The belief that Assad of Syria needs to go is nearly universal. Few doubt he has committed atrocities, but why does the US seem to be running ahead of the UN inspectors to bomb Syria before a report can be filed?

According to retired NATO Secretary General Wesley Clark, a memo from the office of the Secretary of Defense shortly after 9-11 included plans to “attack and destroy the governments in 7 countries in five years.” The list included Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Iran.”  Clark claims the strategy was about controlling oil in the Middle East.

Again, no one doubts that Assad has behaved like a monster, but the US has said that their intent in striking Syria will not be to bring about regime change, so what is going on? In 2008 the Army funded a report called Unfolding the Future of the Long War. The Chilling title is only the beginning. The report explored possible strategies for the Middle East:

“Divide and Rule focuses on exploiting fault lines between the various Salafi-jihadist groups to turn them against each other and dissipate their energy on internal conflicts. This strategy relies heavily on covert action, information operations (IO), unconventional warfare, and support to indigenous security forces… the United States and its local allies could use the nationalist jihadists to launch proxy IO campaigns to discredit the transnational jihadists in the eyes of the local populace… US leaders could also choose to capitalize on the ‘Sustained Shia-Sunni Conflict’ trajectory by taking the side of the conservative Sunni regimes against Shiite empowerment movements in the Muslim world…. possibly supporting authoritative Sunni governments against a continuingly hostile Iran.”

It is conjecture to say the US is acting on such a brutal and inhumane strategy of playing sects against one another to destabilize the entire region, but our actions in the Middle East instantly begin to make sense if that was the goal. After all, Syria is not the only nation with its monsters. Much of the world is run by brutal bullies drunk on power. It is a serious mistake  for us in the US to believe our own leaders are necessarily immune.