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Realpolitik blurs US red line on Syria

By       Message Pepe Escobar     Permalink
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The key Syria question is how Russia and China see Obama's red line.

Here's the Russian response.[3] Its bottom line is that the US should respect the "norms of international law"; no to "democracy by bombs"; and only the UN Security Council has the power to authorize an attack on Syria. Once again; Russia and China, three times already, have said no to war.

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Here's the Chinese response. Not via diplomacy, as in Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, but as a Xinhua editorial, which in the Chinese context means Beijing's official version. The headline says it all; "Obama's 'red line' warnings aimed to seek new pretext for Syria intervention."

Arguably this is the money quote -- a summary of US foreign policy according to Beijing; "It is not difficult to find that, under the disguise of humanitarianism, the United States has always tried to smash governments it considers as threats to its so-called national interests and relentlessly replace them with those that are Washington-friendly."

All the key players here -- the US, Russia and China -- know Damascus won't commit the folly of using (or "moving") chemical weapons. So no wonder Moscow and Beijing are extremely suspicious this "red line" gambit may be yet another Obama deception maneuver, as in "leading from behind" in Libya (this is nonsense; in fact the attack on Libya started with Africom and then was transferred to NATO).

As Asia Times Online has been reporting for over a year, once again the big picture is clear; this is a titanic battle between NATO-GCC and BRICS members Russia and China. At stake is nothing less than the rule of international law, which has been steadily going down the drain since at least Agent Orange being sprayed all over Vietnam, through Dubya's invasion of Iraq in 2003, and with the Libyan "humanitarian bombing" reaching an abysmal low. Not to mention Israel daily threatening to bomb Iran -- as if this was a trip to a kosher deli.

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Well, one can always dream of the day a multipolar world will give a pink slip to those issuers of red lines.

1. Obama Threatens Force Against Syria, New York Times, August 20, 2012
2. http://www.moonofalabama.org/2012/08/obama-to-assad-do-whatever-you-need-to-do.html, Moon of Alabama, August 21, 2012.
3. Russia warns West on Syria after Obama threats, Reuters, August 21, 2012.
4. Obama's "red line" warnings merely aimed to seek new pretext for Syria intervention, August 22, 2012.

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Pepe Escobar is an independent geopolitical analyst. He writes for RT, Sputnik and TomDispatch, and is a frequent contributor to websites and radio and TV shows ranging from the US to East Asia. He is the former roving correspondent for Asia (more...)

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