Carly Fiorina’s No-Fly Zone Proposal Dead?
The Financial Times reports Moscow Scuppers US Coalition Plans for No-Fly Zone in Syria
Russia’s bombing of anti-regime rebels in Syria has been described as a disaster for the US-led coalition’s efforts to destroy Isis, the Islamist militant group, but the Kremlin’s real challenge to Washington is in the skies above the war-torn country.
Alongside a modest Latakia-based contingent of two dozen Su-24 Fencer and Su-25 Frogfoot jets — planes designed to strike land targets — Moscow has deployed assets which render the prospect of no-fly zones enforced by the US or its allies over Syria impossible to enact.
“The ultimate reason all this is happening is because of the renewed focus on Syria and the need for some sort of political solution there — something which we thought we could achieve by enforcing no-fly zones, safe zones,” said one senior European diplomat.
But any hopes of military co-ordination with Russia to achieve this, even in the wake of its disruptive deployment, are swiftly being dashed.
Deployment of S-300s — or other similarly sophisticated systems, also known as triple-digit Sams — has long been one of the Pentagon’s biggest fears in the Middle East. The S-300 system, which has an operating range of 150km, is capable of striking down all but the most sophisticated stealth aircraft. It means most missions flown by Washington’s coalition allies — Jordan, for example, uses F-16 jets — are now highly vulnerable. Even the UK’s deployment of Tornados and Typhoons at the Royal Air Force’s base at Akrotiri, Cyprus, is threatened by the missiles.
“The Russian forces now in place make it very, very obvious that any kind of no-fly zone on the Libyan model imposed by the US and allies is now impossible, unless the coalition is actually willing to shoot down Russian aircraft,” says Justin Bronk, research analyst at the Royal United Services Institute.
“The Russians are not playing ball at deconfliction — they are just saying, ‘keep out of our way’. The coalition’s operations in Syria will be vastly more complex from a risk assessment point of view and from a mission-planning point of view.”
The idea of a no-fly zone is not only illegal, it’s idiotic. The no-fly zone was meant to protect Al Qaeda rebels and little more.
The absurd irony of this setup is that Al Qaeda and ISIS both want to topple Syrian president Assad. The US would rather topple Assad than fight ISIS.
If indeed the no-fly zone proposal is on the ash heap of failed ideas, we should all cheer because that is where it belongs.
Nonetheless, Carly Fiorina says the US should enforce a no-fly zone in Syria, even if it means shooting down Russian aircraft.
The notion we should shoot down Russian planes when they are fighting ISIS (albeit not how we like) is crazy.
For more details, please see Trump vs. Fiorina vs. Obama on Isis; Fiorina and the “Law of Bad Ideas”.
Good News, Bad News
The good news is Fiorina’s idea of a no-fly zone appears to be on the ash heap of history where it belongs.
The bad news is Corollary #5 and Corollary #6 to the Law of Bad Ideas both suggest someone will come up with an even sillier action plan.
- Corollary Five: No politically acceptable idea is so bad it cannot be made worse.
- Corollary Six: Bad ideas lead to more bad ideas to fix problems caused by previous bad ideas.
Mike “Mish” Shedlock