Before we proceed, I want to be unquestionably clear about the following point. The Russians are, have been, and always will be the bad guys. This is certainly due in part to their James Bond villain like leader Vladimir Putin and his recent actions in Crimea and the Ukraine. But honestly, it is equally due in part to the mental map in my head not changing much since 6th grade Social Studies. I grew up knowing that the Soviets, ahem, I mean Russians were the bad guys and I am simply too full of 1980’s propaganda to shift on the matter. They killed Apollo Creed, killed Patrick Swayze’s father, and ruined Rambo’s game of horse polo in Afghanistan. These are crimes for which there must be a reckoning. Wolverines! That being said, I loathe ISIS. Not to be outdone, I also loathe Al Qaida. In fact, even if you were not an official member of Al Qaida and you wore a “Keep Calm and Jihad” shirt to my Halloween party, I would probably ask you to leave. And for a brief moment in time, it appears that the Russians might be killing these very people. Dasvidaniya ISIS, which means goodbye in Russian. I think, I don’t know, I googled it.
The Assad Regime
Russia is in the news recently because they are sending military forces to Syria. Tanks, Artillery, Russian Marines, and presumably more have been flowing into Syria these past few weeks. It appears that more than military aid, Russia is prepared to start militarily defending the Assad regime in coordination with Iran. On top of all that, the Assad regime was pretty awful to begin with. Torture, political prisoners, mass oppression, basically, you name it, Assad has done it. Bush may have coined the phrase Axis of evil, but it might have been premature because these guys might be it.
But I have to tell you, millions of refugees were not streaming into Europe during the Assad regime, children were not getting sold into sexual slavery, and douchebag jihadist were not burning people alive. I am not saying the Assad regime were sweethearts. However, I am honestly asking the question we have all been thinking since Saddam Hussein swung from the gallows. In light of the result, was America, or even the very people of the region for that matter better off with Middle East tyrants?
Fair question, as much as I believe in it, talk to me what you will about the virtue of Democracy, but not sure what that means to the people being slaughtered and raped today. Al Nursa, Al Qaida, and ISIS will hardly be stewards of a free and Democratic society. And yet, they seem to be the only people with the gumption to take on tyranny in the entire region. If you believe the “refugee” storyline, the only people in the region who care about being free are running for the hills, aka, Europe. So what are we to think of the past 4 years since the Civil War started in comparison to the 40 plus the Assad family has reigned? What are we to surmise about the next 4 years if the Assad regime were to fall? Not smart enough to figure it out myself, but it is an honest question that spans partisan politics.
Back to the USSR
I mean Russia of course. I don’t believe for one second they are up to any good. Truthfully, 99% of the world will never be privy to the power plays that take place between nations, multi-national corporations, or even individuals of unsurpassed wealth. There could very well be greater issues at play here in Syria than any of us realize, but I can only judge off what my eyes see. And it looks like Russia wants to kill ISIS to defend their buddy Assad and I am wondering if I should even care. Putin clearly intends to slap the Obama administration in the face by propping up the regime and invalidating his mandate that the Assad regime go. But to be honest, it almost seems like Putin swooped in and asked Obama’s dream girl to the Prom first, because Obama was waiting for that special moment. America’s plan was admittedly going to take years, but it would appear Putin’s could take less.
Oh children, how you know not the joys of the Cold War. It was simple. Good guys and bad guys, bang bang bang, pew pew pew. America knows how to handle Russia as we have been doing that since 1945, but this Middle East thing is just weird. Am I supposed to hate Islam or not? Do I support Democracy or not? But I know I am supposed to hate the Russians because that is just a fact. It is a scientific fact, from the 80’s. So who cares if Russia props up the Assad regime, dispatches ISIS, and then America is just back to good old fashioned Cold War stuff. I don’t like ISIS, but the Cold War was tops in my book. What is a Wolverine to do?
What to do?
Honestly, I don’t know. But this is the point you breathe a sigh of relief that I am your friendly blogger at Unprecedented Mediocrity and not President. However, as a blogger, I can start asking powerful questions we as the public must consider. I know Russia in Syria makes them close to Israel, but Putin is not that stupid. I know Iran is pursuing a Nuclear weapon, deal or no deal style, and this makes the region volatile. But I also know the entire region is absolutely nutty and potentially in need of Democracy. But if I am entirely honest with my own thought, it might be in need of a tyrant. I recognize 50 years could tell a different story, but today I only know the one I am given.
An honest question for America is whether Democracy in a region where the citizenry hates us is a wise policy. An honest question for America is whether or not a post-Assad Syria will be worse for its own women and children than the past 40 years under an Assad. And an honest question for America is whether it is so bad that Russia goes in and does all the dastardly things to ISIS we were told they would do to us in the Cold War. Strange times America, but we should be prepared for it all. However, I will never worry about the future of America. Yes, it is because I believe in our strength and values. But mainly, it is because I saw how Rocky won over the crowd in Moscow. For if he can change, and they can change, then everyone can change. Except for the Russians because they are still the bad guys. And for the last time, Wolverines.
If you like tough questions, like the Unprecedented Mediocrity Facebook page below.
[efb_likebox fanpage_url=”unprecedentedmediocrity” box_width=”250″ box_height=”” locale=”en_US” responsive=”1″ show_faces=”1″ show_stream=”0″ hide_cover=”0″ small_header=”0″ hide_cta=”0″ ]