The German government’s plan to send troops to fight ISIS in Syria is “reckless,” ignores the fact that terrorism is in Europe, and only support of Syria, Iran, Russia, and Hezbollah can halt ISIS, the editor-in-chief of Germany’s leading intellectual journal Zuerst, has said.
Speaking during an Iranian Press TV interview, Manuel Ochsenreiter, who is an expert in Middle Eastern matters and a veteran foreign correspondent, said that the offer by the German government to provide support troops on the ground in Syria “made no sense at all.”
“The Paris attacks took place inside Europe. So if the Berlin government wants to fight terrorism in Europe, it makes no sense to deliver support to the western allied forces in Syria or in Iraq,” he said.
Ochsenreiter said that the German military would do better concentrating on fighting terrorism in Europe, and especially in Germany. In Europe, he said, there is an “open borders” situation, and there is no control whatsoever over who is entering the country, or what they are doing there.
“The state has completely given up on any control over what is happening on the ground inside Europe,” he said, adding that instead of spending millions on putting armed forces into Syria, the government should rather reestablish control over what is happening within Germany’s borders.
He went on to list a number of action points which were needed if the German government actually wanted to fight terrorism in Syria.
The first thing that needed to be done, he said, was to “support those forces on the ground” who are actually fighting terrorism. He named these forces as the armies of Syria, Hezbollah, Iran, and the Russian Federation.
It was senseless, he said, to undertake any operation in Syria without coordination with those armies.
The second thing that needed to be done was to immediately halt all sanctions and embargoes against the Syrian Republic, Russia, and Iran, “because these are the countries fighting terrorism.”
Then it is necessary to go into direct cooperation with the Syrian government, as only they can help solve the terrorist danger in Europe. In this regard it was important to offer support to the Syrian army “instead of offering support to the enemies and to the terrorist supporters” in Syria.
He pointed out that the German government was at this very moment supporting both Saudi Arabia and Turkey, “and these are two countries that openly support terrorism in the Middle East.”
As long as the German government refrained from taking any of these steps, he said, any military operation was pointless and would only endanger the lives of German military personnel—and especially German pilots.
“I do not want to know what will happen if we see the first German pilot in a cage of IS terrorists,” he concluded, referring to the ISIS habit of murdering prisoners in public.