My Violence Is Nicer Than Your Violence

Today, my least favourite Cheeto decided to tell Russia to ‘get ready’ in preparation for ‘ALL da Bombz’* that the USA will drop on Syria soon. He did this because the current president of Syria, Bashar Al-Assad, is alleged to have definitely chemically attacked a town in North-West Syria, killing 80 civilians. A horrendous crime against humanity, I am sure everyone will admit – well, apart from Bashar Al-Assad, obviously.

But hold on a minute. Why is Trump directing his tweet at Russia and not Bashar Al-Assad? Yep, OK. This is where things get complicated.

[IF YOU WANT TO KEEP THINGS SIMPLE AVOID THE NEXT THREE BIG PARAGRAPHS]

It is a long story but essentially a peaceful protest called ‘The Arab Spring’ sparked a civil war in Syria, that subsequently provided a lovely little power vacuum in the region. The power vacuum resulted in some kind of war of the worlds Simon Cowell talent show, bringing in contestants from all over the globe to see who could treat Syrians the worst.

In tonight’s show, we’ve got Bashar Al-Assad and his national army! Followed by The, always wonderful, Civilian Rebels! Don’t forget the Kurds! The Kurds are natives of a specific region, unfortunately for them, their native region spans 4 of the most war-torn parts of the world – Syria, Iraq, Turkey and Iran. So they’re fighting in all of these areas at the same time in order to regain control of its land – good luck gang! Oh and don’t forget ISIS! They couldn’t miss an opportunity to expand their territory now, could they? 3 is a crowd, 4 is a party I guess!

So that is that.

Ah no, not quite. Also part of the show tonight is the supporting acts. The Hezbollah don’t like the Kurds, so they’ve picked sides with Assad, as have Russia, because well, they spent a lot of money building an army, so pew pew! Oh and Iran is supporting Syria too, but keep that a bit hush hush. The US, UK and Europe mainly back the rebels, but they’re kind of friendly with Turkey and Jordan and they don’t like that so they flirt with the Kurds too. Out on a limb is ISIS fighting… well, everybody. They’ve just invited themselves to the party, spilt red wine on the nice new cream carpet* and made friends with no one.

So Russia is on the wrong side, or one of the wrong sides. I don’t know, there are a lot of sides here people! Anyway, what Trump was meaning by his tweet was; because Russia backs Assad and Assad killed civilians with chemicals, the USA, on behalf of some rebels, or Kurds, or a tree, or just anyone at all, will drop bombs that will inevitably kill more civilians to get those pesky Russians back. Take that Russia!

Just to reiterate that point. [Spoken slowly] Trump’s threat is that he will (probably)* kill some Syrian civilians to teach Russia a lesson for supporting a regime that killed some other Syrian civilians. Of course, the ignorant Syrians don’t appreciate that being killed via American made bombs is much nicer than a Syrian made chemical attack. Typical.

Strangely, not many other aspects of society operate in this way. If you go to the hospital because of a virus, the doctors, to my knowledge, don’t give you a nasty rash to say fuck you to the virus. Or if you went to the police station because someone stole your wallet, the Police say ‘Don’t worry we are on it!’ before burning out your car, ‘ha! screw you robber! That’ll teach you’.

Now, whilst Trump’s threat is pointless, reckless and dangerous, it isn’t any of these things for Russia, nor is it any of these things for the UK. That is because the three most powerful nations in the war have had combined casualties of 8, yes eight (not counting domestic terrorism which the world just pretends is not related in any way). Eight US, UK and Russian casualties though happens to be 106,282 less than the number of Syrian civilians killed in the war (so far). Not to mention the 3 million+ civilians that have fled Syria since the war began – word of advice Syrians: don’t flee to any of those countries bombing you, you are not welcome.

Unsurprisingly, being a rather half-arsed marketing graduate I don’t have all any of the answers needed to solve this war. It is an extremely complex, delicate and dangerous situation that will likely go on for many years. However, I will stick my neck out and say sending antagonistic tweets to rival superpowers is not the solution either.

Unfortunately, as always, the most important people are forgotten and those are the ones being chemically attacked and bombed. Russia need not be worried by Trump’s threat, they don’t need to stay awake at night looking up at the night sky, waiting for the nice bombs to fall because they aren’t the intended target. Just like Russia’s* aren’t intended for the US. Jingoistic rhetoric and posturing are all fine and dandy as long as no one gets hurt. Ah sorry, I mean as long as no one ‘important’ gets hurt.

Make no mistake, no one is in Syria to improve the lives of Syrians. So get ready Syria, Squirrel Girl is about to fight Herald of Galactus and we could lose a planet.*

Paul Green

*Almost a credible paraphrase.

*So deep.

*Probably is not an understatement. Since 2002 the US Army has increased collateral civilian deaths to unprecedented levels – higher than any modern war including World War 2.

*Russia has dropped around 6 to 7 times more bombs than the US-led coalition.

*Herald of Galactus is a Marvel comic book character that would destroy planets in battles with Marvel superheroes. What a Fantastic Four reference to finish on.

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