One of my worst fears has come to pass: the US has launched a missile strike against the Syrian government — something Hilary Clinton had suggested she would do, but Trump has now done.
The ostensible reason for the attack is that Syria has been accused of using a toxic nerve agent against its own civilians on Tuesday, killing upwards of 100 people.
I remain skeptical of the official account. Following the attack, I analyzed the information available, and let’s just say that the case for that accusation would not have stood up in a court of law.
The claim of using poison gas rests on a small number of ‘eyewitness’ accounts — which are, even when the observers are neutral, pretty much useless in a time of war. Which direction a missile came from, whether it carried the agent in question or instead hit an existing storage depot full of the stuff can only be determined after careful review.
Nothing of the sort happened here. There's not been enough time for careful review producing conclusive results. And those ‘witnesses’? There's plenty of initial evidence that casts serious doubts about their authenticity.
Instead, an accusation was leveled, the US media faithfully reported it as if it were gospel truth. Meanwhile Trump was presented with a few narrow options, and pushed to select one while under great political pressure to distance himself from Russia — and do it decisively. Almost magically, Tuesday's gas attack presented him with just such an option to do so.
Well, now it’s Game On.
I stand by my earlier reports explaining why I think going to war with Russia is a very, very bad idea. My October report Do We Really Want A War With Russia? remains a great primer for those looking to understanding this dangerous situation.
Of course, how Russia responds will determine everything. But according to Dmitry Orlov, whom I spent time with on a panel two weeks ago, the people of Russia are highly supportive of Putin and overwhelmingly believe that they are being cornered into a war they don’t want by nefarious and aggressive western forces.
With this mindset, it’s not hard to imagine a hardened resolve emerging in Russia to act in self-defense.
And just to make it clear: I consider this act to be rash, unnecessary, inflammatory, and a possible trigger for escalating the conflict between the US and Russia.
Hopefully things quiet down from here and Putin, once again, proves to be a cool and calm player. But if not, and if things start escalating further, I will issue an ALERT for you to accelerate preparations.
If you haven't yet read our report How To Prepare For War, now would be a good time.
The thing I worry about most is that if Russia does escalate, and a true kinetic war begins, the US military will find out if its anti-missile technologies are a match for Russian anti-ship missile technology. As I've written before, I have my doubts.
If not, then we may very rapidly see a sudden and dramatic reversal of fortunes that knocks the US military might down a peg or two — resulting in a loss of projected power (real and perceived). That risk leads to a dumping of US dollars by foreign entities that no longer feel they have to hold them out of a forced sense of allegiance.
That is, things could very quickly spiral out of control.
Of course, a full-out war between America and Russia could get a lot worse than a weakened currency, but…well…we won’t go there yet.
As you're flooded over the next few days with emotional material (the very definition of propaganda) about the horror of the Syria gas attack, please remember that it was only last week that a US coalition, and the US specifically, that dropped bombs in Iraq that killed 240 civilians.
Virtually zero news commentators are discussing this right now. To my eye, this reveals that the US concerns, whatever they may be, are not about protecting civilians from death and destruction.
The nerve gas ‘event’ in Syria could have been created by either side (or sides), and of them all, the Syrian government had the very least reason to do it. They were already winning, and would have known that such a move would have resulted in something like the attack that just happened.
My view is that Trump got suckered into this.
But now it’s done. And we all have to see what happens next.
Adam and I, as well as my wife Becca, are busy conducting our annual Peak Prosperity seminar, which kicked off tonight — so our time online will be a bit sporadic over the next three days. But we'll be monitoring developments closely, and will provide updates as this unfolding situation demands.