What we see in Syria today is presented by the Western media as a noble effort based on the policy of Responsibility to Protect (R2P) by the US and its allies to remove an alleged war criminal from power in that country. The hypocrisy of this claim is conveniently ignored by almost everyone in the West. However the citizens of Viet-Nam, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq and Libya, and many others, would be amazed by the way the killers who run the US Empire are allowed to clothe their actions with the pretense of protecting human rights and spreading democracy. While Syria has significant reserves of oil, the main interest behind the proxy war fought by the US, the UK, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey against Syria is a pipeline you have probably never heard of.
In 2009 the Assad government was asked to sign a proposed agreement with Qatar that would run the Arab Gas Pipeline from its North gas field through Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Syria and on to Turkey, with a view to supply European markets. The clear intention was to transport gas to the EU as competition and/or replacement for gas from Russia and from Iran. The Assad government refused. According to former French foreign minister Roland Dumas, Britain started to plan covert action in Syria that same year.
Qatar's Proposed Arab Gas Pipeline
To make matters worse, the Assad government signed two deals with Iraq and Iran for oil and gas pipelines through Syria:
"In late 2010, his government signed a memorandum of understanding with Iraq for the construction of two oil and one gas pipeline to carry gas and oil from Iraq’s Akkas and Kirkuk fields, respectively, to the Syrian port of Banias on the Mediterranean Sea. In July 2011 Iranian officials announced a $10 billion gas pipeline deal between Syria, Iraq and Iran that would transport gas from Iran’s South Pars gas field, the world’s biggest, through Iraq to Syria."(1)
This Iran-Iraq-Syria pipeline plan was a “direct slap in the face” to Qatar, the Saudis and Turkey.
There are two sides to the oil driven wars in the Middle East. The first is for control of the oil in a given country like Syria. According to the International Business Times:
"Syria controls one of the largest conventional hydrocarbon resources in the eastern Mediterranean.
"Syria possessed 2.5 billion barrels of crude oil as of January 2013, which makes it the largest proved reserve of crude oil in the eastern Mediterranean according to the Oil & Gas Journal estimate.
"Syria also has oil shale resources with estimated reserves that range as high as 50 billion tons, according to a Syrian government source in 2010."(2)
The other side of these wars is driven by pipeline politics. In the same way the Taliban was overthrown in Afghanistan after they demanded too much for the Unocal pipeline through their territory, Syria’s Assad is being attacked by the West and Western backed states like Qatar and Saudi Arabia because the Assad government has its own plans for pipelines through its territory. This is why the US Empire wants to break the power of states like Syria and Iraq, so their oil and gas companies can do what they want, as in the old days of the League of Nations "mandates" after World War II.
Of course oil in Syria and pipelines through the country are the real reasons for the US Empire's war against Syria. Who asks for the reason why the people of Syria are resisting this aggression? For them it is just another very bloody stage in their long struggle for independence. For centuries they were part of the giant Ottoman Empire. During World War I they fought to defeat the forces of this empire. After World War I they were made a colony of France, and after World War II they had to deal with the manipulations of the newest empire, that of the US. They have spent the last 95 years fighting for their independence from the West.
In their history, Syrians have time and time again made it clear they want to run their own country, but observers in the West of virtually all political persuasions can only see a conflict over human rights, democracy or oil and pipelines. Anyone who thinks the current war on Syria is anything other than a continuation of the naked imperialist aggression of the 19th and 20th centuries is completely blinded by the lies and bogus morality of the murdering pirates who run the US Empire.
Syria's struggle for independence is discussed in the following articles:
Part 1: Syria's Struggle for Independence: 1916 to 1963
Part 2: Syria's Struggle for Independence: 1963 to 2015