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The "unlikely" war with Syria...


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I don't know what all the fuss is about wrt how plausible the scenario might be.

The fact is that there is a 100% chance in 2007 of a US led UN coalition invading Syria. It will happen because thats what will be written on the game box.

If I buy the game it will be "US, blah blah, Syrian Coup, blah blah." Show me the tanks and the earth-shattering kabooms!

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As to your obvious disappointment to the reactions of many of your loyal customers, have you forgotten why you had to shut down the GF?
Who said I am surprised? When we picked this setting 2.5 years ago we knew this would happen. The setting not being at all relevant. The reason being that it isn't WWII. As for the GF... it was on its last legs anyway. We actually created it with great apprehension in the first place and threatened to shut it down several times before 9/11. That just pushed it off the cliff.

They are not the #1 sponsor?!?!? The money comes from Saudi Arabia and other RICH Arab countries. Afghanisatan was just the uncontrolled outpost of the world where they decidede to setup their HQ.
Yeah, but it was their HQ. I don't know of many military strikes on banks and influential people with money. So yes, the country that supports and offers sanctuary for some of the most active terrorist groups is in fact the #1 sponsor. As for #1 funder... I'd go along with Saudi Arabia for sure.

I think you are wayyyyy out of line here. You guys, the creator of our coolest of cool game, should keep FAR from politics.
You are bringing politics into this, not us. We just outlined the most likely future conflict worthy of simulating. But since war can not exist without politics, of course there is a political element to it. But that doesn't necessarily mean we agree with it. I'm actual anti-war when you boil me right down to my core beliefs, but here I am making wargames. I'm sure most people here are more peacenicks than warmongers, yet here they are too. Don't be so quick to cast judgement on people's principles based on their superficial interests.

I think it is dangerous for software vendors to go along with the Bush hype: Syria axis of evil kinda thing.
Ah, so Syria is a really nice place ruled by really nice people who don't have anything to do with Terrorism and ill intentions towards its neighbors? Bush might be wrong about a lot of things (if you have a couple of weeks I might be able to list them all), but the fact that Syria is a despotic terrorist state with bases for external terrorist groups is not anything a sane person would try to debate. Syria has been on much of the world's "crap list" for several decades, and unfortunately it doesn't look like it is getting any better (probably getting worse).

Now, I've already sounded off about rewriting history. It is absolutely nothing we are interested in. Any future scenario, no matter how far fetched it might be, is more realistic than trying to simulate something that never happened. We aren't making a political statement with the choice of subject matter, so there is no reason to be politically correct about it. We feel that of the handful of likely scenarios to set CM in Syria is the one that best fits the bill, with Iran coming a close second. Those of you who disagree have yet to demonstrate why this isn't the case, except to say "I don't like it because it won't be fun".

I also think that the chances of US involvement in a "Stan" (former Soviet State) really doesn't understand Russians very well. "Over their dead bodies" is a pretty good indication of what it would take to let US troops actively participate in an action on their home turf (as they see it, anyway). Look how freaked out they got about former Soviet States joining up with the EU and NATO. The only reason why they didn't react more strongly to this is because they can't. They lack the financial, economic, political, and military capacity to do anything more than complain. But kick up a fight on their doorstep... well, then... you might see them try a lot harder. And nobody, not even warmongering US of A, wants that to happen. Nothing could be worth getting into an open conflict with Russia, even if Russia is the cause of the problem (note the West's indifference to Chechnya if you doubt me).

Steve

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Ardem,

You don't live here, I do, I think I am able to guage public opinion here better then you.
Sure, but who is talking about Australian public opinion? But let's just for the sake of argument. Since you are either incapable of unwilling to use your imagination, let me help you out a bit...

Let us say that a dirty bomb goes of in Sydney. Another one goes off in Washington, and yet another one in London. Say these bombings are linked to a single organization, or several, that has sanctuary in a country already on the fringes of world society. Do you think that the public opinion polls and election status of those countries 5 minutes before the bombings took place would be relevant? Or do you think the people of those countries, and those who are affected by the same threat, will look at the outdated polls and say to themselves "well, they didn't want war before so I'm sure they still don't now". That is apparently what you are saying will happen... no action, no matter what the condition. Or do you offer up another possible reaction to some sort of direct threat/attack linked to a host nation state?

The bad PR about WMD linger in each other countries minds and we feel duped and silly, and the general poplus felt it was about Oil and US interests
And yet again you confuse Afghanistan with Iraq. There was no ambiguity or post war "oops, we got the wrong guy" situation in Afghanistan. Iraq is another story.

As the US people who think they know what public world opinion is and never lived in the countries you speaking up for, you just making yourself sound silly.
I think I have a lot better handle on how nations react to challenges to their power and security than you do. Your thinking is akin to claiming to know how a sports team will perform a year from now based on what the bookies are saying about a single game and some scandals involving prostitutes and fist fights by key players. I'm saying that given a few hypothetical, and plausible, changes to the next season, things might turn out radically different than you are predicting. I could be wrong, but if I am a sports fanatic who has even gone to school to study sports... perhaps you shouldn't be so quick to dismiss the guesswork. Especially when you apparently haven't.

Steve

[ October 10, 2005, 09:44 PM: Message edited by: Battlefront.com ]

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Originally posted by Battlefront.com:

Let us say that a dirty bomb goes of in Sydney. Another one goes off in Washington, and yet another one in London. Say these bombings are linked to a single organization, or several, that has sanctuary in a country already on the fringes of world society. Do you think that the public opinion polls and election status of those countries 5 minutes before the bombings took place would be relevant? Or do you think the people of those countries, and those who are affected by the same threat, will look at the outdated polls and say to themselves "well, they didn't want war before so I'm sure they still don't now". That is apparently what you are saying will happen... no action, no matter what the condition. Or do you offer up another possible reaction to some sort of direct threat/attack linked to a host nation state?

I take your point, but it really depends if the country was responsible in the same way that Iraq was responsible for 9/11.

I don't think the people of the civilised world are that gullible and bloodthirsty just at the moment. Do you turn the other cheek? Seems like it could have a better result than going on a latter-day crusade in response.

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I take your point, but it really depends if the country was responsible in the same way that Iraq was responsible for 9/11.
Oh, for sure. If there was no host nation (which is the frigthening direction the terrorists are moving towards) then there would be nobody to strike back at. Likewise, if the terrorists clearly weren't in Country X and that was the one that a couple of countries pointed to, I doubt world opinion would allow another bad intel attack situation. But that wasn't my example.

My example, as I have been saying since the beginning, is Afghanistan, not Iraq. Afghanistan was an open and shut case. Nobody argues that there was an attack that needed to be responded to and that attack (along with others too) had orignated in Afghanistan. Direct, clear link. Iraq... well, take the Afghanistan case, turn it upside down, punt it across the room, then go over and stomp on a it a few times, then dress it up a bit and then compare it to the Afghanistan one again. Not at all similar :D

What I find people like Ardem arguing about is an Iraq scenario not being possible in the near future. I'd disagree only to say I don't see it happening even 10 years further out. The Iraq war uncovered a lot of bareknucked Realpolitik disguised as something it most certainly was not. For a while people will remember this and it will be tough to get another one pushed through like that again. But an Afghanistan type situation... no comparision. Ardem and some others keep jumpping back to Iraq even though I keep pointing them to Afghanistan. The reason? They can't argue another Afghanistan isn't plausible. Under the right circumstances another one could happen tomorrow, Iraq quagmire or not.

Steve

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Grr. I just lost a long and awesome post!

Anyway, in brief, I agree with you about the Afghanistan thing, but I would suggest that your back-story not be too focussed on a terrorism event, if that's what you are suggesting. We hear quite enough about terrorism without being reminded in our leisure time too!

The UN exists to prevent aggression between nation-states, and this seems to be the only time it every reaches true consensus.

I think the most plausible scenario is: Syrian coup leads to Syrian invasion of a newly westernised Lebanon. In part to prevent Israel doing something drastic, the UN assembles an invasion force...

Simple, plausible and not overly political.

Oh, its not exactly my idea BTW:

Originally posted by junk2drive:

After a full withdrawal from Lebanon a defiant Syria decides once again to occupy it's neighbor.

In order to prevent further escalation of violence in the region, the USA mounts a full scale attack.

This battle depicts an amphibious landing at a port, driving North into enemy held territory.

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I don't really want to get into this debate, but as a side issue, I think you could argue a smaller role for the US, simply on the basis of resources. So it would be nice if there are frequently other nations providing support for your Strykers IMO. Of course that would mean that BFC would have to provide many times more units, and that would be against their new policy of smaller games.

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I think the US/Syria thing might be kinda interesting. Some good stuff on both sides to play with, and depending on how the story is written, could be fun.

However Steve, I'm not that hooked on realism that I gotta have the Syrians (I was really hoping for the Yemenis :D ), just need the Boom Boom Toys. And since you're going to have to stack the deck in the scenario anyway, which kinda tosses the realism argument out the window…

So, seeing the political debate it's inevitably kicked off, why didn't you go with the old Unspecified Middle East Country or a Red vs Blue type matchup? Or here's an idea, perhaps a NTC simulator. Got your marketing half done for you there and all the goodies and add-ons you could ever want.

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"You guys might find this funny but deep down I am a "why can't we all just get along" kind of guy."

Its my understanding that most serious military historians hold a similar opinion (remember the 'Powell doctrine"?). To my mind studying warfare and military history is akin to medical researchers studying the progress of a disease through a population. You may find the little bugger fascinating to watch but the closer you look the less you want to catch a dose of it yourself!

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To my mind studying warfare and military history is akin to medical researchers studying the progress of a disease through a population.
Or a cop or a fireman for that matter, agreed. Most of the professionals, given a choice between keeping their jobs and eliminating the need for them, would choose to find another job. At least the ones that are in it for the right reasons. The doctors that are there to enrich themselves at the expense of others, the cops that really do enjoy beating up people, and fireman that are firebugs at heart are already twisted so they don't count :D

One reason we haven't been too specific about the Syrian scenario is we are waiting to see how current events unfold. When we came up with the Syria setting there was still full, and seemingly long term, occupation of Lebanon by the Syrian Army. Now they are out and that does offer up some possibilities. Oh, and it also reinforces my comments about "don't be so sure you know the near future" train of thought through this whole debate. Who would have suspected the Syrians to pull out so suddenly after decades of thumbing their noses at everybody who demanded they leave?

Even with a stretched out, stressed out US military it would be able to muster enough forces to take the lead on a Syrian operation. It would mean some rather painful long term domestic political ramifications, but since when is domestic politics about long term thinking? If it was, OIF either wouldn't have happened or it would be over and done with already. Without getting political, I do have to say that politicians suck at seeing beyond the next poll coming out.

Anyway, since the focus of CMx2 is tactical vs. strategic none of this matters. The US could offer up a single Stryker Brigade and a single Heavy Brigade only and the player wouldn't see hide nor hair of any other Allied unit. So no matter what the storyline is, and what troops are "assigned' to fight in it, there is absolutely no need to have non-US units involved in the first release. And even if there were, we wouldn't because we simply don't have the time to do it in.

Steve

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Ah, makes you nostalgic for the cold War, doesn't it, where the Warsaw Pact was just over the hill and the world was bipolar (in both senses of the term). Nowadays there's hardly a country you can pick to invade without stepping on somebody's toes!

The 'back story' for CM Shock Force is going to be Syria but I'd bet political sensitivity is going to keep any Israeli units out of the game. Even imagining that IDF tanks might be rolling through Damscus sends shivers down my spine. I've only got the vaguest inkling on what the game's going to end up looking like but I suspect its largely going to be an Iraq game by another name.

The game's not claiming to be the grand scope of CM1, but if any Allies are included I hope an Arab friendly could be added. Including Turkey could mean M60A3s in action! There was mention of the possibility of Red-on-Red QuickBattles. That implies Syrian freedom fighters battling the coup plotters. That might take some of the appearance of 'ethnic' bashing out of the product.

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Originally posted by Battlefront.com:

So no matter what the storyline is, and what troops are "assigned' to fight in it, there is absolutely no need to have non-US units involved in the first release. And even if there were, we wouldn't because we simply don't have the time to do it in.

but you are going to allow us to re-skin the models... right? Even if we can't tweek the TO&E to make the troops act like Canadians, we can make them dress like Canadians? How about exposing the audio files so we can make them sound like Canadians too? The big salami would be to have an override directory (Kind of like NWN) so that we could use our own models in the game as well... or would that step on the toes of Module sales?
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Originally posted by Scott B:

I'd have went for Iran, North Korea, or Pakistan over Syria because I consider them more worthy opponents, but Syria's not bad as targets go, and they can hardly be considered unlikely.

Scott

Nice enemies, but all uncomfortably close to nuclear-capable. Regime change is nice, but it loses a lot of its sweetness when the price could be a thermonuclear blast in Tel Aviv, Osaka, or one of those big U.S. military installations in Iraq.
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Originally posted by Bigduke6:

Nice enemies, but all uncomfortably close to nuclear-capable. Regime change is nice, but it loses a lot of its sweetness when the price could be a thermonuclear blast in Tel Aviv, Osaka, or one of those big U.S. military installations in Iraq.

Regime change is not nice, but sometimes it is necessary. It can be especially necessary in the event of state collapse and unknown possession of nuclear weapons and technology. If you can buy a 2007 invasion of Syria, I hope it's not too much of a stretch to consider a few alternatives?

Scott

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Originally posted by Bigduke6:

</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by Scott B:

I'd have went for Iran, North Korea, or Pakistan over Syria because I consider them more worthy opponents, but Syria's not bad as targets go, and they can hardly be considered unlikely.

Scott

Nice enemies, but all uncomfortably close to nuclear-capable. Regime change is nice, but it loses a lot of its sweetness when the price could be a thermonuclear blast in Tel Aviv, Osaka, or one of those big U.S. military installations in Iraq. </font>
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Would the US defend the kurds angainst Turk... In a word No.

Post Gulf war one at the same time as the US and the UK were policing the Northern No fly zone from Turkish bases, the Turks were using those bases for opperations against the Kurds.

It's a funny old world.

As to alternatives, after we get Syria how about a Commonwealth force intervening in Zimbabwa..Module.

That would keep the Brits, Aussies, Canucks, and South Africans happy. and it would let you introduce, bush and monsoon weather.

Peter.

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Good point Ardem.

If anyone thinks that in less than 2 years time, the UK or any NATO country would support a move into Syria, then they are niaive. The UN, dont make us laff. No, this in my opinion is a thinly veiled attempt to appeal to either the US Govt (for training purposes), or the US tean 'Rag Head' killing populace. You should have called and it CM:BB (Basrah to Baghdad).

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And if anyone had been told prior to 9/11 that German troops would fight in Afghanistan they would have been declared insane.

On 18 September, the far-left party that argued for a withdrawal of German troops from Afghanistan got less than 9% of the vote. Seems that most of the voters had other concerns.

All the best

Andreas

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Steve wrote

Ah, so Syria is a really nice place ruled by really nice people who don't have anything to do with Terrorism and ill intentions towards its neighbors? Bush might be wrong about a lot of things (if you have a couple of weeks I might be able to list them all), but the fact that Syria is a despotic terrorist state with bases for external terrorist groups is not anything a sane person would try to debate. Syria has been on much of the world's "crap list" for several decades, and unfortunately it doesn't look like it is getting any better (probably getting worse).

Hold on, isnt your premise that this evil government gets overthrown and the US goes in to re-instate it. Or did I read this wrong?

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Hey, I heard after the last hurricane Mexican Army troops were on American soil for the first time since Texas was annexed! So if this Syrian theater thing doesn't work out for you we can always do-up a nice one with Mexico retaking Texas. Wouldn't have to change the desert landscape either, but you'd have to add the Golden Arches in with the buildings. ;)

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