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John Kerry invokes apocalyptic ‘domino theory’ in call with House Democrats

on 81 Comments
(Photo: Reuters)

(Photo: Reuters)

In a Labor Day conference call with 127 House Democrats, Secretary of State John Kerry invoked an apocalyptic scenario, summoning visions of American power and credibility incinerated in a terrible Middle East-wide conflagration laced with nerve gas and enriched uranium.

An aide to one of the members of Congress who participated in the call told me that Kerry warned that the failure to punish Bashar Al-Assad for using chemical weapons on Syrian civilians could lead to future chemical attacks on Israel and Turkey, emboldening Iran to forge ahead with an alleged nuclear weapons program and perhaps even enter the battlefield in support of Syria. Next, Kerry hammered on the Holocaust, declaring that the US faced a “Munich moment” on Syria.

The member of Congress, a staunch opponent of a US strike on Syria, described Kerry’s pitch as an updated rendition of the Vietnam-era domino theory, which held that if South Vietnam fell, communism would spread across Southeast Asia. “By the end Kerry was practically telling us the Earth was going to fall into the Sun,” the member of Congress commented to aides afterwards.

Since the administration briefing on Sunday focusing on new evidence of Syrian army deployment of sarin gas, even the most skeptical members of Congress have accepted that chemical weapons were used in the attacks around Ghouta on August 21. During Kerry’s conference call, Democratic Rep. Rick Nolan challenged the Secretary to conclusively prove that units of the Syrian army fired the sarin gas shells in Ghouta. A heated change reportedly erupted between the two.

Other congressional skeptics have complained about the exceptionally broad language contained in the use-of-force draft resolution presented to them by the White House. Conceived without any input from Congress, the resolution authorized the President to use the military in virtually any way he saw fit to prevent chemical weapons attacks on Syrians, the US or American allies. And it contained no timeline, geographic limitations, or specific wording on the kind of military action the President could authorize.

By tailoring the resolution as broadly as possible, the White House may have reasoned that Democrats needed a chance to stage a harrumphing protest in front of their constituents, demanding promises of “surgical strikes” that would not require American boots on the ground. Having been ensured adequate political cover and the sense that they acted with caution, the lawmakers could then sign off on a revised resolution, authorizing force in good conscience.

Senate leaders have already begun drafting a new document that constrains Obama to a 60-day timeline for “narrow, limited” missile strikes. The language in the revised resolution might win over enough skeptics to grant the White House the political victory it desperately needs. But it does little to guarantee that American force will not rapidly escalate if the initial round of “limited” strikes is deemed ineffective.

Max Blumenthal

Max Blumenthal is an award-winning journalist and bestselling author.

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81 Responses

  1. amigo on September 3, 2013, 10:22 am

    Tiresome regurgitation of same olde fear mongering.

    Is there really any difference between Obama and Bush 2.

    These people are sick.

  2. W.Jones on September 3, 2013, 10:23 am

    Are you speaking with doubt of the apocalyptic domino theory?

    First Iraq (nonexistent WMDs), then Libya (w/ the “good guys” backing foreign fundamentalists there), then Syria (same thing), with Egypt somewhere in there too (overthrow of Mubarak and/or M.B.).

    Anyway, Kerry has firsthand experience in Vietnam related to the Domino Theory’s importance in foreign policy. They just happen to be falling in their favor.

  3. marc b. on September 3, 2013, 10:29 am

    Kerry. ugh. I could take about two minutes of him on Sunday TV with George Stayontopofthis. somebody, somewhere must have a sense of humor though. Kerry was made up like Quentin Crisp for his appearance.

    the idea of ‘surgical’ or ‘limited’ strikes is preposterous. there will be significant collateral damage; there will be an escalation of the conflict for the regional actors; presumably Obama knows this, so presumably this must be ultimate plan.

    • seafoid on September 3, 2013, 3:49 pm

      I don’t know of any surgeon who uses bunker busters to get at the organs of the patient.

  4. seafoid on September 3, 2013, 10:39 am

    “He said that “the US faced a “Munich moment” on Syria””

    It depends what kind of Munich moment..

    1938 was the year Hitler was appeased in Munich
    1958 was the year Manchester United’s plane crashed in Munich and the team was virtually wiped out

  5. eljay on September 3, 2013, 10:45 am

    >> Next, Kerry hammered on the Holocaust, declaring that the US faced a “Munich moment” on Syria.

    The U.S. has faced countless “Munich moments” with Israel but, rather than halt Zio-supremacist evil in its tracks, the U.S. prefers to fellate Israel’s Hitlerian donkey.

    It’s unfortunate for Assad that he hasn’t got an equally-tempting ass…

  6. BillM on September 3, 2013, 10:46 am

    This is hardly the first time the domino theory has been revived. Bush used in for Iraq. Israel and it’s supporters constantly hint at it regarding Iran, Hezbollah, Hamas, and 12-year olds with rocks.

    I don’t know why politicians struggle so hard to keep it alive. We may have a “Domino Theory Theory”. I.e. if ever the Domino Theory is allowed to fall, then Liberal Interventionism will collapse soon after that, followed by a loss in belief of a Unipolar World, which will leave the theory of American Exceptionalism open to direct attack. The Domino Theory Theory demands that the Domino Theory be defended at all costs.

  7. seafoid on September 3, 2013, 10:59 am

    It’s so interesting that an apocalypse can only be invoked when it’s about Israel and its wars of choice.

    Climate change is going to hit the US real hard and Sandy last year was a foretaste

    but under no circumstances can the real apocalypse coming down the tracks be mentioned. No, it’s just whatever the bots want done by American soldiers.

    • marc b. on September 3, 2013, 11:10 am

      and I hate to sound spineless, seafood, i’m at the point where I can’t even read about what’s going on at fukashima.

  8. kalithea on September 3, 2013, 11:42 am

    Oh, oooooh, this is good!…Did you all listen to Nancy Pelosi’s anecdote regarding her 5-year old grandson challenging the notion of war with Syria with her, and Pelosi trying to make him see her “wisdom” on why the U.S. should attack Syria???

    Because Ms. Pelosi, in all her “wisdom” never heard of OUT OF THE MOUTHS OF BABES… (!)

    Pelosi’s 5-year old grandson has more sense than the entire Congress and the American mass.

  9. Woody Tanaka on September 3, 2013, 11:54 am

    “Next, Kerry hammered on the Holocaust, declaring that the US faced a “Munich moment” on Syria.”

    LMAO. Oh, Kerry’s got the zio disease alright. It’s always 1939 to those people and there’s always a new Hitler. LOL.

    • Krauss on September 3, 2013, 1:55 pm

      I don’t think it’s his genuine beliefs as much as a dog whistle to the Israel lobby.
      He invokes those themes to remind them there will be consequences in their next election. The lobby wants this war and Kerry wants to remind them.

      Furthermore, this kind of apocalyptic language is so easy to predict. You saw the same thing with the whole sequestration debates where the opposite position of whatever the administration took was branded the end of the world.

      You’d think Congressmen and women would stop falling for it.

    • seafoid on September 3, 2013, 2:17 pm

      Hitler must be really happy down in hell to see how may spin offs he has spawned. I wonder do he, Nasser, Arafat and Saddam meet up for lava every so often.

  10. HarryLaw on September 3, 2013, 12:01 pm

    Imagine, we cannot confirm the Russians have launched a nuclear strike on us, but we have high confidence they have, Obama has launched our nuclear force on Russia.

  11. Citizen on September 3, 2013, 12:03 pm

    “Senate leaders have already begun drafting a new document that constrains Obama to a 60-day timeline for “narrow, limited” missile strikes.”

    They really shouldn’t even have to do that as it’s redundant. As I understand it, the War Powers Act allows POTUS 60 days for limited military intervention as he see fit, during which time Congress can end the intervention at the end of the 60 days, if they so choose. To date, Congress has never used their power under said Act.

  12. Justpassingby on September 3, 2013, 12:21 pm

    israel lobby in the works again..
    The war will be overwhelming illegal.

  13. American on September 3, 2013, 12:25 pm

    ”By tailoring the resolution as broadly as possible, the White House may have reasoned that Democrats needed a chance to stage a harrumphing protest in front of their constituents, demanding promises of “surgical strikes” that would not require American boots on the ground. Having been ensured adequate political cover and the sense that they acted with caution, the lawmakers could then sign off on a revised resolution, authorizing force in good conscience.”

    Thats been my bet.
    It’s just a cya for voting to strike Syria.
    US public opinion is the last thing that has any affect on congress.
    They are so convinced the public is stupid and trapped by the two parties that they are confident they can just feed us more shit and spin when re election time rolls around.

  14. rws450 on September 3, 2013, 12:35 pm

    When Kerry was being considered for Secy of State, Stephen Zunes documented Kerry’s record for the past decade and why he will be terrible for anyone wanting real change. The words are turning out to be prophetic:

  15. Kathleen on September 3, 2013, 1:15 pm

    What happened to the John Kerry who testified to congress decades ago about U.S. aggression and unnecessary and illegal wars?

    ” a new document that constrains the President” How can anyone forget the 2002 Iraq war resolution that Kerry and Clinton voted for?

    So most people get that chemical weapons were used and people including children died horrible deaths. But who used them? Seems important

    • Chu on September 3, 2013, 1:37 pm

      the simple answer is – he was before it, before he was against it. I think that Kerry believes that if we engage Syria, by dropping some mortars from afar, it will serve as a warning to protect our dear friend in the mid-east.

      I mean, we have such an excellent reputation to uphold in the middle east, we wouldn’t want to disappoint them by not overspending and overstepping our bounds to prove we are the world’s superpower and global fist of democracy.

      It’s almost as through Congress and its pawns are acting out the Clean Break strategy. The script has been written, it just a matter of time, when the entire show will end.

      • Kathleen on September 3, 2013, 6:39 pm

        “the script has been written” PNAC and Clean Bloody Break has been rolling out for over 12 years now.

  16. eljay on September 3, 2013, 1:40 pm

    >> … Kerry warned that the failure to punish Bashar Al-Assad for using chemical weapons on Syrian civilians could lead to future chemical attacks on Israel and Turkey, emboldening Iran to forge ahead with an alleged nuclear weapons program and perhaps even enter the battlefield in support of Syria.

    Where is Kerry’s concern that a failure to punish Israel for its 60+ years of Jewish terrorism, ethnic cleansing, land theft, occupation, colonization, destruction, torture, murder and use of chemical weapons will embolden it to continue with its Zio-supremacist plan?

    Where is his concern that decades of ruinous and even murderous American meddling in the affairs of nations around the globe will embolden it to continue to pursue its hegemonic ambitions?

  17. gingershot on September 3, 2013, 2:13 pm

    Israel has only TWO apocalyptic dominoes in mind – knocking over Syria to knock over Iran

    Then comes the 1000 yr Iran-American clash of civilizations (and another 1000 yrs of American aid to Israel) in a world in which Apartheid Israel can flourish forever

    Everybody remember last year when Netanyahu and his Israeli Lobby were desperately pushing an attack on Iran – most probably by launching an attack which neatly and immediately mousetrapped the US into the war?

    Anybody wondering whether that was just a bad dream or that they were possibly mistaken that we were about a 1/2 inch from that happening?

    Times of Israel now says that was exactly what was happened last Sept – that Bibi was absolutely ready to attack in what would immediately entrap the US into the war

    An Israeli plan to attack Iran in 2012 was cancelled due to US objections, a former head of Israel’s National Security Council confirmed Tuesday. Remember General Dempsey’s ‘we will not be complicit in an Israeli attack on Iran’ statement?

    “According to the report, Eiland discussed the Israeli plan and Washington’s objections during a closed conference two weeks ago, saying that Netanyahu had originally intended to order a strike on Iran sometime between September and October of 2012, at the height of the US presidential campaign and around the same time as Netanyahu’s famous speech at the United Nations”

    We also know that Cheney was trying to attack Iran in 2007/2008 because George Bush told us so, and that they were only stopped by the 2007 NIE on Iran and possibly Admiral Fallon’s conscientious resignation as well. According to reports, Israel’s security chiefs vetoed a plan by Netanyahu and then-defense minister Ehud Barak to attack Iran in late 2010.

    An attack on Syria is the beginning of the end – this is the building of the ‘Third Israeli Temple’ of Culture Clash of America against Islam forever, with Israel the beneficiary

    I really wonder if Netanyahu just pulled the carpet out from under Obama and told him – either YOU attack Syria or WE attack Iran, or something to that effect – and this attack is really just a COVER because an Israeli attack would be WORSE, and involve the US anyway (just like it would have last Sept)

    Looks like Netanyahu WON – this is payback for being humiliated last Sept

  18. bilal a on September 3, 2013, 2:22 pm

    Gawker notes an interesting re-writing of history at the paper of record on the Israeli Lobby’s Push ofr War in Congress, even prior to the alleged CW Assad attack:

  19. American on September 3, 2013, 2:52 pm

    At wits end….and believing the congress will vote for Obama’s strike….I dont know what to hope for.
    Should I hope that Syria and Hezbollah do hit back and we have some ME showdown against the US.
    Or should I hope they dont …..and everything just keeps creeping along toward what I believe will be some kind of eventual showdown in the future anyway.
    Should I hope it’s now or later?

  20. Citizen on September 3, 2013, 3:05 pm

    Kerry’s on CSPAN now, with his hyperbolic pitch to attack Syria. It’s about 3PM, today.

    In addition to the Syria Accountability Act, “we have deep interests there… fact is, if nothing changes, that area can become an area of ungoverned space, and allies like Jordan or Israel will be in danger. Syria ‘s important because, if you are a despot in the region, what is the message, if Assad is granted impunity? We can’t give Hezbollah, N Korea a given a permission slip due to our silence. Israel anxiously awaits our assurance in protetection of its own children, not just Syria’s. Never means never. This is a vote for accountability, for norms enforced. As Jackson said at Nuremberg.”

    • Citizen on September 3, 2013, 3:16 pm

      Kerry, more: ” Some fear for a retaliation, morphing into a larger conflict. The world has banned the weapon Assad has used. This is not the time for armchair isolationism. We must stand up for our values and responsibility.”

      Code Pink gets up and protests.
      Kerry says he once had feeling like that; we can all respect those who have a different point of view?”

      • James Canning on September 3, 2013, 6:41 pm

        @Citizen – – Do we recall what Kerry said when Israel was raining white phosphorus on civilians?

  21. James Canning on September 3, 2013, 3:13 pm

    Good grief. The US emphatically does not face a “Munich moment”! Absurd.

  22. biorabbi on September 3, 2013, 3:14 pm

    Is this Kerry the same Kerry who wined and dined with President Assad along with Pelosi?

    • seafoid on September 3, 2013, 4:16 pm

      Syria tortured on demand for the US but Israel now has a new boyfriend.

    • marc b. on September 3, 2013, 4:45 pm

      yes, the same one. he was prattling on about diplomacy with Syria back in 2011 I believe, and the need to engage assad for the benefit of the stability of the region.

    • RoHa on September 3, 2013, 9:47 pm

      But not the same Assad who was an American ally in the 1990 Iraq war.

      (See what being an ally of the US gets you?)

  23. Citizen on September 3, 2013, 3:20 pm

    Now, Hagel is talking. Says Hezbollah getting chemical weapons is a danger. We need to protect Israel, Jordan, Lebanaon….”

  24. Citizen on September 3, 2013, 3:24 pm

    Hagel: A refusal to act would undermine USA’s credibility. We must protect our national interest.

  25. bintbiba on September 3, 2013, 3:29 pm

    watching Chuck Hagel speaking in Washington…. He has such a sheepish, pathetic look … I almost feel sorry for him spewing the lies he has to. What a tragedy America is committing : towards America as well as towards the world. All terribly sad!

  26. Citizen on September 3, 2013, 3:31 pm

    Kerry: I don’t want to take off the table the option of boots on the ground if that is needed. I am confident that can be worked out if it comes to that. That’s a paraphrase; his actual wording is more weasely, but that is the gist of it.

    • Citizen on September 3, 2013, 3:38 pm

      Hagel: ” It was June of this year that POTUS decided we need to intervene in Syria with force.”

      • Citizen on September 3, 2013, 3:41 pm

        ” I can’t answer what we are seeking.

      • Citizen on September 3, 2013, 3:43 pm

        Kerry: “Let me clarify; there will be no boots on the grounds.”

      • Woody Tanaka on September 3, 2013, 5:22 pm

        “Kerry: ‘Let me clarify; there will be no boots on the grounds.'”

        Except, no doubt, those worn by the innocent civilians who will no doubt be killed in this assault in order to punish someone for something we ‘re not he actually did…

  27. DICKERSON3870 on September 3, 2013, 3:34 pm

    RE: “John Kerry invokes apocalyptic ‘domino theory’ in call with House Democrats”

    MY COMMENT: The U.S. is one very sick country! ! !

    SEE: “U.S. intervention in Syria: War for virtue”, By Henry Allen,, 9/01/13

    [EXCERPTS] . . . The good war, the virtuous war. We believe in it. We have to believe in it or we wouldn’t be Americans.
    As John Updike wrote: “America is beyond power, it acts as in a dream, as a face of God. Wherever America is, there is freedom, and wherever America is not, madness rules with chains, darkness strangles millions. Beneath her patient bombers, paradise is possible.”

    The United States doesn’t fight for land, resources, hatred, revenge, tribute, religious conversion — the usual stuff. Along with the occasional barrel of oil, we fight for virtue.
    Never mind that it doesn’t work out — the Gulf of Tonkin lies, Agent Orange,waterboarding, nonexistent weapons of mass destruction, the pointless horrors of Abu Ghraib, a fighter plane wiping out an Afghan wedding party, our explanation of civilian deaths as an abstraction: “collateral damage.”
    Just so. We talk about our warmaking as if it were a therapeutic science — surgical strikes, precision bombing, graduated responses, a homeopathic treatment that uses war to cure us of war. . . We send out our patient bombers in the manner of piling on blankets to break a child’s fever. We launch our missiles and say: “We’re doing it for your own good.”
    The problem here is that humankind doesn’t hate war, it loves war. . .
    . . . What better explains all of recorded history with its atrocity, conquest, pillage and extermination? Our love of war is the problem. War is an addiction, maybe a disease, the chronic autoimmune disease of humanity. It erupts, it subsides, but it’s always there, waiting to cripple and kill us. The best we can do is hope to keep it in remission.
    And yet Americans still believe in the idea of the good and virtuous war. It scratches our Calvinist itch; it proves our election to blessedness.
    Thus God is on our side. Strangely enough, though, we keep losing. . .


  28. Sin Nombre on September 3, 2013, 4:43 pm

    Ah it doesn’t get any richer than this:

    Young John Kerry, needing—nay, craving attention, carefully becoming the “winter” soldier, morally caviling against a war that, while stupid, at least was engaged in and pursued out of a valid, uncorrupted concern; to wit, the American interest.

    And now we have old John Kerry, mouthing word for word the sorts of memes he so heaped disdain on in the Vietnam situation so as to take us into a war out of a totally invalid, totally corrupted concern; to wit, *other* countries’ interests.

    Sorta answers the song’s question about what war is good for at least for John Kerry: His career! And at least with Nixon and Kissinger they appeared sincere.

  29. ritzl on September 3, 2013, 4:46 pm

    It’s a reverse domino theory. In which we topple regional governments one after the other.

    Getting so tired of this say anything nonsense by people that know better. I suspect a lot of people are. It makes absolutely zero sense. Less than zero if you figure that it can be spotted by normal people a mile away (or internationally) as nothing other than habitual, self-serving blather.

    • gingershot on September 3, 2013, 5:34 pm

      ‘The Reverse Domino Theory’ – otherwise known as the ‘Clean Break
      Strategy for Securing the Realm’ – the Neocon/Israeli compact for the New Middle East

  30. Mondowise on September 3, 2013, 5:01 pm

    “…the resolution authorized the President to use the military in virtually any way he saw fit to prevent chemical weapons attacks on Syrians, the US or American allies.”

    AND ever-mindful that this resolution was tailored “as broadly as possible” (meaning all inclusive, no possibility of being broader), the above quote is nothing short of a blatant admission that the Obomba Admin has zero care in the world for other innocent civilians that aren’t Syrian or in countries considered “American allies”. The implications of this are too far-reaching for this comment section, but surely, we all get the drift…and we see it playing out as facts on the ground all over the world. simply consider Palestine or all of Africa as a small sample of numerous examples. nope, no genuine Obomba empathy, support or care for any of them, rather they get violated and annihilated.

  31. HarryLaw on September 3, 2013, 5:22 pm

    The liar in chief is changing his rhetoric to get the Republicans onside “Obama hints at larger strategy to topple Assad in effort to win over Republicans
    President suggests strikes could lead to longer-term mission as tough White House rhetoric begins to win over Republicans”

  32. DICKERSON3870 on September 3, 2013, 5:25 pm

    RE: “Since the administration briefing on Sunday focusing on new evidence of Syrian army deployment of sarin gas, even the most skeptical members of Congress have accepted that chemical weapons were used in the attacks around Ghouta on August 21.” ~ Blumenthal

    “Mounting evidence raises questions about Syrian chemical weapon attack”, By Yossef Bodansky, Special to, 8/28/13

    [EXCERPTS]There is a growing volume of new evidence from numerous sources in the Middle East — mostly affiliated with the Syrian opposition and its sponsors and supporters — which makes a very strong case, based on solid circumstantial evidence, that the Aug. 21 chemical strike in the Damascus suburbs was indeed a premeditated provocation by the Syrian opposition. . .
    . . .On Aug. 13-14, Western-sponsored opposition forces in Turkey started advance preparations for a major and irregular military surge. Initial meetings between senior opposition military commanders and representatives of Qatari, Turkish, and U.S. Intelligence [“Mukhabarat Amriki”] took place at the converted Turkish military garrison in Antakya, Hatay Province, used as the command center and headquarters of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) and their foreign sponsors. Very senior opposition commanders who had arrived from Istanbul briefed the regional commanders of an imminent escalation in the fighting due to “a war-changing development” which would, in turn, lead to a U.S.-led bombing of Syria. . .
    . . . The Qatari and Turkish intelligence officials assured the Syrian regional commanders that they would be provided with plenty of weapons for the coming offensive.
    Indeed, unprecedented weapons distribution started in all opposition camps in Hatay Province on Aug. 21-23. . .
    . . . Several senior officials from both the Syrian opposition and sponsoring Arab states stressed that these weapon deliveries were specifically in anticipation for exploiting the impact of imminent bombing of Syria by the U.S. and the Western allies. The latest strategy formulation and coordination meetings took place on Aug. 26. The political coordination meeting took place in Istanbul and was attended by U.S. Amb. Robert Ford.
    More important were the military and operational coordination meetings at the Antakya garrison. Senior Turkish, Qatari, and U.S. Intelligence officials attended in addition to the Syrian senior (opposition) commanders. The Syrians were informed that bombing would start in a few days. . . Several participants — both Syrian and Arab — stressed that the assurances of forthcoming bombing were most explicit even as formally Obama is still undecided.
    The descriptions of these meetings raise the question of the extent of foreknowledge of U.S. intelligence, and therefore, the Obama White House. All the sources consulted — both Syrian and Arab — stressed that officials of the “Mukhabarat Amriki” actively participated in the meetings and briefings in Turkey. Therefore, at the very least, they should have known that the opposition leaders were anticipating “a war-changing development”: that is, a dramatic event which would provoke a U.S.-led military intervention.
    The mere fact that weapon storage sites under the tight supervision of U.S. intelligence were opened up and about a thousand tons of high-quality weapons were distributed to the opposition indicates that U.S. intelligence anticipated such a provocation and the opportunity for the Syrian opposition to exploit the impact of the ensuing U.S. and allied bombing. Hence, even if the Obama White House did not know in advance of the chemical provocation, they should have concluded, or at the very least suspected, that the chemical attack was most likely the “war-changing development” anticipated by the opposition leaders as provocation of U.S.-led bombing. . .


    • DICKERSON3870 on September 3, 2013, 5:42 pm

      ● FROM Rowan Berkeley @

      Yossef Bodansky is a USraeli who served as Director of the Congressional Task Force on Terrorism and Unconventional Warfare of the US House of Representatives from 1988 to 2004. He is well-known as one of the few hard-core zionist operatives in the USraeli intelligence world who insists that AQ and the Iranians are in cahoots. Unlike the Israeli elite in general, Bodansky cannot bear the idea of an AQ-ruled Middle East. So he is breaking ranks here.

      SOURCE –

      ● FROM WIKIPEDIA [Yossef Bodansky]:

      (EXCERPT) Yossef Bodansky (born in Israel) is an Israeli-American political scientist who served as Director of the Congressional Task Force on Terrorism and Unconventional Warfare of the US House of Representatives from 1988 to 2004. He is also Director of Research of the International Strategic Studies Association and has been a visiting scholar at Johns Hopkins University’s Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). In the 1980s, he served as a senior consultant for theDepartment of Defense and the Department of State.

      He is also a senior editor for the Defense and Foreign Affairs group of publications and a contributor to the International Military and Defense Encyclopedia and is on the Advisory Council of The Intelligence Summit. Bodansky’s numerous articles have been published in Global Affairs, Jane’s Defense Weekly, Defense and Foreign Affairs: Strategic Policy and other periodicals.

      SOURCE –

      • American on September 3, 2013, 10:06 pm

        @ Dickerson

        Now that is explosive. Bodansky is no kook and he’s been generally pro Israel (but not hard line ) so I cant figure any agenda he might have in saying this and trying to stop a strike on Syria.

  33. ritzl on September 3, 2013, 6:46 pm

    Maybe OT, but ya gotta love McClatchy. They’re doing what almost they alone did among major news orgs wrt Iraq, and banging holes in the “evidence” on Syria.

    WASHINGTON — The Obama administration’s public case for attacking Syria is riddled with inconsistencies and hinges mainly on circumstantial evidence, undermining U.S. efforts this week to build support at home and abroad for a punitive strike against Bashar Assad’s regime.

    Read more here:

  34. Citizen on September 3, 2013, 8:00 pm

    Kerry, on CSPAN @ 7:56PM today: “Israel for certain will be less secure if we don’t attack Syria.” This in response to Rand Paul, asking, ” Will Israel be more or less secure if USA don’t strike?”

    Kerry: ” If we don’t hold Assad responsible, it’s a guarantee Assad will do it again. POUTS is asking us to degrade the tyrant’s gassing people again. The POTUS is not asking us to go to war, he’s not asking us to declare war or asking us to send boots on the ground.”

  35. Citizen on September 3, 2013, 8:07 pm

    ON CSPAN AT 8:05PM, OBAMA says we only want to degrade Assad’s capabilities. No boots on the ground. He looks forward to an excellent debate. We need to send a clear message to Assad.

  36. Citizen on September 3, 2013, 8:14 pm

    Obama heads off for the G20 Conference.
    Boener is saying the use of chemical weapons and only the USA is capable of telling the world, use of chemical weapons is not OK. He supports Obama’s action, as all need to know USA will stand up when necessary. Pelosi follows, telling us WMD is not OK. By killing 1400, Assad crossed the line with his use of chemical weapons, or else we cannot say, “Never again!” Pelosi says the American people need to hear more on the evidence of Assad using WMD on his own people, on Syrian children. People need to hear the full value of intelligence on this disaster. And too, the scenario if Assad gets away with what he did. We need to send a message to Assad, and then there’s work to be done. Were’s waiting for Putin, the slowest ship in the (righteous) convoy, and this is not tolerable.

    • Walid on September 4, 2013, 2:43 am

      Second protester being thrown out of the hearing was able to yell something about white phosphorus. Strange how Kerry keeps going back in saying that this time it was unlike the Iraq WMD story. The senators yesterday all began by saying they favoured the bombing but that they wanted to set some limitations on it. With the renewable 30-day periods, these targetted bombings can go on for the next 5 years.

  37. RoHa on September 3, 2013, 8:21 pm

    In Australia the Domino Theory was intensified into Downward Thrust.
    Vietnam, Cambodia,Thailand, Laos, and Malaya form a funnel shape pointed right at Australia, with only Indonesia in between. Maps showed China and North Vietnam full of Reds. If we didn’t stop them in Vietnam, they would pour down through the funnel and fill Australia.

    Quite a few of us thought the best solution would be to turn the map upside down so that they would all drain back into China.

  38. Citizen on September 3, 2013, 8:24 pm

    On CSPAN now: Senator Diane Feinstein: Praises the Senate meeting on authorizing strike on Syria. Rep Dutch Ruppersberger, Intelligence Commitee Ranking Member, adds that we cannot allow use of chemical weapons without accountability. We must do something, or it sends message such weapons usage will go on, followed by usage of WMD. Intent is not to have another Iraq or Afghaistan. We need to hurt Assad now to hold him accountable.

    Rep Eliot Engel (D, NY): The enemy, Iran & Hezbollah is watching how we respond. America stands for what is right since WW1. We need to strike Syria, and more to obtain a post-Assad Syria. Obama wants to tell Assad he can’t stay where he is.

  39. Citizen on September 3, 2013, 8:27 pm

    More Engel: “WE need to convince the American people this morally right to do, and them look at the kids foaming at the mouth, dying from Assad’s chemical attacks. Our enemies are Hezbollah, Iran. But no boots on the ground.

  40. Citizen on September 3, 2013, 8:30 pm

    One proposal would only allow a very extremely limited strike. Code Pink interrupted: No more war on Syria.

  41. Citizen on September 3, 2013, 8:38 pm

    Sen Robert Menendez, D NJ, Foreign Relaitions Committee Chairmen, says he was against war on Iraq, but he wants to strike Syria to send a message to Assad against his war crimes. He’s cool with Kerry’s assessment of the morality, ethics, and evidence offered by Kerry. “We on the commitee will look more closely tomorrow at the evidence offered up by Kerry.

    • Citizen on September 3, 2013, 8:54 pm

      Senator Bob Corker, Foreign Relations Committee Ranking Member, says we know Assad used chemical weapons on his people, so we need to look out for the credibility of the American people.

      Kerry: Obama’s vision on Syria: The world wants to know if we will rise to the occasion. Corker wants to ask why does Syria matter, what’s at stake? The Syrian regime is a family matter that willfully uses chemical warfare to stay in power. Both Kerry and Hagel our deeply aware of the specious Iraq War as the history…

  42. Citizen on September 3, 2013, 8:58 pm

    Pretty amazing how Kerry changes his tune, depending on the whims of his boss. This guy is very dangerous; if there was ever a used car salesman, it’s Kerry.

    He’s now calling for “Assad must go.” He says biggest concern is to protect Israel, Jordan. We also let Syria off, we let Iran off, plus Hezbollah, and N Korea get the same permission slip. Jackson at Nurembrerg: We cannot be silent. POTUS is not asking us to go to war. no boots on the ground, only to deter Assad’s use of chemical weapons.

  43. joer on September 3, 2013, 10:05 pm

    First of all, if we attack, probably ten times the ammount of people will end up dying than if stay out. And if our attack was successfull, we would just install our own dictator and the Syrian people will be where they were when this whole uprising started.

    Second of all-and I’m surprised it hasn’t been mentioned more often-can we afford another war? I mean, can the country literally survive one? Twelve years of war, and a half century of global conquest has really depleted this country financially and morally. Even though lately the wars have been kept largely out of sight, the effects on the country cannot be ignored-from the huge cost, the dead and wounded soldiers, the corruption to the political process in order to keep the wars and hostile involvement in other countries going-as well as the corruption of the media to the economic and social problems that are being ignored because of the focu$ of the government on world domination. Another quagmire could mean big trouble for us.

    And it will only be a short involvement if they don’t respond.

  44. Qualtrough on September 3, 2013, 10:27 pm

    Ostensibly this is all about saving the people of Syria, and yet we need only look at Iraq, Afghanistan, and Libya to see with crystal clarity what is in store for them.

  45. piotr on September 3, 2013, 11:20 pm

    USA and credibility….

    Does this girl have any virginity left to loose?

    Right now, it is a bit curious that the French found roughly 4 times less victims than our intelligence. It seems a classic example of intelligence conclusions by reverse engineering. It would be a bit awkward to view 300 victims of Assad as “intolerable” while 1000 victims in Egypt are treated to “both sides should show more restraint”. So the number of victims had to be larger than in Egypt.

    This begs the question if our intelligence agencies can concoct a report that fits pre-ordained conclusions, whatever the actual facts are? Frankly, as English is my second language, I am bit hazy of it is “can”, or “may”, or “might”, or “could” or “should”.

  46. RoHa on September 3, 2013, 11:58 pm

    ” the French found roughly 4 times less victims than our intelligence.”

    4 times fewer. “Victims” is countable.

    “This begs the question if our intelligence agencies can concoct a report that fits pre-ordained conclusions, whatever the actual facts are?”

    “I am bit hazy of it is “can”, or “may”, or “might”, or “could” or “should”.”

    All of the above, if historical precedent counts for anything.

  47. Bandolero on September 4, 2013, 1:05 am

    I wondered that Mr. Krupin was mentioned here, yet:

    Was Kerry’s ‘Munich moment’ on Syria created by a protégé of the Israel lobby?

    Perhaps someday we will discover too that Kerry’s “Munich moment” was scripted by another partisan of the supposedly besieged “Jewish state” with hegemonic pretensions. The Secretary of State’s chief speechwriter, Stephen Krupin, is, after all, a former intern of the Solomon Project, a pro-Israel think tank affiliated with the National Jewish Democratic Council (NJDC). While working on a 2004 book entitled “Jews in American Politics,” Krupin’s director of research was Ira N. Forman. Forman, the NJDC’s longtime executive director, previously worked as legislative liaison and political director of AIPAC, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee.


  48. Citizen on September 4, 2013, 6:30 am

    Kerry has now stated he cannot rule out boots on the ground in Syria. From 2 days of tomahawk missiles to a full war on Assad regime including boots on the ground in just a couple of days trying to sell Obama’s latest war. Chomsky has now weighed in, saying with or without Congress’s approval, a US-led strike on Syria without UN approval is a war crime:

  49. Bandolero on September 4, 2013, 9:22 am

    Here is another piece of information proving the dishonesty of John Kerry’s rush to war against Syria:

    By Matthew Russell Lee

    UNITED NATIONS, September 3 — On Syria in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Tuesday, US Secretary of State John Kerry was asked why not wait for the UN information on chemical weapons?

    Kerry first replied, “what information?” Then he explained that the UN won’t report, he understands, for “three weeks,” and complained that the UN has no mandate to determine WHO used chemical weapons, only that there were used.

    Earlier today Inner City Press published a copy of Syria’s August 31 letter to the UN, and will now quote from it:

    “Mr. Kerry has stated that the investigative team is not responsible for identifying the party that used chemical weapons and that its task is solely to determine whether such weapons were used. The purpose of that statement is to justify the American administration’s circumvention of the Security Council. It should be recalled that, in its letter to the Secretary-General of 20 March 2013, the Syrian Government officially requested that the investigation should determine who it was that used chemical weapons in Khan Asal. That request, however, was rejected by at the time by the delegations of the United States of America, Britain and France.”

    Kerry wasn’t asked about that in the Senate.


  50. Theo on September 4, 2013, 9:32 am

    After listenning nearly four hours long to that staged theater, all I could do is to shake my head. Are those naive senators, who hardly could voice an intelligent question and know very little of world affairs, the top representatives of this nation? Each repeated about the same the previous speaker said, with slight variations.
    Only Senator Paul had the guts to voice a few critical statements and questions, however he acted like a spoiled child, so he ruined his stance. To my joy he really gave a hard time to John Kerry, it looked like he will explode in any moment.

    As far as Kerry goes, he is just a warmonger and must have taken lessions from videos of Göbbels! All three government witnesses said the same, if we don´t kill a few thousand syrians right now, in the future we will have to face the N. Korean and Iranian nuclear bombs.
    Pure and inadulterated warmongering, scarring people into committing a crime.

    Following questions should have been asked:

    First of all, what has N. Korea to do with this case, they must be 6,000 miles away from the ME?!
    How will this attack guarantee that Assad will not use chemical agents in the future, if he was the one who did it this time? According to several sources he has several thousand tonnes of such agents and we just cannot destroy all of it with “a very limited bombing, no boots on the ground”?
    What happens if we hit a depot with tonnes of such agents, will it release it and consequently kill thousands, if not tens of thousands of innocent civilians?
    The USA is not in danger, nor are our “friends” in the ME, if Assad uses such agents on his own people, so why this outcry for revenge?
    (This may change if we attack Syria, Assad may just say after me nothing comes and hits Israel, Turkey and Jordan with a massive rocker barrage, full with chemical and biological agents).

    If we tomahawk Syria, they may just do the same with our ships at see, the airbase in Turkey and the huge naval base in Bahrain, just to name a few possible targets. If Iran gets involved, they also can hit Bahrain, and our bases in Iraq and Afghanistan, the oil production in Saudia Arabia, Qatar, and Quwait, turning this civil war into a major international war.
    With the oil supplies gone, China, India and Pakistan may just turn against our “group of willing” and say hallo to WWIII.

    In any case, my car is filled up to the nose in case our congress has less guts than our british friends had and approve a slaughter of few thousand syrian civilians and soldiers. We all know Assad and his family and friends will survive, so we punish only the ones who have nothing to do with this madness.

  51. Bandolero on September 4, 2013, 11:59 am

    Putin calls Kerry a liar:

    Putin later leveled criticism at US Secretary of State John Kerry as he spoke to human rights activists on Wednesday, saying Kerry “lied” by claiming there was no Al-Qaeda militants fighting in Syria and that the military strike against President Assad will not boost the terrorist network’s presence in the region.

    “They lie, plainly. I watched the Congressional debate. A congressman asked Mr. Kerry: “Is there any Al-Qaeda [in Syria]? There are reports they have been growing stronger.” He [Kerry] replied: “No. I say with all responsibility: there is no [Al-Qaeda] there,” Putin explained.

    The Russian President then said the Al-Nusra Front terrorist organization, which pledged allegiance to Al-Qaeda, has been at the forefront of the rebel groups fighting Assad’s forces, and that the US is well aware of that.

    “Well, he [Kerry] lies. And he knows that he lies. This is sad,” Putin remarked.


  52. cogit8 on September 4, 2013, 12:27 pm

    I have not seen John Kerry (a walking/talking Muppet head) mention the moral obscenity of over 1400 people killed (including hundreds of children) in a formal military assault on the unarmed civilians of Gaza in 2008/2009. Neither does he mention Israel’s use of white phosphorous, cluster bombs, and U.S. use of depleted uranium and murder of civilians by drones. Hypocrite!

    Poison gas is no different at killing people than the billions $$$ of weapons that all major countries sell to the world, but of course it has significant meaning to a specific sub-set of psycho-damaged war-mongers. And every few years we need to assuage these people’s past hurts by having a nice little “limited action” bloodletting of those “bad guys”, as if this were an old B&W western movie with the U.S. cavalry riding in to save the day.

    I hope to never see the day when the rest of humanity rises up and says “enough of this American gangster movie”.

  53. seafoid on September 4, 2013, 2:09 pm

    Kerry invokes apocalypse


    Kerry provokes it ?

  54. NickJOCW on September 4, 2013, 4:28 pm

    I am told only 10% of Syrians actually favour foreign intervention, the rest mostly want all outsiders out of their country and have their army rid them of terrorists and let them resolve their constitutional problems themselves.

    Opinion polls suggest 70% of Americans are against intervention, as are 80% of Germans, 76% of English and 69% of French.

    None of this, of course, counts for anything.

    Kerry is duplicitous. Why can’t he just say, Look we want to be top dog in the ME, Assad is in our way so we are going to get rid of him at any cost. End of discussion.

  55. seafoid on September 4, 2013, 5:34 pm

    “World leaders will gather in St Petersburg on Thursday for what has transformed into an international showdown with Vladimir Putin threatening to send a missile shield to Syria if the US launches an attack without the authority of the United Nations.
    Putin, in an interview publishedon Wednesday, said it was too early to talk about what Russia would do if the US attacked Syria but added: “We have our ideas about what we will do and how we will do it in case the situation develops toward the use of force or otherwise. We have our plans.”

    He then said Russia might restart Syria’s suspended S-300 air defence missile contract. Describing the weapon as “very efficient”, he said: “If we see that steps are taken that violate the existing international norms, we shall think how we should act in the future, in particular regarding supplies of such sensitive weapons to certain regions of the world.”

    The statement could also be a veiled threat to revive a contract for the delivery of the S-300s to Iran, which Russia cancelled a few years ago under strong US and Israeli pressure.”

    The G20 summit, hosted by Putin, had been expected to focus on the world economy and growth, but will now be dominated by the Middle East crisis, even if the formal agenda remains fixed on the slowdown of growth in emerging markets.

    Barack Obama, speaking during a stopover in Sweden before the summit, denied his political credibility was at stake but admitted relations with Russia had hit a wall.

    • James Canning on September 4, 2013, 6:26 pm

      Obama in my view has blundered by not backing Russian proposals for a Syrian peace conference with Iran attending.

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