Monday, July 21, 2014

The Blowback from Proxy Relationships with Rebels

On July 17, 2014, a military warhead brought down Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 that was headed to Kuala Lumpar from Amsterdam. All 298 souls aboard perished. Suspects behind the downing the airliner includes the likes of Russian Leader Vladimir Putin. Putin has sidestepped accusations of responsibility by denying involvement in the calamity. Granted, Putin was not on the battlefield and did not hit the arm and fire missile buttons. However, he still could be the enabler that armed the Pro-Russian separatists whom shot down two Ukrainian military aircraft days before the commercial jet attack.

In Ukraine, ethnic Russian separatists were engaging in a violent insurgency against the pro-Western government. Strong evidence of Putin's involvement has been present from the start of the insurgency. He is quick to proclaim his innocence but at the same time, he has not been so obscure about arming the rebels. The Reports say the Russian government has supplied field personnel to offer direction.

What Putin is doing is nothing new. It's called Proxy War and it works like this. Let's say a power wants to accomplish an objective in another country, but doesn't want to be directly involved. That power covertly arms the group tasked with achieving that objective with weaponry needed to get the job done.  The danger in engaging in proxy wars is you don't control the group you are supporting. If they decide to do something you didn't sign up for you can't exactly come out and admit to being in bed with them. Moreover, there is not a lot you can do to stop them.

The CIA knows the routine well. In the nineteen-eighties, they supplied Stinger surface-to-air missiles to the mujahideen fighting against the Soviet Army in Afghanistan.  These makeshift fighters started out armed with 100-year-old Lee-Enfield rifles. The CIA supplied them with artillery that could take aircraft out of the sky; thus shifting the war in their favor. The plan worked. The Stingers derailed the Soviet's aerial dominance. In 1988, nine years after the Soviets invaded Afghanistan, they backed out in defeat. The CIA concluded that project trying to buy back leftover stingers. The move was to eliminate a future scenario of the West facing their own artillery and munitions in a conflict. They were right to be concerned about future weaponry "blowback."

"Out of that CIA-backed resistance emerged the Taliban. The Taliban at the time controlled most of Afghanistan. They were a part of the sprawling terrorist enterprise headed up by Osama bin Laden. 
U.S. intelligence indicated machine guns and antiaircraft Stinger missiles to be in the hands of the Taliban regime's military. The same equipment was possibly in the clutches of the armed militias that surround Osama bin Laden.
US forces undertaking a ground operation faced the real possibility know as blowback.  US-supplied weaponry and training could be one of their nemeses in a faceoff with the Taliban cause US casualties." Source 

The downing of Flight MH17 could be the blowback of armed rebels shooting at things they are not supposed to, like passenger jets. This could well be how Vladimir Putin got himself mixed up in the dirty business of a downed jetliner with 298 souls dead.

Putin displays a genetic logical fallacy in his attitude toward the downing of the jetliner. He has been quick to condole the civilian loss of life while insisting that Ukraine is responsible for the incident. Yet, on the heels of his pointing to Ukraine, evidence emerges suggesting Putin backed rebels are responsible.

Then also, the downing of Malaysia MH17 may have been a horrific mistake made by rag-tag fighters. Fighters with itchy trigger fingers prompted to shoot at anything flying over a designated as a war zone.  Whoever is responsible, this sort of blowback is always a possibility when arming rebels that have no direct allegiance to those arming them.

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