The Obama Administration helped ignite the civil war in Syria as “the best way to help Israel,” a newly-released Hillary Clinton email published by Wikileaks has confirmed.
The document, case number F-2014-20439, number C05794498, is part of a mass publishing by Wikileaks of all the emails released by the Justice Department probe into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private server during her time as Secretary of State from 2009 – 2013.
“The best way to help Israel deal with Iran’s growing nuclear capability is to help the people of Syria overthrow the regime of Bashar Assad,” then-Secretary Clinton starts off the lengthy email.
Secretary Clinton then admits that negotiations with Iran will not prevent the Islamic Republic from enriching uranium, the key ingredient for building a nuclear weapon:
“Negotiations to limit Iran’s nuclear program will not solve Israel’s security dilemma. Nor will they stop Iran from improving the crucial part of any nuclear weapons program — the capability to enrich uranium. At best, the talks between the world’s major powers and Iran that began in Istanbul this April and will continue in Baghdad in May will enable Israel to postpone by a few months a decision whether to launch an attack on Iran that could provoke a major Mideast war.”
Secretary Clinton goes on to admit that the real concern over Iran’s atomic advancement is that it will end Israel’s nuclear monopoly in Middle East:
“Iran’s nuclear program and Syria’s civil war may seem unconnected, but they are. For Israeli leaders, the real threat from a nuclear-armed Iran is not the prospect of an insane Iranian leader launching an unprovoked Iranian nuclear attack on Israel that would lead to the annihilation of both countries. What Israeli military leaders really worry about — but cannot talk about — is losing their nuclear monopoly.
“An Iranian nuclear weapons capability would not only end that nuclear monopoly but could also prompt other adversaries, like Saudi Arabia and Egypt, to go nuclear as well. The result would be a precarious nuclear balance in which Israel could not respond to provocations with conventional military strikes on Syria and Lebanon, as it can today. If Iran were to reach the threshold of a nuclear weapons state, Tehran would find it much easier to call on its allies in Syria and Hezbollah to strike Israel, knowing that its nuclear weapons would serve as a deterrent to Israel responding against Iran itself.”
Secretary Clinton then draws the axis between Iran and Syria, and their combined threat to Israel. Toppling the Assad government, Secretary Clinton proposes, would solve this problem:
“It is the strategic relationship between Iran and the regime of Bashar Assad in Syria that makes it possible for Iran to undermine Israel’s security — not through a direct attack, which in the thirty years of hostility between Iran and Israel has never occurred, but through its proxies in Lebanon, like Hezbollah, that are sustained, armed and trained by Iran via Syria.
The end of the Assad regime would end this dangerous alliance. Israel’s leadership understands well why defeating Assad is now in its interests.”
The end goal of toppling Assad is to make it easier for Israel to accept a nuclear Iran, Secretary Clinton writes:
“Bringing down Assad would not only be a massive boon to Israel’s security, it would also ease Israel’s understandable fear of losing its nuclear monopoly. Then, Israel and the United States might be able to develop a common view of when the Iranian program is so dangerous that military action could be warranted. Right now, it is the combination of Iran’s strategic alliance with Syria and the steady progress in Iran’s nuclear enrichment program that has led Israeli leaders to contemplate a surprise attack — if necessary over the objections of Washington. With Assad gone, and Iran no longer able to threaten Israel through its, proxies, it is possible that the United States and Israel can agree on red lines for when Iran’s program has crossed an unacceptable threshold.
In short, the White House can ease the tension that has developed with Israel over Iran by doing the right thing in Syria.”
Secretary Clinton then explains why the Obama administration should use rebel forces as proxies to overthrow Assad, as opposed to bombing him directly as was done in Libya. She also outlines the strategy, using allies in the region:
“The Obama administration has been understandably wary of engaging in an air operation in Syria like the one conducted in Libya for three main reasons. Unlike the Libyan opposition forces, the Syrian rebels are not unified and do not hold territory. The Arab League has not called for outside military intervention as it did in Libya. And the Russians are opposed.
Libya was an easier case. But other than the laudable purpose of saving Libyan civilians from likely attacks by Qaddafi’s regime, the Libyan operation had no long-lasting consequences for the region. Syria is harder. But success in Syria would be a transformative event for the Middle East. Not only would another ruthless dictator succumb to mass opposition on the streets, but the region would be changed for the better as Iran would no longer have a foothold in the Middle East from which to threaten Israel and undermine stability in the region.
Unlike in Libya, a successful intervention in Syria would require substantial diplomatic and military leadership from the United States. Washington should start by expressing its willingness to work with regional allies like Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar to organize, train and arm Syrian rebel forces. The announcement of such a decision would, by itself, likely cause substantial defections from the Syrian military. Then, using territory in Turkey and possibly Jordan, U.S. diplomats and Pentagon officials can start strengthening the opposition. It will take time. But the rebellion is going to go on for a long time, with or without U.S. involvement.”
Interestingly, Secretary Clinton also believes Russia would never join an Allied coalition bombing of Syria. Of course, Russia unilaterally bombed Syrian targets years later:
“The second step is to develop international support for a coalition air operation. Russia will never support such a mission, so there is no point operating through the UN Security Council. Some argue that U.S. involvement risks a wider war with Russia. But the Kosovo example shows otherwise. In that case, Russia had genuine ethnic and political ties to the Serbs, which don’t exist between Russia and Syria, and even then Russia did little more than complain. Russian officials have already acknowledged they won’t stand in the way if intervention comes.”
It should be noted that the Wikileaks transcript of the email is incorrectly dated to December 31, 2000, which is an obvious error due to references in the text to the Syrian Civil War, which began in March 2011, as well as references to the May 2012 negotiations in Istanbul between Iran and the west over its nuclear program. Most likely the actual date of the email is December 31, 2012. At the time, Clinton was Secretary of State for President Barack Obama.
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