Sunday, October 26, 2008


Syria has been hip deep in efforts to kill Americans and Iraqis inside Iraq. They've funneled jihadis into Iraq since before Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Four years ago, I wrote that things really needed to start blowing up inside Syria to stop the Syrians from destabilizing Iraq:

Perhaps Syrian territory should be subject to attack when we see suspicious activity. And it might be a good idea for some things inside Syria to mysteriously start blowing up.

I'm not sure what we can do, but there must be consequences for siding with our enemies.

Well, we defeated the Syrian-supported al Qaeda terrorism campaign in Iraq. But Syria continues to push jihadis into Iraq. Even though the numbers are down and those who enter find themselves hunted rather than plugged into a functioning system to attack us, these jihadis still kill innocents in Iraq.

I've never been averse, in theory, to flipping Syria. But I think Syria hitched their fortunes to Iran and that option is now closed. Syria decided to be our enemy.

So, we finally struck Syria. Or rather, we hit a position inside Syria we believe was used to funnel jihadis into Iraq. One report says helicopters struck (probably with missiles) the target. But there may have been more:

A resident of the nearby village of Hwijeh said some of the helicopters landed and troops exited the aircraft and fired on a building. He said the aircraft flew along the Euphrates River into the area of farms and several brick factories. The witness spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the information.

That's interesting. I wonder what our troops collected? And will this lead to further strikes in the next weeks?

The Syrians displayed what can only be called chutzpah given their years of aggression against both Iraq and Lebanon:

Syria's Foreign Ministry said it summoned the charges d'affaires of the United States and Iraq to protest against the strike.

"Syria condemns this aggression and holds the American forces responsible for this aggression and all its repercussions. Syria also calls on the Iraqi government to shoulder its responsibilities and launch and immediate investigation into this serious violation and prevent the use of Iraqi territory for aggression against Syria," the government statement said.

One can wish for a Spartan pit of death for such envoys. Sadly, we are too civilized for such methods. But I hope the foreign ministry official at least gets a solid "bugger off" from our charges d'affaires.

The article at least hints at the history of Syrian aggression that came before our attack:

The area targeted is near the Iraqi border city of Qaim, which had been a major crossing point for fighters, weapons and money coming into Iraq to fuel the Sunni insurgency.

Not to worry, however, I'm sure our press corps will highlight the years of gross Syrian violations to place our single strike in context.

After years on defense, the first tentative counter-attack has been made. If the rat lines that run through Damascus are not ended, the threat of more attacks has been set out for Assad to see. In 5 or 10 years, Iraq itself could be strong enough to seek its own revenge if Syria is still around.

Consider Syria on notice.