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Just Deserts

When the first news about the Israeli Air Force's recent visit to Syria broke, there was a lot of speculation about just what happened. First, it was reported that the IAF planes had "overflown" Syrian territory and dropped a fuel tank. (For the unitiated, that's pretty normal. A lot of military aircraft carry fuel tanks underneath, then dump them when they're empty -- that's why they're called "drop tanks.") That story kept growing and growing until it became a full-fledged air strike on a nuclear weapons facility deep inside Syria.

The official story, though, is... well, nothing. Syria isn't saying much, and Israel's saying nothing at all. In fact, the loudest protests are coming from North Korea, of all places.

So, in the absence of facts, it's up to people to keep speculating and guessing as to what the hell was going on over there, based on what little actual facts are available.

The theory that Syria had a nuclear weapons program going on, Israel found out about it, and pulled another Osirak seems pretty wild, but not completely far-fetched.

Syria has never really seemed that interested in developing nuclear weapons, but there have been reports that they aren't too proud to take others' hand-me-downs. There were reports of convoys of Russian trucks pouring from Iraq to Syria just before the US invasion, and the theory was that Saddam was getting rid of a bunch of his WMD materials.

Toss in the fact that one of the loudest complainers about the attack was North Korea, who is now insisting that they have gotten rid of their nuclear weapons program, and an interesting theory begins to take shape:

North Korea needs to get rid of its nuclear program so it can say "nope, we got nothing. Come and look for yourself." So they talk to Syria -- which is at least strongly rumored to have taken Saddam's stuff off his hands -- and stuff it on to a ship headed for Syria. Syria takes the stuff, hauls it out into the desert, and (with an assist from Iran) picks up where the North Koreans left off -- mixing up nuclear and chemical weapons, and the missiles to deliver them.

Then Israel finds out. They go to their ally, the US, and say "hey, you know those guys in Syria who keep backing terrorists all over the place, and are helping kill your guys in Iraq? They're working on WMDs and missiles to deliver them out in the desert."

The US says "yeah, right. Our spy dudes haven't heard ANYTHING like that, and they NEVER miss anything. Except the fall of the Soviet Union. Or 9/11. Or Libya's WMD program. Or whether or not Saddam really had WMDs. Or the disintegration of Yugoslavia. Or... um... hey, can we take a closer look at that?"

After much hemming and hawing, Israel figures that this is important enough to blow the secret that they can pretty much waltz through Syria's air defenses (the very best the Russians can provide) any time they like, and blow the hell out of the place.

Syria, naturally, is pissed.

"Mighty Dorktator, the Jooos blew the hell out of our secret WMD base!"

"How do you know it was the Jooos, and not just another screwup?"

"They left behind notes that read 'All Your WMD Base Are Belong To The Jooos' and 'Weer In Ur Desert Bombing Ur Nukes.'"

"Curse them! I shall immediately announce their perfidy and call on all the world to denounce them!"

"Curse them for what? Do we admit that we were working on nuclear and chemical weapons to bomb the Jooos, but they figured it out and bombed us first?"

"Curse them again! Well, then issue a strongly-worded denunciation for dropping a fuel tank in the middle of a desert. Say that they killed some poor nomad's favorite camel."

In the meantime, North Korea is pissed, too.

"We gave our best stuff to the Syrians, and they let the Jooos blow it up! Condemn them immediately!"

"Um... if we say that, Dear Leader Brillohead, then we will be admitting we had the stuff, and secretly gave it away."

"Good point. Make it a general condemnation of Israel for bombing Syria, then report to the Soylent Green plant for contradicting me."

Yeah, it's a fairly unfounded theory, but it does what any good theory does: it explains the known facts in a plausible -- and simple -- manner.

I find myself wondering if this is the sort of thing that we really ought to bring much light to. Perhaps I've read too many technothrillers and tales of international intrigue and high-stakes politics, but I have to consider whether this is best handled quietly -- no public admissions one way or another, just the message that "we know what you're working on, and we won't let you go too far." That avoids the whole issue of public pride and escalating demands and threats.

Luckily, that doesn't apply to me. I can speculate and ruminate and concoct all sorts of theories and scenarios without fear of actually having any influence on global matters.

But one thing remains absolutely and completely indisputable: SOMETHING happened out in the Syrian desert. SOMETHING Syrian was visited by Israel, and none of the parties directly involved wants to discuss it publicly.

I just hope those people who aren't publicly looking into it are doing a hell of a lot more privately.


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Comments (49)

Jay, on another site about ... (Below threshold)

Jay, on another site about a week ago someone did a hillarious imagined conversation between the Syrian military and the Russian "Missile Defense Warranty" depeartment.

As the Syrian keeps complaining about the faulty radar the Russians sold him, the Russian keeps urging the pissed off Syrian to "upgrade to the extended warranty package"...I was in tears!

Saddam gave Syria a life ti... (Below threshold)

Saddam gave Syria a life time warrenty on the hundreds of tons of WMD he shipped before the invasion. His lifetime turned out to be sort of short, as short as the rope they hanged him with, but longer than the brain Syria and North Korea used to blow themselves up while trying to figure out Saddams WMD's. It just keep getting more comical and making the no WMD (except when they were screaming that Saddam had WMD in the 90's) scream by the democrats more of a lie every day. Sad part is when a democrats lies that Saddam had no WMD the democrat leadership (joke) know they have fed the liars the lies.

Jay, that had me laughing o... (Below threshold)

Jay, that had me laughing out loud. Hilarious because it's probably very close to what's actually happening. Thanks for setting my mood to "har-har-mode" for the day :)

"U.S. officials tell ABC Ne... (Below threshold)

"U.S. officials tell ABC News they held a series of high level meetings with Israeli officials in July to discuss action against Syria."

I can imagine who was involved. Agendas?
Your lunch menu today, gentlemen, includes.....





Nothing like a great, boist... (Below threshold)

Nothing like a great, boisterous laugh early in the am.

Cleo,Jay writes the ... (Below threshold)

Jay writes the menu...your choice is limited: eat or leave. No one would allow you to serve them here, having seen your poor behavior everywhere else on the innertubes.

Obtuse, as per usual HugeNi... (Below threshold)

Obtuse, as per usual HugeNitwit;

The luncheon was served at the WH, and the courses were designed to please the guests.


Why, thank you, Miss Cleo. ... (Below threshold)

Why, thank you, Miss Cleo. I don't know why everyone says you're a con artist; I found those links rather educational. They merely affirm things I already believed.

However, I note that your so-called "rebuttal" boils down to "it's in accord with what these people I don't like think," and not in the form of an alternate explanation, a contradiction of the facts and theories I put forth, or in any way any sort of repudiation of what I wrote. Tell us, Miss Cleo, do you have anything to say beyond "those eeeevil Jooos and Neocons!!!!"?


I can imagine who was... (Below threshold)

I can imagine who was involved. Agendas?
Your lunch menu today, gentlemen, includes.....
...and you so obtusely inserted yourself into the agenda that your point was obscured.

Or were you serving there Cleo?

"do you have anything to sa... (Below threshold)

"do you have anything to say beyond "those eeeevil Jooos and Neocons!!!!"?"

How about, "Fool us once, shame on you. Fool us twice, shame on us".

Or;, With their history of accuracy, a simple statement of accepted fact like; "The Sun will rise in the East tomorrow", should probably be followed by a factcheck.

Know who's spin you're in Jay, unless you like being called 'sucker' twice.

You should read Tony Judt i... (Below threshold)

You should read Tony Judt in the NYT, today, Cleo, and absorb his last line.

OK, here's a shorter versio... (Below threshold)

OK, here's a shorter version of Miss Cleo's response to my "you got anything to back that up?"

"Anything a neocon says is a lie until proven otherwise -- and not even then."

Even shorter:

"Neocons and Joooos bad!!!"



Apparently Miss Cleo thinks she's back on Oliver Willis' page, where personal attacks are not only acceptable as a substitute for facts, but preferred.


Those who you used to suppo... (Below threshold)

Those who you used to support against us in Iraq, Cleo, are now lining up to fight with us against Iran. Where will you be, sucker?

Kim;Just like Clar... (Below threshold)


Just like Clarice, I am mystified at your failure to provide links to your unfathomable statements.

Well, learn and link. She ... (Below threshold)

Well, learn and link. She has. Tony's piece gave me schadenfreude satiety.

Frankly son, I don't want t... (Below threshold)

Frankly son, I don't want to make it easy to follow my thinking. You have to want it.

"Frankly son, I don't want ... (Below threshold)

"Frankly son, I don't want to make it easy to follow my thinking. You have to want it."

Your paternalism is heart-warming, but my father is deceased. In addition, your persona being an enigma wrapped in mystery, and told in parable, doesn't auger sufficient curiosity for wading through the swamp.

Oh, but you'd enjoy Tony's ... (Below threshold)

Oh, but you'd enjoy Tony's piece. Promise.

He's from the Remarque Foun... (Below threshold)

He's from the Remarque Foundation, you know, 'All Quiet on the Sunni Front'.

Shouldn't that be 'auger fo... (Below threshold)

Shouldn't that be 'auger for'?

Cleo stumbles through the t... (Below threshold)

Cleo stumbles through the thickets of the English language. Stick to well trod ground. You are less likely to fall flat.

Must've hit a nerve. More ... (Below threshold)

Must've hit a nerve. More OxyContin.

Cleo's best response. Hey,... (Below threshold)

Cleo's best response. Hey, send the A team.

You could have talked about... (Below threshold)

You could have talked about Tony and the moral high ground. You could have talked about Iran, Syria or North Korea. You could have talked about the English language. You could have talked about links and their value in rhetoric.

What do we get? Oxycontin. You are revelatory, this AM.

You could support your 'tal... (Below threshold)

You could support your 'talking' with facts that seem to, habitually, be missing from your posts.

I should be content with a pat on the head?

You don't seem stupid, but we shall never know the truth because we have to 'want it' on your terms.

Silly, isn't it?

I am struck by something at... (Below threshold)

I am struck by something at which you hint, Jay. If this was illicit WMD in Syria, then this was a tremendously good thing to have done. Why, with the world of geopolitical realities that we have today, does it seem like a good thing to hide that good thing under a rock. Surely, this is politically potent news. Why isn't it being used?

Let's hope it's rope-a-dope.

Hmm... OxyContin. Was that ... (Below threshold)

Hmm... OxyContin. Was that the stuff was so nasty addictive that the manufacturer got nailed with over half a billion dollars in fines for hiding just how addictive it was?

Oh, yeah, it was.

Surprised more people don't have sympathy for those who got hooked on it after believing Purdue Pharma's lies.


Oh shuttup, Cleo. You are ... (Below threshold)

Oh shuttup, Cleo. You are a sophistical mess. A plaything of an idle hour. Well, now I'm busy. Begone.

"Well, now I'm busy. Begone... (Below threshold)

"Well, now I'm busy. Begone."

Sweet surrender.

I'm guessing the activity i... (Below threshold)

I'm guessing the activity in July that Cleo points to was when Israel let us know what they'd found, and it took two months to retrieve a sample that would hook NoKo to it. Again, if true, this is devastating news to all the poor suckers who don't believe in the Axis of Evil. I can't help but think the news is being withheld for a more strategic political moment.

Surrender to your own ejacu... (Below threshold)

Surrender to your own ejaculations, Cleo. Look back over the thread. Have you done anything but contemplate, sourly, your own navel?

If that's Miss Cleo's stand... (Below threshold)

If that's Miss Cleo's standard, then she surrendered to me comments and comments ago.

Thanks for the affirmation!


Cleo will stick around unti... (Below threshold)

Cleo will stick around until he gets off a particularly self-satisfying piece of snark, then he'll depart to slumber contentedly in the swamp.

Bingo, he's Dot's 'Big Blon... (Below threshold)

Bingo, he's Dot's 'Big Blonde'.

OK, naptime. Heh, heh.<br ... (Below threshold)

OK, naptime. Heh, heh.

All is well with the make-b... (Below threshold)

All is well with the make-believe world of JayTea and Kim. Your solipsism is preserved for yet another day. >SuckersX2>

Lame, lame, lame. What do ... (Below threshold)

Lame, lame, lame. What do you think of Tony's article?

What article?The P... (Below threshold)

What article?

The Phantom strikes again with the nebulous, imaginary article. Dreams have substance in the world of conservatism.

Ah, I see that Semanticleo ... (Below threshold)

Ah, I see that Semanticleo is infesting this thread. 'cleo thinks that the fifth planet from the Sun is called "Jewpiter".

The successful Israeli raid... (Below threshold)

The successful Israeli raid against Syria has helped to inspire the U.S. towards a similiar limited bombing mission in Iran against IED factories and General Petraeus is helping to prime the American public for such a mission that could take place within days.

Israel lacks a stealth air force like the U.S., but was able to interfere with Syrian radar to covertly carry out the attack.

You can read more about this important story at my website, www.progressvalues.blogspot.com if you're interested.

I think it's just absolutel... (Below threshold)

I think it's just absolutely GREAT, Paul, how you'd lovingly leak secret plans! Because we've got a RIGHT to know, and there's no way ANY of it would ever get to people who might want to stop it! Your dedication to dissemination of the truth is amazing! You're a REAL patriot, Paul!

But the question is - for which side?

Actually JLawson, the Irani... (Below threshold)

Actually JLawson, the Iranian government probably closely monitors such news as well, and it should act as a strong warning to them to immediately change their government and policies if getting bombs dropped on them may only be just days away. News that carries a "big stick" should act as a strong incentive for some immediate changes in Iran's rotten government and religious leadership. The U.S. position with Iran is actually stronger with such news.

I half hope Paul is right. ... (Below threshold)

I half hope Paul is right. Actually, the mullahs are not mad, just greedy and power-hungry. Ahmadi-Nejad is crazy.

Cleo, I told you, Tony's article is in the New York Times and you'll enjoy it. Read it before the Old Grey Lady becomes a phantom herself.

I really liked the irony of 'Remarque'

Also, I wonder if King Pinc... (Below threshold)

Also, I wonder if King Pinch the Third's piss turns colors.

Hooson:You can... (Below threshold)


You can read more about this important story at my website, www.progressvalues.blogspot.com if you're interested.Would the phrase progressive values an oxymoron?

News that carries a "big stick" should act as a strong incentive for some immediate changes in Iran's rotten government and religious leadership.
Yes, it worked so well when Saddam had 150,000 armed to the teeth soldiers on his doorstep.

Oh wait... it didn't.

What, not shilling cheap ch... (Below threshold)

What, not shilling cheap chinese crap today, Hooson?

SCSIwuzzy:What... (Below threshold)


What, not shilling cheap chinese crap today, Hooson?

Last I heard he was getting his twice monthly blood screening for lead content by Dr. Won Hung Low.

Of course it always comes back negative, but Hooson feels SO MUCH better not knowing the truth!

hmmm. I thought the screen... (Below threshold)

hmmm. I thought the screening was for a mystery blood disorder that prevents digesting animal protein.
I thought Won Hung Low was the defense attorney that was seeking to free his wrongly imprisoned brother, as well as being his sherpa in pursuit of a PhD. (piled high and deep).

Occam's Razor, baby. ... (Below threshold)

Occam's Razor, baby.

In other news, Jay, that was just hilariously awesome.






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