[Marxism] Carnage in Syria a Product of US Empowerment of Saudi Arabia--really?

Andrew Pollack acpollack2 at gmail.com
Thu Feb 18 13:01:17 MST 2016

I read Part 1 yesterday (the linked Part 2 has video but no transcript,
only comments). I'll be damned if I can find it now, but as I remember
Prashad uses the phrase "proxies of the Saudis and Turkey" about 10 times,
with no other reference to any of Assad's opponents.

On Thu, Feb 18, 2016 at 12:47 PM, Louis Proyect via Marxism <
marxism at lists.csbs.utah.edu> wrote:

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> Since I follow Vijay Prashad on Twitter, I became aware of his interview
> with Paul Jay on the Real News Network:
> http://therealnews.com/t2/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=31&Itemid=74&jumival=15697
> I was intrigued by the subject heading. Is the carnage in Syria really a
> product of US empowerment of Saudi Arabia?
> Unlike raving Baathist lunatics like Mike Whitney, Vijay Prashad is a far
> more subtle commentator on the region taking great care to give the
> appearance that he is opposed to all intervention, either from the USA,
> Turkey and Saudi Arabia on one side and Russia and Iran on the other. This
> distinguishes him from the Baathist amen corner even though most of the
> discussion with Paul Jay had to do with Saudi Arabia's role in a proxy
> war--as they put it.
> But what does this really mean? (This is a rhetorical question since I am
> used to Vijay seeing Marxmail as a one-way street.)
> There have been, by Vijay's admission, 470,000 deaths in Syria. On one
> side you have MIG's, armored helicopters, tanks, heavy artillery, poison
> gas, rocket launchers that were in and of themselves insufficient to quell
> the rebellion. So now we have Russian bombers and battleships firing cruise
> missiles. On the other side, you have had for the most part machine guns
> and mortars with anti-tank weapons only entering the picture fairly
> recently. Does anybody think that an anti-tank weapon has been used to kill
> massive numbers of pro-Assad Syrians? Why would you waste a TOW missile on
> a Damascus high-rise when it would be much more useful aimed at a tank?
> This is not to speak of the refusal of the bloodthirsty Saudis to refuse
> supplying MANPAD's to the rebels.
> I don't know if Vijay Prashad or Paul Jay ever bothered watching a film
> like "Return to Homs" (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BuiFGECCmRw),
> which shows the asymmetrical nature of the war in Syria. Young men hide out
> in bombed out buildings looking like those in Stalingrad 1943 poke their
> machine guns out of holes in the wall to try to stop tanks. That's what the
> war has been about. And here we have a couple of Marxists, progressives,
> radicals, anti-imperialists--whatever they want to call
> themselves--basically arguing that the carnage in Syria is to be blamed by
> Turkey or Saudi Arabia providing machine guns and bullets to people whose
> only goal is to get rid of family dynasty that has enriched itself while
> the country goes hungry.
> Sad, really.
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