ready populous beats numerical advantages of Sunnis for now and into a possible break-up since they could enforce a border somewhere at least.
Everyone that can is leaving the area because they know it will get worse before it gets better.

Hitman817
14 Jul 12,, 23:23
only Sovereignty can give Assad an out, ergo if he stays Sovereign or within a Sovereign country.

If Alawite State becomes independent its also an out... but it would be for most Alawites that do not want to go through the power struggle and loss post transition. Most of them realize this would be the optimal out scenario and control of ports and sea access with a mountain border really is enforceable as long as there is recognition and enforcement of it at lest initially.

Nobody is interested in the outcome of fracture but everyone is doing their best that it becomes the only outcome.

The picture is not a mess but what actually was on the ground during French mandate within Syria.

Your logic is flawed, the sunnies make up 80% of Syrias population, they would never accept a secession of the Alawites or any other minority. There is a civil war ongoing there and we will support the sunnies till they win.

cyppok
15 Jul 12,, 07:36
Your logic is flawed, the sunnies make up 80% of Syrias population, they would never accept a secession of the Alawites or any other minority. There is a civil war ongoing there and we will support the sunnies till they win.

We don't need to support anyone they can kill themselves without our support of either side.
The sunnis are lead mostly by religious jihadis and compared to those Assad isn't that bad as a socialistic minority dictator (at least from the outside perspective there is tolerance for minority groups which won't happen after religious sunnis take hold, since those are the ones being funded).

Sunnis make up about 65% or even less of Syria not 80%...

Kurds about 10% whom are likely Sunni will not support them are are de-facto autonimous with state support. Christians and Druze are around 10% and alawites are around 12%.
Furthermore if a minority is compactly living in an area like the Alawites are with geographic and military control they can go independent. You think Syria will be in a position to re-impose its' will if those mountain borders are enforced? (rhetorical question)

Armenians it seems are leaving the country according to Landis' blog, and the religious proliferation of the conflict is increasing dramatically.
Syria Comment (http://www.joshualandis.com/blog/)


Al-Qaeda tries to carve out a war for itself in Syria
By Ruth Sherlock, Idlib Province, 12 Jul 2012, Telegraph

Al-Qaeda has infiltrated into Syria and is working to establish footholds in the war-torn northern provinces.

Whilst the militant Islamic organisation’s influence remains small, home-grown jihadist groups that are linked with, or sympathetic to the ideals of movement are growing.


Syrian Armenians Starting To Take Refuge In Armenia
Jamestown Inst – July 11, 2012 — Volume 9, Issue 131

With fighting continuing to escalate in Syria and no end to the bloodshed on the horizon, a growing number of the country’s ethnic Armenians are looking to take refuge in Armenia. Hundreds of them are believed to have already moved to their ancestral homeland, while thousands of others have applied for Armenian citizenship in apparent preparation for such relocation. The authorities in Yerevan are facing growing calls from domestic opposition and public figures to encourage and assist in that influx.

Muslim brotherhood in Syria and the religious lean of insurgency is not a good sign. Another interesting aspect is that the army is actually winning those lopsided events with insurgents and pushing them into siege mentality.

I get a feeling that the Turkish, Saudi, Qatari, and other support for arming the rebels is growing, just like the arms support from Russia to Kurds and Syria is also growing. Iran is probably attempting to support Syria at least monetarily to a degree and provide some assistance otherwise.

UN observers say Syria attack targeted rebels - Middle East - Al Jazeera English (http://www.aljazeera.com/news/middleeast/2012/07/201271422479946799.html)

UN observers say Syria attack targeted rebels
Monitors say Thursday's assault on the village of Tremseh appeared targeted at army defectors and activists.
An attack earlier this week on a western Syrian village that the opposition has described as a "massacre" mainly targeted army defectors and anti-government activists, according to United Nations observers who visited the scene.

Syria: Religious extremism divides Free Syrian Army | GlobalPost (http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/middle-east/syria/120703/syria-religious-extremism-sectarian-violence-free-syrian-army-divisions)


Syria: A revolution divided

Syria's revolutionaries are getting worried that the Free Syrian Army is increasingly controlled by sectarian and religious radicals.
IDLIB DISTRICT, Syria — Like thousands of his fellow students, Diojen joined the revolution to bring freedom, democracy and dignity to the Syrian people.

But more and more these days, he said, he is being asked to bring Islam too.

Diojen said he has become disillusioned by the changing course of the revolution, which he says is being co-opted by religious and sectarian extremists within the Free Syrian Army. These extremists, while still the minority, are hoping for an Islamic government when all is said and done, Diojen said.

Hitman817
15 Jul 12,, 10:45
We don't need to support anyone they can kill themselves without our support of either side.
The sunnis are lead mostly by religious jihadis and compared to those Assad isn't that bad as a socialistic minority dictator (at least from the outside perspective there is tolerance for minority groups which won't happen after religious sunnis take hold, since those are the ones being funded).
We don't need to but we will do it anyway, because it is in our interest. And your claim, that the Sunnies are lead by Jihadists is just nonsense, the Sunni opposition is build up by Turkey as well es the US and I'm sure they know whom to support.


Sunnis make up about 65% or even less of Syria not 80%...

Kurds about 10% whom are likely Sunni will not support them are are de-facto autonimous with state support. Christians and Druze are around 10% and alawites are around 12%.
Stay with the facts. Kurds cant make up 10% of Syrias population if there are only about 10% Ethnic non-Arabs such as Armenians, Druze and Kurds. Armenians are getting out and Kurds are so few they wont matter... The only real problem is the Alawite minority.



Syria:

Population: 22,530,746 (July 2012 est.)

Ethnic groups: 90.3% Arabs, 9.7 Kurds, Armenians and others

Religions: Sunni Muslim (Islam - official) 74%, other Muslim (includes Alawite, Druze) 16%, Christian (various denominations) 10%, Jewish (tiny communities in Damascus, Al Qamishli, and Aleppo)

Source: CIA Factbook (https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/sy.html)


Furthermore if a minority is compactly living in an area like the Alawites are with geographic and military control they can go independent.
That's just more crap, Alawites share no border with any country that supports them (Iran, Russia), they are isolated, and so few compared to the Sunnis they will cumble soner or later. And no country not even Russia or Iran would recognize an Alewite state officialy


You think Syria will be in a position to re-impose its' will if those mountain borders are enforced? (rhetorical question)
It is just basic math, the sunnis will take controll all of Syria, we will support them till they do.


Armenians it seems are leaving the country according to Landis' blog, and the religious proliferation of the conflict is increasing dramatically.
good for them.




Muslim brotherhood in Syria and the religious lean of insurgency is not a good sign. Another interesting aspect is that the army is actually winning those lopsided events with insurgents and pushing them into siege mentality.
Just more wishfull thinking on your part, you Greeks seem to do that alot. ; )


I get a feeling that the Turkish, Saudi, Qatari, and other support for arming the rebels is growing, just like the arms support from Russia to Kurds and Syria is also growing.
At some point Russia will stop its support for Assad, this will happen if they think the Assadregime is losing and from that point they will start negotiations with the Opposition, oh wait a minite they had their first meeting last week. ; )


Iran is probably attempting to support Syria at least monetarily to a degree and provide some assistance otherwise.
Iran itself is in deep trouble... and has no land connection to Syria.

Doktor
15 Jul 12,, 11:16
good for them.
Why?


Just more wishfull thinking on your part, you Greeks seem to do that alot. ; )
I thought he is Expat Russian, hence his signature.


Iran itself is in deep trouble... and has no land connection to Syria.
No land border never stopped them supporting Hezbollah. And that's across two land borders instead of one.

cyppok
15 Jul 12,, 11:33
The quote and link I provided support my case that most of the movement is being hijacked by jihadis in Syria, the secular forces are essentially those of the government in charge now. You provided nothing to support your case.

Like I said Sunni Arabs are about 60+-5% of population, Sunni Kurds support the regime because they have been given de-facto autonomy its' in the link I provided on this thread, and in another link they walked out on meetings in Turkey with opposition because those did not promise to honor that autonomy if they reached power.

Russia and Iran have no reason to stop support until the situation shows they regime or secular elements lost total control and no point in helping anymore. They tried negotiating with opposition, it failed. One of the first things in negotiations is that you are able to give as well as take, unfortunately for the opposition they do not want to give any assurances or promises but want extractions of those themselves. In life you cannot get something you do not pay for. Nor do the US, Turkey, Qatar or anyone else. Support will gradually continue until there is a clear winner or until intervention to tip the scales.

I am not Greek... notice my signature.

You are distorting the percentages of the factbook the 74% includes Sunni Kurds which are about 12-14%... which makes it around 62-60 Sunni Arab it is likely that if Christians leave their proportion will go up though. See the you confused the Religious: tag with automatically dividing by ethnicity... If you want you could take that 74%-9.7%(Kurds)=64.3% ... You also have to remember that a lot of Kurds weren't counted because they were non-citizens and were only re-granted their citizenship a year or so ago (http://edition.cnn.com/2011/WORLD/meast/04/07/syria.kurdish.citizenship/)... They weren't counted lowering the amount of Kurds on paper(statistics wise) by 1/3rd to 1/4th of whats on the ground.

Human Rights Watch, which notes that the Kurds are the largest non-Arab ethnic minority in Syria, estimated the Kurdish population to be 1.7 million, about 10 percent of Syria's population.

Iran has no land connection to Lebanon either but apparently they support and arm Hazbolah there, I am sure the Shiites in Iraq will help them to transit supply into Syria...
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_SyriaWiki doesn't take into account the shift in citizenship a year ago I presume.

Approximately 60-65% Sunni Arab Majority in Syria perhaps a little more perhaps not.

The stupidity of sectarian civil wars is that the Arabs in Syria whom are Christian are literally ethnic kin of those Sunni Arabs they are the same people genetically essentially. No language or ethnic barriers, same with Alawites...

Hitman817
15 Jul 12,, 11:46
Why?
Much safer.


I thought he is Expat Russian, hence his signature.
And I thought he was a Greek-Australian.



No land border never stopped them supporting Hezbollah. And that's across two land borders instead of one.

They supported Hezbollah through Syria and the Fall of the Assadregime will end this.

Hitman817
15 Jul 12,, 12:33
The quote and link I provided support my case that most of the movement is being hijacked by jihadis in Syria, the secular forces are essentially those of the government in charge now. You provided nothing to support your case.
Your quote doesn't prove anything, as I stated, Tukey and the US have their experts on the ground and they wont support Jihadists and you shouldn't confuse jihadists with the Brotherhood, its not the same.


Like I said Sunni Arabs are about 60+-5% of population, Sunni Kurds support the regime because they have been given de-facto autonomy its' in the link I provided on this thread
Yes yes the one Mio Kurd got autonomy, aaaaa were given..... what a nonsense.:whome:

,
and in another link they walked out on meetings in Turkey with opposition because those did not promise to honor that autonomy if they reached power.
So what, as I stated, they are so few they dont matter.


Russia and Iran have no reason to stop support until the situation shows they regime or secular elements lost total control and no point in helping anymore.
Exactly what I'm saying. They will stop their support when it is clear that the Assadregime will lose.


They tried negotiating with opposition, it failed.
They will reach a sollution or Russia will lose everything, when the Assadregime goes.



I am not Greek... notice my signature.

Sorry for insulting you.


You are distorting the percentages of the factbook the 74% includes Sunni Kurds which are about 12-14%... which makes it around 62-60 Sunni Arab it is likely that if Christians leave their proportion will go up though. See the you confused the Religious: tag with automatically dividing by ethnicity... If you want you could take that 74%-9.7%(Kurds)=64.3%
I take it math isn't your fortee.... Kurds don't make up 9.7% of the Population. 9.7% Is all of the non-Arab ethnic group together i.e. Kurds, Armenians and Druze.



Arab 90.3%, Kurds, Armenians, and other 9.7%

-----
Sunni Muslim (Islam - official) 74%, other Muslim (includes Alawite, Druze) 16%, Christian (various denominations) 10%, Jewish (tiny communities in Damascus, Al Qamishli, and Aleppo)

And now lets do the math:
If Ethnic Arabs are 90.3% and Alawites lets say 16% ( I'm guessing Druze don't even make up 1% since Sunni Moslem in their
entirety Arabs + Kurds make up 74%) than the Kurds make up only 0.3% of the population and that if don't consider the Druze population at all. That means there are only a few hundered Thousend Kurds in Syria. That is nothing, so I don't see why you think they will get anything out of this.:confused:


... You also have to remember that a lot of Kurds weren't counted because they were non-citizens and were only re-granted their citizenship a year or so ago (http://edition.cnn.com/2011/WORLD/meast/04/07/syria.kurdish.citizenship/)... They weren't counted lowering the amount of Kurds on paper(statistics wise) by 1/3rd to 1/4th of whats on the ground.

Yes about 50 000.








Iran has no land connection to Lebanon either but apparently they support and arm Hazbolah there, I am sure the Shiites in Iraq will help them to transit supply into Syria...
As I allready stated Iran used Syria to arm and train Hezbollah, this option will soon not be available anymore. And there are also Sunnis in Iraq, so it will be much more difficult to support the Hezbolloh over Iraq.


Approximately 60-65% Sunni Arab Majority in Syria perhaps a little more perhaps not.

NO, 74% without the Kurds, that's what the CIA Factbook says.

Doktor
15 Jul 12,, 12:58
Much safer.
Are you implying that the next regime will be hostile towards them? 100-150k people should move away to feel safe? They are citizens of Syria, why should they go elsewhere? They will be strangers wherever they move.


They supported Hezbollah through Syria and the Fall of the Assadregime will end this.
So, there is a way to transport 'aid' to Syria from Iran.

Hitman817
15 Jul 12,, 13:10
Are you implying that the next regime will be hostile towards them? 100-150k people should move away to feel safe? They are citizens of Syria, why should they go elsewhere? They will be strangers wherever they move.
They might, since they support the Assadregime and thus they are also responsible for their crimes. In other words, they made their bed....



So, there is a way to transport 'aid' to Syria from Iran.
Yes, there is a new invention called plane, it can fly through air.....

Doktor
15 Jul 12,, 13:21
They might, since they support the Assadregime and thus they are also responsible for their crimes. In other words, they made their bed...
His policies were never bad towards them. Are they taking part in the violence?
How this new regime will be better if they oppress the minorities?



Yes, there is a new invention called plane, it can fly through air.....
You implied there is no way for Iran to send help to Syria, I just pointed out it was done through the years.

Hitman817
15 Jul 12,, 14:07
His policies were never bad towards them. Are they taking part in the violence?
How this new regime will be better if they oppress the minorities?
It will be better for Turkey, US, Israel and the Arabs.



You implied there is no way for Iran to send help to Syria, I just pointed out it was done through the years.
Yes Iran can send help via Airplane, as long as the Assadregime controls airfields but Cypok postulates that the Alewites concentrate in the Montain areas, where they are the majority. They wont control any airfields and even if they did, to support someone vie planes is much more expensive than via land or water ways Tukey and its allies are in a much better position, are much richer, much more advanced and they are supporting the majority.

Believe me there is no way the Assadregime will survive this.

Doktor
15 Jul 12,, 14:34
It will be better for Turkey, US, Israel and the Arabs.
Like Egypt?


Yes Iran can send help via Airplane, as long as the Assadregime controls airfields but Cypok postulates that the Alewites concentrate in the Montain areas, where they are the majority. They wont control any airfields and even if they did, to support someone vie planes is much more expensive than via land or water ways Tukey and its allies are in a much better position, are much richer, much more advanced and they are supporting the majority.

Believe me there is no way the Assadregime will survive this.
Che sarà, sarà. Those who will survive will tell.

Dante
15 Jul 12,, 15:13
It will be better for Turkey, US, Israel and the Arabs.


Do you mean "better for us, as in we get a proxy"? Because I can't actually see how another failed state will be better...
Also, in the meantime, you think thats it's safer for certain sirian citizens to leave or be subjected to (posible) ethnic cleansing if the rebelion succedes.



Yes Iran can send help via Airplane, as long as the Assadregime controls airfields but Cypok postulates that the Alewites concentrate in the Montain areas, where they are the majority. They wont control any airfields and even if they did, to support someone vie planes is much more expensive than via land or water ways Tukey and its allies are in a much better position, are much richer, much more advanced and they are supporting the majority.

Believe me there is no way the Assadregime will survive this.

Good for you..and yet, after 17 months, with the majority in uprising, all the suport you mentioned, no regime change in site.
Guess time will tell..

cyppok
15 Jul 12,, 19:09
The Alawites control the coast and sea access. Iran can and does send ships with supplies just like Russia. Lebanon borders Syria with shiites there that can traffic aid if needed. It can be sent through Iraq etc...

Manipulating numbers that are not there does not prove your point.
Religious make up of the country is 74% sunni with Kurds counted in. Ergo around 62% sunni arab if you take them out. About 300k-500k Kurds are non-citizens according to Human Rights Watch and in 1962 120k lost citizenship (and grew to those 300-500k).
Yes they are a small minority but they are in an area that has contiguous border with Iraqi Kurdistan which has about 5-7 million people, oil revenues, and some military strength.


Al-Qaeda tries to carve out a war for itself in Syria
By Ruth Sherlock, Idlib Province, 12 Jul 2012, Telegraph
(http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/syria/9396256/Al-Qaeda-tries-to-carve-out-a-war-for-itself-in-Syria.html)

Al-Qaeda has infiltrated into Syria and is working to establish footholds in the war-torn northern provinces.

Whilst the militant Islamic organisation’s influence remains small, home-grown jihadist groups that are linked with, or sympathetic to the ideals of movement are growing.
(external view)

Syria: Religious extremism divides Free Syrian Army | GlobalPost (http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/middle-east/syria/120703/syria-religious-extremism-sectarian-violence-free-syrian-army-divisions)

Syria: A revolution divided
Syria's revolutionaries are getting worried that the Free Syrian Army is increasingly controlled by sectarian and religious radicals.

IDLIB DISTRICT, Syria — Like thousands of his fellow students, Diojen joined the revolution to bring freedom, democracy and dignity to the Syrian people.

But more and more these days, he said, he is being asked to bring Islam too.

Diojen said he has become disillusioned by the changing course of the revolution, which he says is being co-opted by religious and sectarian extremists within the Free Syrian Army. These extremists, while still the minority, are hoping for an Islamic government when all is said and done, Diojen said.

“If the revolution is for a new dictatorship, what are we dying for?” he asked, adding that his greatest fear is not for himself but for Syria's diverse minority population. “The real revolution will start when this one ends.”


Fighters like Nader Ajini, who calls himself a “moderate Muslim,” say they worry that international support is flowing directly to the more extreme, violent elements of the Free Syrian Army. Although religious extremists are a minority, Ajini said they receive the vast majority of funding and weapons and the pressure is mounting on moderates to join them.

“Knowing that we have nothing to fight with, a religious militant leader offered me a Kalashnikov with magazines, immunities and money to join their Islamic group,” Ajini said. “I refused his offer because I just want to fight the regime to get freedom and democracy for my people. Many people are now exposed to this kind of blackmailing.”
(Internal View)

Backing is mainly flowing to fundamentalists it seems. It would be hard to fight a regime with the same secular base that underpins its power. So there is an effort to rile up the populous a bit and the only way that happens if you go out on the political spectrum to the extremes.

Radicalization works, the problem is that an all out civil war will create an environment where minorities where they dominate will effectively separate and the fracture will occur. For now this is still somewhat contained.

Hitman817
15 Jul 12,, 20:11
Like Egypt?
In Egypt only Mubarak was removed, not the regime (Millitary hardcore secularists), the Powerstrugle is still ongoing. If they are removed, Egypt will get as successfull as Turkey. Egypt is the perfect example, not only Assad needs to go but the whole regime.

Hitman817
15 Jul 12,, 20:18
Do you mean "better for us, as in we get a proxy"? Because I can't actually see how another failed state will be better...
Not only for us, it will also be better for the majority of Syrians and democracy, you would never get a democratic regime there if you leave the minority Alewite Regime in power, because they know, that they would never win in a fair election so they have to suppress the majority for ever.


Also, in the meantime, you think thats it's safer for certain sirian citizens to leave or be subjected to (posible) ethnic cleansing if the rebelion succedes.

It depends on how the minorities now behave, if there is too much bad blood i.e. if they continue with massacering the Sunnies, they shouldn't expect mercy, why should they.




Good for you..and yet, after 17 months, with the majority in uprising, all the suport you mentioned, no regime change in site.
Guess time will tell...
How long did the American civil war last? give it time.

Hitman817
15 Jul 12,, 20:23
The Alawites control the coast and sea access. Iran can and does send ships with supplies just like Russia. Lebanon borders Syria with shiites there that can traffic aid if needed. It can be sent through Iraq etc...
The cost regions would be blocked by the Sunnies, the Ships and subs for that, they will get from Turkey or US, the money from the Arabs.


Manipulating numbers that are not there does not prove your point.
You your self have no clue about the nummbers, I gave you a reliable source, yet you keep ignoring it, so there is no point in this dispute, belive what you will. It wont change the reality, which is not in favour of Assad or Russia. ; )

Hitman817
15 Jul 12,, 21:55
The dissolving of the Assadregime seems to have reached even the Alewite core....



Assad receives last warning to stop moving his WMD: Top generals defect (http://www.debka.com/article/22182/Assad-receives-last-warning-to-stop-moving-his-WMD-Top-generals-defect)
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 15, 2012, 10:36 PM (GMT+02:00)

Several high-placed generals bolted Bashar Assad’s inner circle Sunday, July 17, including such key figures as two security services chiefs who were operations commanders of the Alawite Shabiha militia plus the former head of Syria’s chemical and biological administration who took six other generals with him. They all fled to Turkey and defected. A fourth senior general from another security service was assassinated in Aleppo. This is reported exclusively by debkafile’s military sources.

The loss of the generals orchestrating the pro-Assad paramilitary Shabiha’s savage crackdown on the opposition has seriously weakened Assad’s protective circle of trusties and reduced his military and security options.
Also today, the Syrian ruler was given a “last warning” through intelligence channels in the West to leave the warheads and shells loaded with mustard gas, sarin and cyanide where they are. If he dared move them out of the northern and central locations where he deployed them last week, they would be destroyed from the air.
debkafile names the defecting Shabiha commanders as: Gen. Mohamed Tatouh, Deputy chief of Syrian political intelligence, and Gen. Mohamed Kodissia, deputy chief of the “Palestinian” Intelligence agency (a misnomer: it has nothing to do with Palestinians).

The murdered general, Ali Khallouf, was ambushed by rebels in Aleppo.
Maj. Gen. Adnan Nawras Salou, a Sunnite, who headed the chemical warfare authority until 2008, will no doubt have important intelligence to offer the West about the Assad regime’s current activities and plans for his WMD.

debkafile points to three singular features of the latest wave of defections:
1. They all managed to spirit their families out of Syria well before they absconded themselves, an operation that must have required weeks of careful and secret preparation. The failure of Assad’s many-tentacled, clandestine agencies to discover what was up and foil the walkouts, attests to serious lapses in their notorious efficiency.

2. All the defectors served in Damascus at the regime’s nerve center for suppressing the revolt.
3. They all made tracks for Beirut before making their way to Turkey. Neverthetheless, the extensive spy networks run by Iran and Hizballah in the Lebanese capital failed to pick up on the city’s use as a way station for Syrian defectors in flight to Turkey.

4. Despite their active roles in crushing the civil uprising in Syria, those generals clearly hoped to escape the consequences of their actions and becoming liable for prosecution. The Red Cross Committee in Geneva, the first international organization to call the violence in Syria a full-blown civil war, made it clear Sunday, July 15, that international humanitarian law applied henceforth throughout the country and provided a basis for war crimes prosecution, especially if civilians were attacked.

S2
15 Jul 12,, 22:56
This thread doesn't belong here now. What might have once been sheer speculation is now a far too realistic possibility. I propose it be moved in the interest of general housekeeping.

Parihaka
15 Jul 12,, 23:09
This thread doesn't belong here now. What might have once been sheer speculation is now a far too realistic possibility. I propose it be moved in the interest of general housekeeping.

Agree.


Also today, the Syrian ruler was given a “last warning” through intelligence channels in the West to leave the warheads and shells loaded with mustard gas, sarin and cyanide where they are. If he dared move them out of the northern and central locations where he deployed them last week, they would be destroyed from the air.
debkafile names the defecting Shabiha commanders as: Gen. Mohamed Tatouh, Deputy chief of Syrian political intelligence, and Gen. Mohamed Kodissia, deputy chief of the “Palestinian” Intelligence agency (a misnomer: it has nothing to do with Palestinians).

The murdered general, Ali Khallouf, was ambushed by rebels in Aleppo.
Maj. Gen. Adnan Nawras Salou, a Sunnite, who headed the chemical warfare authority until 2008, will no doubt have important intelligence to offer the West about the Assad regime’s current activities and plans for his WMD.
Unless the UN's fantasy world actually coincides with reality and we get a managed transition air strikes against the WMD would have to be a near certainty. Those of Gaddafi's weapons that survived and made their way to other conflicts demonstrate Syria's extensive stockpiles have to be destroyed unless governments are happy for sarin or mustard gas turning up in subway systems or being used to wipe out ethnic groups belonging to the 'wrong' Muslim sect.

Also I'd love to be in on the debrief of Maj. Gen. Adnan Nawras Salou, especially relating to Syria's relationships with the Hussein regime and Iran.

cyppok
15 Jul 12,, 23:32
Shabitha commanders will become the secessionists for the Alawites since they will effectively control their local area patchwork. Enforcement and interaction in between them will take hold and they will vie for power more directly. If Ouster occurs they will become real warlords and a dominance hierarchy will form. Most of them will want to be kings of the realm or at least sovereign thus the fracture will become very real.

Kurds control the top right sector in a similar manner, but in a way more organized.

Like I said Syria fracturing more and more likely. If an Alawite State is proclaimed and defended by remnants of the officer core and some sort of border is enforced. Iran, Russia, China can recognize it and just like Kosovo being allowed self determination in the West , this time it will be from the East.

JAD_333
16 Jul 12,, 05:22
This thread doesn't belong here now. What might have once been sheer speculation is now a far too realistic possibility. I propose it be moved in the interest of general housekeeping.

Where do you want it to go? One problem is that the first part is faithful to the what-if line. I agree it has morphed into a current events thread. We can move a batch of posts.

How do others feel about this?

snapper
18 Jul 12,, 21:50
Worth taking a look at this map http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/special/world/middle_east/12/syria_massacre_map_clickable/img/syria_mass_map976x620.jpg?cachebuster=cb0000002 then consider where the Alawites live (first map in this thread).

cyppok
19 Jul 12,, 09:52
http://www.worldaffairsboard.com/middle-east-north-africa/61342-turkey-kurds-re-orientation-politics.html


If the gov't overplays its' hand and the foreign pressure is actually strong enough the regime could destabilize and you get something similar to a land grab "Iraq 2" scenario except it would be to a degree far worse and more destabilizing longer term.
from last september

I didnt really expect minorities other than Kurds to secede from Syria in that thread I think. Now I do though.
The backhand turn to support Kurds once Turkey turned on Syria was common sense.

Would be nice to have 3-4 new countries in Mid - East, more peaceful perhaps.

cyppok
22 Jul 12,, 05:50
Syria Comment (http://www.joshualandis.com/blog/)
Five Reasons Why There Will Not Be an Alawite State

Saturday, July 21st, 2012 (http://www.joshualandis.com/blog/?p=15475)

Will the Alawites try to establish an Alawite State centered in the Coastal Mountains?

Many opposition figures and journalists insist that the Alawites are planning to fall back to the Alawite Mountains in an attempt to establish a separate state. This is unconvincing. Here are the top five reasons why there will not be an Alawite State.

1. The Alawites have tried to get out of the mountains and into the cities. After the French conquered Syria in 1920, the earliest censuses showed a profound demographic segregation between Sunnis and Alawis. In no town of over 200 people did Alawis and Sunnis live together. The coastal cities of Latakia, Jeble, Tartus and Banyas were Sunni cities with Christian neighborhoods, but no Alawi neighborhoods. Only in Antioch did Alawis live in the city and that city was the capital of a separate autonomous region of Iskandarun, which was ceded to the Turks in 1938. In 1945 only 400 Alawis were registered as inhabitants of Damascus. Ever since the end of the Ottoman era, the Alawis have been streaming out of the mountain region along the coast to live in the cities. The French establishment of an autonomous Alawite state on the coast and their over-recruitment of Alawis into the military sped up this process of urbanization and confessional mixing in the cities of Syria. Assad’s Syria further accelerated the urbanization of the Alawites as they were admitted into universities in large numbers and found jobs in all the ministries and national institutions for the first time.

2. The Assads planned to solve the sectarian problem in Syria by integrating the Alawites into Syria as “Muslims.” They promoted a secular state and tried to suppress any traditions that smacked of a separate “Alawite” identity. No formal Alawi institutions have been established to define Alawi culture, religion or particularism. They did not plan for an Alawi state. On the contrary, the Assads bent over backwards to define Alawis as main-stream Muslims, Bashar married a Sunni Muslim in an attempt at nation-building and to stand as an example of integration. He claimed to promote a “secular” vision of Syria.

3. Assad has done nothing to lay the groundwork for an Alawite state. There is no national infrastructure in the coastal region to sustain a state: no international airport, no electric power plans, no industry of importance, and nothing on which to build a national economy.

4. No country would recognize the Alawite state.

5. Most importantly, an Alawite state is indefensible. Alawite shabbiha and brigades of special forces may fall back to the Alawite Mountains when Damascus is lost. But how long could they last? As soon as Syria’s Sunni militias unite, as presumably they will, they would make hasty work of any remaining Alawite resistance. Who ever owns Damascus and the central state will own the rest of Syria in short order. They will have the money, they will have legitimacy, and they will have international support. Syria could not survive without the coast. More importantly, it would not accept to do without the coast and the port cities of Tartus and Latakia. All the coastal cities remain majority Sunni to this day.

I think he is wrong but he has a very good map on there.
Assads are married into the coastal sunni families, technically the mountains could be used a seperation. Kurds are already de facto seperate according to stories below that one.

Coast has infrastructure its called ports and roads. It would defacto detonate Syria economically and make it landlocked. Christians in compact living within the Alawite areas would probably believe in less attacks from Alawites after seperation than in an islamic Syria.

cyppok
22 Jul 12,, 17:24
Homs and Banyas have refineries about 220k together split about evenly. If they have to give up Homs they can blow it up and cut off gasoline production within Syria everywhere except the coast and border regions like Aleppo.

Strategically electricity is mostly in the north due to dams so that infrastructure would be gone. There is an international airport in Latakia I think so Landis is wrong about infrastructure lacking on the coast.

Overview of Infrastructure in Syria - Oil4All (http://wiki.openoil.net/index.php?title=Overview_of_Infrastructure_in_Syri a)

Tourism, oil terminal transit, refining, port processing of containers, is doable if Alawites seperate.

The most important thing is of course water management and ability to have enough watersheds in the new country for survival and growth. My guess is they would have to push borders either close to Homs and Hama or actually take both cities into the new state due to strategic infrastructure there. (Refinery and river control of the Orontes). Flow of Alawites to the coastal regions increased if you look at Landis's blog.