On 19 July 2013, Martin E. Dempsey, the Chairman of the United States Joint Chiefs of Staff, delivered an unclassified letter to Senator Carl Levin concerning the risks of US military intervention in Syria. http://www.levin.senate.gov/download/?id=f3dce1d1-a4ba-4ad1-a8d2-c47d943b1db6. While the letter is was ostensibly delivered to the Senate, it actually delivered the equivalent to ten American thermonuclear bombs hitting Tel Aviv and Jerusalem simultaneously.
While the letter was supposedly written by Dempsey, it was surely approved and intensely vetted by President Obama himself. So while the letter had Dempsey’s signature, it was Obama’s policy. The Dempsey/Obama letter outlined all the catastrophic effects which would occur if the US militarily intervened in Syria to defeat Assad.
However, Obama’s real addressee was not Sen. Levin, but Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu. Obama’s real message: Bibi, forget about an American attack on Iran.
Here is a redacted version of Dempsey/Obama’s letter:
1. “Train, Advise, and Assist the Opposition.
The scale could range from several hundred to several thousand troops with the costs varying accordingly, but estimated at $500 million per year initially. . . . Risks include extremists gaining access to additional capabilities, retaliatory cross-border attacks, and insider attacks or inadvertent association with war crimes due to vetting difficulties.
2. Conduct Limited Stand-off Strikes.
Depending on duration, the costs would be in the billions. . . .There is a risk that the regime could withstand limited strikes by dispersing its assets. Retaliatory attacks are also possible, and there is a probability for collateral damage impacting civilians and foreigners inside the country.
3. Establish a No-Fly Zone.
We would require hundreds of ground and sea-based aircraft, intelligence and electronic warfare support, and enablers for refueling and communications. Estimated costs are $500 million initially, averaging as much as a billion dollars per month over the course of a year. Impacts would likely include the near total elimination of the regime’s ability to bomb opposition strongholds and sustain its forces by air. Risks include the loss of U.S. aircraft, which would require us to insert personnel recovery forces. It may also fail to reduce the violence or shift the momentum because the regime relies overwhelmingly on surface fires—mortars, artillery, and missiles.
4. Establish Buffer Zones.
Thousands of U.S. ground forces would be needed, even if positioned outside Syria, to support those physically defending the zones. A limited no-fly zone coupled with U.S. ground forces would push the costs over one billion dollars per month.. . . .Risks are similar to the no-fly zone with the added problem of regime surface fires into the zones, killing more refugees due to their concentration. The zones could also become operational bases for extremists.
5. Control Chemical Weapons.
At a minimum, this option would call for a no-fly zone as well as air and missile strikes involving hundreds of aircraft, ships, submarines, and other enablers. Thousands of special operations forces and other ground forces would be needed to assault and secure critical sites. Costs could also average well over one billion dollars per month. The impact would be the control of some, but not all chemical weapons. It would also help prevent their further proliferation into the hands of extremist groups. Our inability to fully control Syria’s storage and delivery systems could allow extremists to gain better access. Risks are similar to the no-fly zone with the added risk of U.S. boots on the ground.
We must anticipate and be prepared for the unintended consequences of our action. Should the regime’s institutions collapse in the absence of a viable opposition, we could inadvertently empower extremists or unleash the very chemical weapons we seek to control.”
First, Levin didn’t even really ask about the US attacking Syria; Senators Levin and McCain had primarily asked about the “costs, benefits, and risks associated with training and arming” the rebels. Nevertheless, Dempsey only obliquely responded to the ‘arming the rebels’ question Sen. Levin and McCain had actually posed.
Instead, Dempsey/Obama went on and on about why the US shouldn’t attack Assad. The letter was devoid of any strategic “intended benefits” of toppling Assad. For instance, retiring Gen. Mattis stated the fall of Assad would be the “greatest strategic setback for Iran in 25 years.” His “25 years” refers to Operation Praying Mantis where on April 18, 1988, under President Ronald Reagan, the United States, in a limited air strike with 2 American casualties, took out a huge chunk of Iran’s Persian Gulf fleet in a day.
Second, in the Dempsey/Obama letter, all you have to do is change the word “Syria” to “Iran” and multiply all the negatives by 1000, and Dempsey would sign it again. So, if Dempsey (really Obama) is dead-set against attacking a greatly weakened Assad, he is a 1000 times dead-set against attacking Iran for 1000 times all the same reasons and costs outlined in the Dempsey/Obama letter.
Dempsey is set for “talks” with Israeli leaders. His message will be clear. Obama demands are that:
-Israel must stop attacking Assad immediately, or the anti-Israeli DOD leaks will go nova.
-The US must “extinguish” all peaceful attempts to resolve the Iranian nuclear file before any military contingency can even be contemplated.
-Israel is not to disrupt Obama’s blossoming Iranian “partnership.”
-Israel had better not even think of attacking alone because, with Assad still in power, the Hizbullah will send thousands of missiles into Israel and America will not re-supply Israel.
Obama’s ‘promises’ to do “something” to Iran’s nuclear program was made to Bibi to force Israel to give in to Abbas. They will soon be exposed for the lies they always were.
The writer, who often writes on security issues, has created an original educational 3d Topographic Map System of Israel to facilitate clear understanding of the dangers facing Israel and its water supply. It has been studied by US lawmakers and can be seen at www.marklangfan.com.