The U.S. Embassy in Damascus urged its citizens in Syria to depart “immediately,” and Turkey’s foreign ministry urged Turkish pilgrims to opt for flights to return home from Saudi Arabia to avoid traveling through Syria.
“The U.S. Embassy continues to urge U.S. citizens in Syria to depart immediately while commercial transportation is available,” said a statement issued to the American community in Syria Wednesday and posted on the Embassy’s website. “The number of airlines serving Syria has decreased significantly since the summer, while many of those airlines remaining have reduced their number of flights.”
The warning followed an announcement in Washington this week that Ambassador Robert Ford would not return to Syria this month as planned, indicating concerns over his safety.
The Obama administration quietly pulled Ford out of Syria last month, citing credible personal threats against him.
The Turkish foreign ministry on Wednesday urged Turkish pilgrims to opt for flights to return home from Saudi Arabia and avoid traveling through Syria for security reasons.
The warning came two days after Syrian soldiers opened fire on at least two buses carrying Turkish citizens, witnesses and officials said, apparent retaliation for Turkey’s criticism of Assad. The Turks were returning from Saudi Arabia after performing the annual Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that the Russians and the Chinese are going to go along. In fact, as I reported on Monday, Russia has put warships in place for a showdown with NATO and, as I reported on Wednesday, Russia has provided Syria with Yakhont land-to-sea missiles.
Will NATO go to war against Russia? (You can bet that with Obama in charge, the US won’t do anything alone). What could go wrong?
I would sincerely warn Israel to not get involved with Syria. This is none of it’s business. Let these people work out their own problems. If the United States attacks Syria then Syria will retaliate by attacking Israel with biological warfare. There is nothing to be gained here by helping the Muslims overthrow their secular Allawite oppressive ruler. I’m the first person to be critical of Assad, but you hear it here first. The direction that this is going is really bad for everyone… including the Jews. Let the Arabs deal with their own problem. Let the Russians deal with this. If things get bad enough then Assad’s generals will defect to the people from within… not that any of this matters. Whoever wins… we lose. Stay out. Remember this post, because this is me saying I told you so. I know when things get bad people will blame me for this… so this blog post is my evidence that I do not endorse attacking Syria…. I didn’t endorse attacking Libya either (for the record)… and I imagined limited involvement in Iraq. I do not want any OWS freak posting on this blog about me being some kind of hawkish Neo Con or anything like that. I will repeat it again. I am against attacking Syria. This is stupid.