Dr. Mark Tomass on the US Military Strikes of Iraq's Popular Mobilization Force
My discussion with a former US ambassador and an Israeli professor on the US bombardment of Iraqi militia positions on the Syrian-Iraqi border.
My main conclusion was that we need to distinguish between the anti-corruption protests and the regional conflict between Iran-Iraq-Syria-Lebanon-Israel. Apart from the anti-corruption protests, the current violence is a symptom of the persistent regional conflict between Israel and its bordering and non-bordering neighbors. We will not be able to understand the motives of the various parties involved without discussing the root causes of that conflict.
The Future of Middle East, an expert analysis by Dr. Mark Tomass
My edited interview with Jaffar Hasnain entitled "IS THERE AN END TO THE SYRIAN WAR?"
Dr. Mark Tomass on Biden and Turkey-US relations
Few thoughts on:
1. THE VERDICT IN THE CASE OF THE ASSASINATION OF LEBANON'S FORMER PRIME MINISTER
2. THE FUTURE OF US & TURKEY RELATIONS IN THE LIGHT OF JOE BIDEN'S REVELATIONS OF HIS PLANS TO TOPPLE THE CURRENT TURKISH GOVERNMENT
1. Many Middle Eastern political analysts still believe that Hezbollah can be disarmed through external political and economic pressure on Lebanon and few believe that the today's shy verdict of the UN Tribunal regarding the assassination of Rafiq al-Hariri can serve that purpose. However, that is wishful thinking. Nothing short of a full-scale US-Israeli invasion of Lebanon similar to the invasion of Iraq could accomplish that task and at the expense of hundreds of thousands of casualties. Because neither the US, nor Israel is willing at this time to commit to such a plan, the Lebanese political forces would be wiser if they work together to diffuse current tensions and be realistic in the direction to which they want to take their fragile political system and country that looks nothing like a functioning nation-state.
2. Powerful political forces in the US and Europe have been disenchanted with the direction to which the Turkish Justice and Development Party has been taking Turkey, namely away from the secular state that its modern founder Mustafa Kamal (Ataturk) intended it to be. One therefore must understand Joe Biden's plan to support the Turkish opposition forces in that light as opposed to Biden's emphasis on the "autocratic" personality of its president and his attitude "towards the Kurds." Strong Middle Eastern allies of the US feel threatened by Turkey's contemporary attempts to reclaim territories the Ottoman Empire lost during and after World War I and believe that Justice and Development Party is actively attempting to set foot in such territories either directly or through proxy forces. However, it is not clear yet how far the US power brokers are willing to go to effect change in Turkish political life.
Dr. Mark Tomass on Operation Peace Spring
G20 Summit with Guest, Dr. Mark Tomass
Dr. Mark Tomass on Turkey US relations
As the United States Army withdraws from border areas between Syria and Turkey to allow for the imminent Turkish military incursion into the Upper Mesopotamian part of Syria (Al-Jazeera) to be carried out without confrontation, it leaves the Kurdish forces that the US trained and armed no reasonable choice but to withdraw to the south and subsequently to settle peacefully with the central Syrian government. However, the Turkish incursion is bound to have a long-lasting impact on the future of that region in terms of planned permanent demographic and political change, as Syrian refugees are resettled along the border, thus realizing the desired project to establish the “Arab Belt” which the Syrian government had long wanted, but was unable to fully realize since the early 1970s. The forthcoming incursion will also make many neo-conservative politicians and pundits extremely unhappy as it would obliterate any chance for a Kurdish mini state to be established to the east of the Euphrates River in the Syrian part of Upper Mesopotamia. This view was clearly expressed by the White House official listing to President Trump’s phone call with the Turkish President Erdogan and subsequently leaking the content to Newsweek to express dismay Trump wasting an opportunity to “establish a second Israel in the Middle East.” The weeks that will follow will show whether President Trump will be able to withstand the pressure from his own republican Party to once again retreat from his announced policy to eventually lead America out of the Middle East.
Dr. Mark Tomass on the Problems with Operation Peace Spring
Dr. Mark Tomass from Harvard University giving his analysis
Dr. Mark Tomass, on the Trump Candidacy with ANews
Two issues face the United States and the world regarding the outcome of the US presidential elections. The first is the peaceful transition of power in the event Donald Trump does not achieve a clear victory. The second is how would the winner carryout his foreign policy, especially in the Middle East. Trump’s policy in the Middle East has thus far been contradictory. On the one hand, he sought to pull American troops out of Syria and Iraq, but on the other hand he wanted to persist in his anti-Iran policy by continuing its economic blockade. However, as we have seen in practice, an economic blockade of Iran also necessitates the blockade of Syria, Lebanon, and Gaza. Moreover, Trump has reluctantly acquiesced to the on-going policy of maintaining US military presence in Syria to secure Syrian oil revenue for the Kurdish militias as part of the project to create an autonomous zone dominated by the Kurdish militias. The primary purpose of this latter policy is to maintain strangulating the territories under Syrian government control and force it to cede at least a major part of the Golan Heights to Israel and to normalize its relations with it in line with the other Arab countries. While we will see a continuation of this project if Trump wins the election, a Joe Biden win, on the other hand, will expand this project by redrawing the maps to create a Kurdish separatist state as in Iraq and Syria and move to topple the current Turkish government through “supporting the opposition” as he publicly stated, but clandestinely by deploying all what it might take to achieve the goal of bringing Turkey back to US orbit and force it to abandon its Neo-Ottoman ambitions.
Dr. Mark Tomass, shares his perspective
We are witnessing the public emergence of a military and economic Arab-Israeli Axis to counter the Iran-Iraq-Syria-Lebanon-Palestine Axis, with Turkey coming under political pressure to be pulled on one side or the other, and while in the presence of American troops in Syria and Iraq, Kurdish separatists in Iraq and Syria seem to have chosen an alliance with the first axis. It remains to be seen for how long Syria can withstand the concerted effort to starve its population until its leadership pull out of the Iran-Arab Axis and give up its claim for the total return of the occupied Golan Heights.
Dr. Mark Tomass weighs in on President Donald Trump's unilateral plan in Israel
Dr. Mark Tomass and Dr. Herbert Reginbogin on the John Bolton firing
On US foreign policy under President Trump before and after the termination of John Bolton, the US National Security Advisor.
Jaffar Hasnain with Dr. Mark Tomass: where is the war in Syria heading?
On Turkey's forthcoming intervention in the northeast of Syria:
January 12— 2021 Trump 2nd Impeachment
The January 6 mob breaking and entering the Congressional Building was not just a response to the reckless incitement of President Trump but took place in the context of the political polarization of the American public that has been in the making since the corporate media’s business model changed from serious debate among people with different views to advancing editorial rants and reinforcing them with views of pundits hired just to amplify those rants. Because people are not willing to go out of their way to search for alternative views and are comfortable in staying within their comfort zone, they become susceptible to be agitated and manipulated to turn against each other just to serve the egos and interests of those manipulating them. With all that understood, tarnishing America’s self-image as an example of a country where power always transfers peacefully should not be the only legacy of President Trump. Despite Trump's narcissistic behavior, he at least avoided engaging in all out wars on several occasions, unlike his two predecessors who weaponized the Arab Spring Uprising of 2011, killing at least 600,000 people in Syria and still counting; invaded Iraq under false pretenses, killing at least 600,000 people since 2003. Moreover, what is ahead does not look good either, as the new Biden administration appears to be staffing its foreign policy team with interventionists as deadly as those who led George W. Bush’s team into the humanitarian catastrophe from which the Middle East has not recovered yet.
March 12 2020— Economic impact of Coronavirus
Dr. Mark Tomas highlights facts about Borders in the Middle East
Dr. Mark Tomas, Professor at Harvard University shares his thoughts
Dr. Mark Tomass Speaks about Iran's attack on US bases in Iraq
What would it take to contain the current US-Iran military conflict?
Dr. Mark Tomass on the Golan Heights Controversy
Mark Tomass, on the Trump-Erdogan Meeting and US-Turkey Relations
On the Turkish-US Summit today: Three reasons for the current anti-Turkish sentiments in the US and on the prospects of the US-Turkish relations in the light of the Russia-Turkey cooperation in Syria.
Dr. Mark Tomas on the US withdrawal from Syria
Dr. Mark Tomass on the Trilateral Syria Summit
Dr. Mark Tomass, Adjunct Professor at Harvard University, gives his analysis
As usual, people in many parts of the world are waiting for the outcome of the US Presidential elections and wondering how it will affect US Foreign Policy. Because the United States has approximately 800 military bases overseas in about 70 foreign countries, people are right to be concerned about how the United States will project its power in the world during the next administration. Based on our experience in the past four years of the Trump presidency and in contrast with the eight years preceding it with the Obama-Biden administration, where Obama-Biden-Clinton toppled the Libyan regime and attempted to topple the Syrian regime through directly militarizing the revolt against it, Trump has evaded US involvement in wars with the exception fighting ISIS (and in the process destroying major parts of al-Raqqa, Syria and Mosul, Iraq) and engaged, in coordination with Israel, in selective military strikes in Iraq and Syria to diminish Iran’s military presence in those countries. Thus far, President Trump has been attempting to resist overseeing the project of creating a separate state in the Mesopotamian part of Syria to serve as a buffer zone between Iran-Iraq and Syria. Trump also avoided direct clashes with North Korea, China, Russia, and Turkey. On the other hand, a Joe Biden victory on Tuesday is likely to revert to the Obama era policy of a more aggressive military intervention in foreign countries, especially in the Middle East, in the South China Sea and Taiwan, and in East European countries bordering Russia. Regarding the Arab-Israeli conflict over Palestine, rest assured that there will be no difference between a Trump and Biden administration. A Biden administration will not reverse the US recognition of Jerusalem as a capital of Israel, nor the US recognition of Israeli sovereignty over its occupation of the Golan Heights. Moreover, both are more than likely to acknowledge Israeli sovereignty over the West Bank and the Jordan Valley, thereby completing the Israeli acquisition of Palestine in its totality one hundred years after the 1917 Balfour Declaration to the House of Rothchild, where Great Britain initiated to the project of the creation of Israel immediately after the fall of the Ottoman Empire. This eventuality will sooner or later usher in the project of converting the nation-state of Jordan into an alternative Palestine.
Mark Tomass, on the Trump-Erdogan Meeting and US-Turkey Relations
Dr. Mark Tomass on Operation Peace Spring, Part 1
On the US media negative reaction to the US withdrawal from Syria and to the outcome of today's Russian-Turkish summit. Who is against the US withdrawal the defacto end of an independent Kurdish state in northeastern Syria and why?
Dr. Mark Tomass on Operation Peace Spring, Part 2
While Turkey has a legitimate right to have secure borders with Syria, "the Syrian National Army" that advanced into northern Syria from Turkey shows signs of being a Jihadi army after it was seen carrying out field summary executions while chanting "Allah Akbar." For the full episode discussing the Turkish perspective versus mine over the recent Turkish military incursion into Syria
Dr. Mark Tomass on Trump vs. Biden and their Policies in the Middle East
On the 10th anniversary of the Arab Spring Uprisings, the Arab world is worse off than it was ten years ago on the political, economic, and human rights levels. In almost all the countries that experienced it, the old ruling systems reproduced themselves, albeit in degenerated forms. Political, social, and economic progress stemming form grassroots levels cannot materialize without people granting each other individual freedoms and without an impartial judiciary and law enforcement to guard those freedoms. Unfortunately, in contrast to the European ages of Reason and the Enlightenment, the notions of individual rights and freedom have not evolved in the Arab world, which still lives in its traditional mentality of pledging allegiance to individuals as opposed to ideas. The Middle East has not experienced an intellectual revolution that produced the notion of individual rights and freedoms similar to the European experience three centuries ago. Historically, political, and economic change in the Middle East have always taken place from the top down in the form of military coup d'états, not the other way around. Without cultivating the notions of individual freedoms and individual rights, change from the bottom up is bound to lead to civil war. This is especially true in the Middle East, where for most people, religious identity is the primary source of political allegiance.
Pentagon-White House conflict?