Fires have been started across the Middle East from Tehran to Tunis, Aleppo to Benghazi to Cairo, and now Gaza and Tel Aviv. The Middle East is up in flames and we probably wont see them put out in our time. No one can predict where the violence will spread, or get it under control. Although the war between Israel and Hamas has the world’s attention, Syria’s drama continues on.
As the public is becoming less interested in Syria’s drama, the British and French are not as shy. The French have recognized the Syrian opposition as Syria’s legitimate government just waiting to see if they can win their civil war, and it seems as though the British will soon follow in their tracks.
This whole dispute may remind you of the events that unfolded in Libya last year. Aside from possibly entering a war, the British and French are just taking the role of an unorthodox variation on the classic government mantra that “something must be done.”
There has been talk of lifting the arms embargo that is currently holding back the Syrian oppositions attempts to overthrow Bashar Al Assad’s regime. There is also talk of creating a no-fly zone in Syrian skies, as well as creating “safe havens” in Syria. The desire to solve other people’s problems is “a bug that, once caught, rarely dies.” Remaining uninvolved in Syria may be the most realistic approach considering that the West wasn’t involved in the beginning, so there is nothing wrong with letting them manage the solving. However, there seems to be some kind of formula to determine when western powers should become involved in a problem that they would not have previously considered being relevant.
As Kofi Annan attempted, and failed, at brokering a solution to the Syrian conflict, Britain would have to think of other ways to resolve the calamity. The chief of the defense staff and Britain’s most senior general, Sir David Richards, thinks that the concern for helping to improve the welfare and happiness of the people will deteriorate, and there may be suggestions to, to some extent, intervene.
Political figures mentioning, “war is unforeseeable,” can also mean that war is probably within view. What can France and Britain achieve without the support of America to intervene? France and Britain have limited pull at the UN unless the US moves; it will be difficult to persuade China and Russia to adjust their objections to foreign intervention in Syria. Even if China and Russia were to change their minds, France and Britain would still need the logistical and military assistance to achieve anything noteworthy.
It almost seems as though France and Britain are jumping to conclusions and expecting the US to back them up. There are limits to what France and Britain can realistically achieve, so if they are to intervene, they need to do so cautiously.
Syria is broken down, but it is not anyone else’s responsibility to fix. What others have done thus far in Syria has not worked, but at least it has not made the situation worse. If western politicians cannot agree on a plan or theme as to how this should be handled, how can they be responsible for making the first move?
A country with such little power trying to tackle a problem much larger then they, and they are just assuming the US will be there to pick up their pieces.
Is it France and Britain’s place to intervene in Syria?
How much can they accomplish without logistical or military support?