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ISIS Bingo: Some issues are even more important than art..

Cameron is confident that he can pass a resolution through the House to begin air strikes on Syria. If this does happen, non-combatant civilian deaths are guaranteed to follow. In the subsequent period of political hand-wringing about the destruction of a hospital, a school, a residential area, monitor the range of platitudes on offer by the government [and perhaps your very own M.P.]. Look out for:

  • Collateral damage
  • A regrettable incident
  • Human shields who were sacrificed by the enemy
  • These casualties are believed to have been complicit in aiding and or protecting the enemy
  • The civilian losses were offset by the benefits accruing from the operation
  • A price worth paying for the security of our own homelands

When your card is complete with this kind of Minbabble, shout “HOUSE [of shame]”.

Seriously, this policy will be a disaster. Only Japan in 1945 has ever capitulated under the pressure of an air-only campaign, without supplementary ground operations – and then only because of particular circumstances which one can hope will never be repeated.

What will be required in Syria are troops on the ground….

..but not an American led force with British forces attached. An Anglo-American military presence would operate under the unbearable burden of moral bankruptcy bequeathed it by  Bush, Cheyney, Blair and Campbell  and the military/industrial nexus they constructed in Iraq. This alone  ensures failure in Syria, where winning the confidence of the local population is paramount. ISIS propaganda has already identified those nations and their NATO allies as Western imperialist crusaders. What will be required this time around to achieve a united front against a menace to all humankind is an active ‘Rainbow Coalition’ under the U.N. banner. Only troops of all ethnic origins, all cultures, all religious [and anti-theist] backgrounds, and all nations, will unite the whole world against ISIS [or whichever label has been applied to this movement at the time you read this].

Until then, brace yourself for more appalling images like this one, captured by Huynh Cong “Nick” Ut on June 8, 1972. “plus ca change”, anyone?


South Vietnamese forces follow terrified children, including 9-year-old Phan Thi Kim Phuc, center, as they run down Route 1 near Trang Bang, Vietnam, after an aerial napalm attack on suspected North Vietnamese troop positions June 8, 1972. A Vietnamese Airforce bomber accidentally dropped its flaming napalm on South Vietnamese troops and civilians. The terrified girl had ripped off her burning clothes while fleeing. From left, are: Phan Thanh Tam, younger brother of Kim Phuc, who lost an eye; Phan Thanh Phuoc, youngest brother of Kim Phuc; Kim Phuc, and Kim Phuc’s cousins Ho Van Bon and Ho Thi Ting. At right, Vietnamese Army photographer Hoang Can Danh, changes film in his camera. The image is among those in the exhibit “The Girl in the Picture,” which runs at George Eastman House in Rochester, N.Y., through June 3, 2001. (AP Photo/Nick Ut)