Mid-East war fears after Iranian base blasts, Syria's Arab League suspension
The potential for a regional flare-up shot up Friday and Saturday, Nov-11-12, with the blasts at two Iranian arms bases which killed at least 32 Revolutionary Guards men including Iran's top missile expert, and the Arab League Foreign Ministers' decision to suspend Syria's membership over Bashar Assad's brutal military crackdown on civilians.
Hours after the base explosions in Iran, the Arab League decided to suspend the membership of its ally Syria and impose political and economic sanctions on the Assad regime. Members were advised to withdraw their ambassadors form the Syrian capital until their Nov. 2 peace plan was implemented.
No one any longer credits his word after his repeated promises in the nine-month uprising against him to pull his troops out of city centers, release prisoners and enact reforms, while only piling on the savagery. His army is turning against him.
Even before the Arab League struck home, the tens of trained fighters going over to the opposition in the early months of the conflict were swelling in the last two weeks to hundreds, taking their arms with them. The ruling Assad clan and military command have reached a crossroads in the pact they concluded in March to extinguish the uprising regardless of the cost in blood.
He could make good on his threat to start a Middle East conflagration along with Iran and Hizballah. Most of the action would be aimed against Israel forcing the Arab League to go along with Syria and restore its status.
The war rumors sweeping Tehran after the explosions at the Revolutionary Guards bases and the hard choices confronting the discredited Assad regime have generated a highly perilous climate in the region. All its capitals are on edge for trouble.
Revolutionary Guards commander killed in Iran blast
A senior Iranian Revolutionary Guards commander in charge of the force's self-sufficiency unit was killed in a blast at a military base near Tehran Saturday, semi-official Fars news agency reported. A mysterious and massive explosion rocked the military arms depot near Tehran, killing 17 Revolutionary Guards Corps officers and wounding 17 others.
Work accident or sabotage?
Iranian officials said the blast was caused by an accident as soldiers moved munitions at the base in Bidganeh, near Shahriar, 45 km. west of the Iranian capital. The base is also believed to be the storage center for some of Iran’s most-advanced long-range ballistic missiles, such as the Shahab 3.
“So far, 27 personnel of Revolutionary Guards have been martyred and 16 others wounded, some of them are in critical condition,” Iranian broadcasting quoted Revolutionary Guards spokesman Ramezan Sharif as saying. The causality numbers were subsequently lowered to 17 dead and 15 wounded.
Armed Mobs Storm Foreign Embassies in Syria
Violent armed mobs stormed foreign embassies in Damascus and Latakia on Saturday after the Arab League suspended Syria.
The rioters hurled rocks at the building, beat a guard and broke into the embassy of Saudi Arabia, located three blocks away from Assad's office.
At least one Arab media report said that the embassy of Qatar in Damascus was also attacked.
Similar violence was perpetrated against the French and Turkish consulates in Latakia, 330 kilometers (210 miles) north of Damascus on the Mediterranean coast, residents reported.
The Arab League decision included a sweeping package of measures designed to significantly raise the pressure on President Bashar al-Assad to either comply with the agreement he made, or to step down from office.
Among those were a set of economic sanctions, recommendations for those Arab countries who have not yet done so to recall their ambassadors from Syria and a decision to seek the help of the United Nations in ending the violence.
PA Threatens 'Violence and Anarchy'
Palestinian Authority officials warned Thursday the region would descend into "violence and anarchy" because of the failure of PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas' statehood bid at the United Nations.
Officials in Ramallah refused to say what they were planning to do now that they have conceded the measure does not have sufficient support in the UN Security Council to be passed on to the General Assembly for a vote.
Regime backers express anger at other nations after Arab League suspends Syria
The Devil's Smile
Why is Ahmadinejad smiling? The answer is not a terribly complicated one. With every step he takes and every day that he remains in power, he discredits the most deeply held ideas of Western liberals about the power of diplomacy to resolve conflicts and internal civil disobedience to achieve peaceful regime change. Despite years of diplomatic and hundreds of thousands of protesters taking to the streets—Ahmadinejad’s grip on power remains as secure as ever.
Ahmadinejad’s smile is nurtured by the toxic self-assurance of a monster who knows he is unstoppable. Hitler wore that same smile as his armies tore across Europe, and only when those same armies were finally shattered and sent back in retreat at a terrible cost, did his madness finally turn on him and drive him deeper and deeper into delusion, and finally suicide.
Hitler believed he was unstoppable, because the only thing his enemies seemed willing to throw at him was diplomacy and more diplomacy. This only fed his grandiose complex and his sense of omnipotence, for how better to encourage a madman who believes that nothing can stand in his way, than to fail to stand in his way.
But Ahmadinejad’s story is also the larger tale of the Middle East. Where the world turns its face away from genocide, terrorism, oppression, gender apartheid and slavery by oil rich Muslim nations, while lambasting Israel in the hopes of winning their favor.
The Muslim world has gone from a fetid swamp to a radioactive dump, its green glow shining poisonously into the sky. And there is a very simple reason for that. Because when you do not oppose evil, or worse when you actively pander to it, the evil grows that much worse.
And lastly, this commentary is worth reading:
Why Did Sarkozy and Obama Disrespect Bibi?