Author Topic: Need to Evacuate the White Helmets From Syria  (Read 3905 times)

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Offline tomahawk6

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Need to Evacuate the White Helmets From Syria
« on: July 15, 2018, 17:57:38 »
Discussions are wat by the US,United Kingdom, France and Canada.Evacuate them to where is really the discussion.


https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/us-allies-discussing-evacuating-rescue-group-from-syria/ar-AAA6RZM?ocid=spartandhp
« Last Edit: July 15, 2018, 18:56:39 by tomahawk6 »

Offline pbi

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Re: Need to Evacuate the White Helmets From Syria
« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2018, 13:20:16 »
I hope they are successful: these people deserve to be helped, after risking their lives to help others.

Naturally, the Russians don't want these people to get out: they might provide some eyewitness testimonies that Moscow might find a bit awkward.
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The true measure of a man is what he would do if he knew he never would be found out...

Offline Fishbone Jones

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Re: Need to Evacuate the White Helmets From Syria
« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2018, 14:26:59 »
What a hoot it would be to see Trump and Putin come up with a workable joint solution to get them to safety. Heads would explode all over the world. 😆
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What scares me is how comfortable people are doing nothing about it.

Offline Colin P

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Re: Need to Evacuate the White Helmets From Syria
« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2018, 16:24:38 »
Interesting choice for an edit.  The only bit you changed is deleting a reference to where they could be evacuated to.

The only real group with a serious hate-on for them is the Russians.... and since Trump just went full-Monica Lewinski with Putin (saying relationship issues are all the Americans' fault), no 'right thinking' person should be doubting the Russians....   ::)

Except Trump is coming into talks just after having his troops wipe out 200 or so Russian mercenaries and friends. Putin knows Trump will be full of nice words, but will not hesitate to use force either. Not to forget Obama's "I have more flexibility after the election" quote to the Russian PM/FM (can't recall which). Obama was a weakling that inspired Putin. Trump is willing to lash out and not as predictable.

Offline CBH99

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Re: Need to Evacuate the White Helmets From Syria
« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2018, 17:07:22 »
I think we need to remember something, or keep something very much in mind.  Regardless of the Trump/Putin relationship, public statements made by either party, etc etc -- we need to remember that the Russians aren't always the bad guys, the way the western media constantly portrays them.

The Russians have very legitimate concerns about security & political issues that are happening car closer to their doorstep than ours, and they aren't being "provocative" and "up to no good" anytime they deploy anything outside of their own borders. 

Do we have the luxury of a population hearing only one side of a story for the most part?  Yes we do.  As do they, on the flip side of the same coin. 


Accusing the Russians of being up to no good for meddling in the elections of sovereign states is pretty hypocritical of the US.  Accusing the Russians of war-mongering for interfering in Crimea (Given the Russian perspective, was justified....not saying I agree with that, but we need to remember that perspective & perception of a threat is a hugely important factor we can't dismiss) is also pretty hypocritical when we look at US posturing towards China, Russia, Iran, Venezuela, etc.

My only point here is that we can't always assume the Russians are at fault for everything.  It's a convenience to point the finger at other countries and say "bad guys, look at what they are doing" -- but the world is far more complex than that...and the US can't remotely deny some of the Russian actions are simply a direct result of American actions.  A necessary counter balance at times, in my humble opinion.

**And yes, US military forces absolutely obliterated the Russian 'mercenary' force approaching their locations.  The Russians who survived and spoke about the incident publicly mostly ended up murdered or disappeared.  An incident I"m sure both have in mind coming into this, minus the people disappearing part**
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Offline pbi

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Re: Need to Evacuate the White Helmets From Syria
« Reply #5 on: July 17, 2018, 14:25:13 »
I think we need to remember something, or keep something very much in mind.  Regardless of the Trump/Putin relationship, public statements made by either party, etc etc -- we need to remember that the Russians aren't always the bad guys, the way the western media constantly portrays them.

Realizing that the Russians are not always the bad actors, or that they have legitimate security concerns, is not the same as minimizing or dismissing them as a threat to Western interests in general, and to the strategic balance in Europe in particular.  Ignoring, or trying to normalize their actions in the eastern Ukraine, is not smart either. I should say that I don't really see the Crimea in quite the same light, given its history, but apparently the Russians felt guilty enough about their actions to embark on the transparent Little Green Men farce (apparently supported by the Moscow Armoured Fighting Vehicle Collectors' Club...).

Similarly, consistently subjecting Russian actions to scrutiny, calling them out when caught, and maintaining a respectable level of force to counter theirs, are not the same as pointlessly "poking the bear".

As a deeply paranoid country with a largely unaccountable regime, no history of democracy, no real tradition of rule of law, and  very strong influences of extreme ethnic nationalism coupled with a state religion harnessed to the regime, Russia is IMHO not a fully reliable nor trustworthy player. Most of the influences which might give a US govt pause to think before acting either do not exist at all in Russia, or function only weakly. (Perhaps if Mr Trump has his ultimate way, pesky things like Congress, the Senate, the judicial system and a free and aggressive press can be reduced to the level of their opposite numbers in Russia. He can only hope...)

As George Kennan the US diplomat and father of Containment Theory once said: "Russia can have at its borders only enemies or vassals":"  I believe this is still true today. When the US emerged as the primary western victor in WWII, it assumed Great Britain's burdens all over the globe. One of those burdens was the strategic imperative that Europe must never be dominated by a single potentially hostile power. That's what got the US, for the first time in its history, into the entanglement of peacetime foreign military alliances that it had always avoided, by forming NATO and acting as its backbone and piggy bank. And that, in my opinion, is why the US doesn't really have the option to "abandon NATO', all Mr Trump's bluster to the contrary.

I don't see that anything much has changed since Kennan's day, particularly as the Putin regime revives the heraldry and regalia of Imperial Russia, toys with rehabilitating Stalin, and continues to scare its smaller neighbours. Can we have good (or at least nonviolent) relations with them? Probably, and we should pursue those when it's prudent to do so. Is there a role for them in the world community? Yes, of course: to deny that would be silly.

But let's never, ever take our eye off them, nor take them at face value.
« Last Edit: July 18, 2018, 07:57:09 by pbi »
The Nation that makes a great distinction between its scholars and its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards and its fighting done by fools. ...

The true measure of a man is what he would do if he knew he never would be found out...

Offline Colin P

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Re: Need to Evacuate the White Helmets From Syria
« Reply #6 on: July 18, 2018, 17:27:17 »
The thing about Russia in places like Syria, it has some clear and limited goals in the region. Mainly save Assad's regime, maintain a naval base in the Med and project geopolitical power and prestige for the Russian military by the most economical means possible. I would say they achieved their goals. They have for the most part played ball with the US and Israelis and likely have acted as a moderating factor in how the regime deals with the rebels and other forces. 

Offline Fishbone Jones

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Re: Need to Evacuate the White Helmets From Syria
« Reply #7 on: July 18, 2018, 20:24:49 »
Russia meddling in Syria = west upset.

US meddling in Iraq, Libya, etc = ok

Corruption in politics doesn't scare me.
What scares me is how comfortable people are doing nothing about it.

Offline Colin P

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Re: Need to Evacuate the White Helmets From Syria
« Reply #8 on: July 19, 2018, 17:51:33 »
Compared to much of the Middle East, Russia is a pragmatic, predictable and reliable actor both in alliance and opposition. the ME abounds with backstabbing intrigue and side switching that most westerners can't wrap their heads around. 

Offline pbi

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Re: Need to Evacuate the White Helmets From Syria
« Reply #9 on: July 20, 2018, 12:14:27 »
Compared to much of the Middle East, Russia is a pragmatic, predictable and reliable actor both in alliance and opposition. the ME abounds with backstabbing intrigue and side switching that most westerners can't wrap their heads around.

Yes, true. But then, compared to the Middle East, China is a paragon of human rights.
The Nation that makes a great distinction between its scholars and its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards and its fighting done by fools. ...

The true measure of a man is what he would do if he knew he never would be found out...

Offline Retired AF Guy

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Re: Need to Evacuate the White Helmets From Syria
« Reply #10 on: July 22, 2018, 10:13:19 »
Various news agencies are reporting that a joint international effort was able to rescue hundreds of White Helmet members and their families and evacuate them to Jordan. The latest news from the CBC

Quote
Canada to accept up to 250 Syrian White Helmet volunteers, family after dramatic escape

Canadian officials expected​ to​ immediately begin working with UN​ ​to process families

Murray Brewster · CBC News · Posted: Jul 22, 2018 12:49 AM ET | Last Updated: 31 minutes ago
 
Canada is among three Western nations that will accept hundreds of volunteer emergency workers that Israeli forces plucked from Syria under the cover of darkness in a dramatic international rescue, CBC News has learned.

Several hundred people — volunteers and their families — belonging to the rescue organization known as the White Helmets were extracted late Saturday from the southwestern portion of the war-torn country that's being overrun by forces loyal to leader Bashar al-Assad.

The Israeli military said Sunday it was responsible for rescuing members of the Syrian volunteer organization from the volatile frontier area and evacuated them to a third country — the first such Israeli intervention in Syria's lengthy civil war.


Quote
IDF

@IDFSpokesperson
 Following an Israeli Government directive and at the request of the United States and additional European countries, the IDF recently completed a humanitarian effort to rescue members of a Syrian civil organization and their families

11:32 PM - Jul 21, 2018

International reports have said up to 800 people arrived in Jordan, but senior officials say the numbers are in flux and will "likely fall below" the first reported estimates.

James Le Mesurier, who is considered the White Helmets' founder, said on Sunday that he believes 422 Syrians were rescued by the Israelis, who moved in because they were in the best strategic position to carry out the operation.

The White Helmets and their families were trapped in what had been — until recently — rebel-held territory. The area has for more than a week been the focus of a furious assault by Russian-backed Syrian government forces.

'We care about telling our people's story:' White Helmets head to the Oscars for Last Men in Aleppo
Trump's travel ban hurts White Helmets documentary's subjects, say filmmakers

The volunteers were spirited out of Syria in a highly secret international operation that involved the U.K., France, Germany, the Netherlands and Canada, multiple sources told CBC News.

Canada was not involved militarily in the evacuation, ​but ​helped lead the effort to bring them out of Syria and ​into Jordan.

'Impassioned plea'

Canadian officials are expected​ to​ immediately begin working with United Nations​ ​officials to help process families that will make their way to Canada in the coming weeks, possibly months.

The Liberal government has agreed to accept up to 50 of the White Helmet volunteers and their families, which could mean up to 250 people, according to senior officials who could not speak on​ ​the ​record because of the sensitive nature of the operation.

The number, officials said, could change.

The plight of the White Helmets was the subject of intense debate among foreign ministers at the recent NATO conference, the sources said.

The White Helmets are known for rescuing people from war-torn Aleppo. (Sultan Kitaz/Reuters)
Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland made "an impassioned plea" to her colleagues, according to several sources.

The families would follow in the footsteps of thousands of other Syrian refugees who were resettled early in the Liberal government's mandate.

Britain and Germany have also stepped forward, but the sources said other countries are expected to join the effort and offers to resettle them are expected to exceed the number of evacuees by a large margin.

At the moment, there are no plans for the United States to take any of the White Helmets, whose rescue efforts and documentation of civilian atrocities date back to 2013. Those volunteer efforts have drawn international praise as well as  condemnation.

At one point, they were thought to be favoured for the Nobel Peace Prize.

Russia, Syria pose threats

Russia and the Syrian regime, however, have labelled the organization, officially known as the Syria Civil Defence group, as terrorists and purveyors of fake news.

There were fears they would be killed once forces loyal to Assad retake the region.

"Sensitive" international negotiations to arrange their extraction have been underway since the NATO leaders summit in Brussels.

Article Link
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Offline Colin P

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Re: Need to Evacuate the White Helmets From Syria
« Reply #11 on: July 23, 2018, 10:53:37 »
i get the sense that this was one of the points in the latest summit with Russia, who then told Assad not to interfere and Washington called in a few cards with Israeli.

Offline Remius

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Re: Need to Evacuate the White Helmets From Syria
« Reply #12 on: July 23, 2018, 10:59:51 »
i get the sense that this was one of the points in the latest summit with Russia, who then told Assad not to interfere and Washington called in a few cards with Israeli.

*modified.

Not in the mood today to elaborate.   I officially retract my statement which was indeed sarcasm and did not add to the thread and may have offended a few people. 

cheers.
« Last Edit: July 23, 2018, 12:03:53 by Remius »
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Offline Fishbone Jones

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Re: Need to Evacuate the White Helmets From Syria
« Reply #13 on: July 23, 2018, 11:39:49 »
Yes, that must be it...

Care to offer your own explanation? Or debate the one you just challenged?

Or perhaps it was some Sheldon Cooper sarcasm.

Either way, it provides no meaningful addition to the thread.
Corruption in politics doesn't scare me.
What scares me is how comfortable people are doing nothing about it.

Offline Remius

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Re: Need to Evacuate the White Helmets From Syria
« Reply #14 on: July 23, 2018, 12:01:51 »
Care to offer your own explanation? Or debate the one you just challenged?

Or perhaps it was some Sheldon Cooper sarcasm.

Either way, it provides no meaningful addition to the thread.

No and no.

Yes.

Agreed.  I'll modify it.
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