Many readers inquired about the welfare of our home in Oklahoma City after the recent devastating tornados. Thank you for your concern. Fortunately, we live in the north end of the city and were spared. Our son has a horse ranch in Norman and received only tree damage. The month of May has certainly been a war zone. We hope it is over.

            Speaking of war zones  — the entire Middle East is taking on that look. From Turkey to Iran, the situation is serious. Resembling a raging wild fire, the winds of war continue to sweep in devastation. My fear is that the escalation may well push chaos to a higher level. If the Syrian war continues to spread to Lebanon, Turkey, and Jordan, unpredictable circumstances could explode. Former Secretary of Defense Bob Gates recently made an important observation by noting that the outcome of wars was always unpredicatable. Remember Iraq?Viet Nam? Korea? Each upheaval turned out differently than expected. The Syria situation rides in the same boat.

In the middle of May, Syrian President Bashar Assad called on Hezbollah to join the fight. Citing Israel as the ultimate enemy, Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah welcomed the opportunity to formally join the Syrian civil war. Tension went up a notch. This past week, reports from Syrian indicated that Hezoballah and the Syrian government did indeed step up their attacks on the rebels in the town of Qusayr. In turn, rebel leaders claimed that the battle was actually about giving Nasrallah and Hezbollah  a claim to victory on the battlefield. Rebels said the loss of Hezbollah fighters created a need to justify their deaths.

Like a scene from Star Wars. the battles seems endless and the intrigue only grows with each passing day. There is currently no independent confirmation of what occurred in Al Qusayr but both sides claim to have prevailed. What is clear is that the city is being destroyed and turned into rubble with at least 22 people killed to date. At this point, the entry of Hezbollah has only increased the destruction. Obviously, Assad has received more support, but whether it will turn the tide in his favor remains to be seen.

Actually, the Syrian war is slidding toward a conflict between Shi’ite and Sunni groups with outsiders from both camps pouring into Syria to join the fight. The result is that the entire Middle East is being drawn into the conflict as these two groups continue their centuries old warfare. Saudi Arabi and Iran border each other but are on completely different sides of the religious conflict. When the battle cry becomes, “Protect Islam!,” the stage is set for a religious war – the worst kind recorded in history.

At this point, America’s involvement is basically the USA’s concern for its ally Israel. Of course, in the eyes of the Arab Moslem world, this is regarded as bad enough, but America is till standing on the side line. Clearly, three fourths of the American population do not want USA soldiers in another war.

Hard to figure out where all of this is going? Hard to figure out why the war escaletes? Perhaps, it might remind you of a similar time about a hundred years ago. War World I erupted after an assassination of an Archduke in Sarajevo  that most Americans had never heard of. In a short time, Americans were dying on the battlefield.

Seems   a little scary? It is.

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Filed under Iran, middle east, Turkey

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