"The US$10 billion, 6,000 kilometer pipeline is set to start in Iran's South Pars gas field (the largest in the world, shared with Qatar), and run via Iraq, Syria and ultimately to Lebanon. Then it could go under the Mediterranean to Greece and beyond; be linked to the Arab gas pipeline; or both.
Before the end of August, three working groups will be discussing the complex technical, financial and legal aspects involved. Once finance is secured – and that's far from certain, considering the proxy war in Syria – the pipeline could be online by 2018. Tehran hopes that the final agreement will be signed before the end of the year.
Tehran's working assumption is that it will be able to export 250 million cubic meters of gas a day by 2016. When finished, the pipeline will be able to pump 100 million cubic meters a day. For the moment, Iraq needs up to 15 million cubic meters a day. By 2020, Syria will need up to 20 million cubic meters, and Lebanon up to 7 million cubic meters. That still leaves a lot of gas to be exported to European customers.
Europeans – who endlessly carp about being hostages of Gazprom – should be rejoicing. Instead, once again they shot themselves in their Bally-clad feet." Pepe Escobar
"The costliest and riskiest U.S. option is direct intervention. To be truly effective, this would require a “no-fly zone” over all of Syria, covering all air and helicopter movement. The United States could, however, begin with arms transfers that would have a far greater chance of success if they included man-portable surface-to-air missiles and antitank guided weapons. U.S. officials could make clear that either the rebels will succeed with such weapons, leading to a negotiated departure of Assad’s government and the installation of a new national government, or the United States will join with allies in creating a no-fly zone.
No one is advocating a serious U.S. air campaign, with substantial money committed and probably significant U.S. air casualties.
If Cordesman believes that a process of creating a no-fly zone in Syria could be done in such a way that the US would not soon end up fighting the Syrian government and an unknown number of other opponents, he is wrong. General Dempsey sees that clearly and has told the senate and the president that the risks are uacceptable. Have we forgotten that Russia is "in the mix?"
Israel is not pleased that our obstinacy over Syria has caused them difficulty in their normally prodective relations with Russia.
Syria, Iraq and Iran are going to build a pipleine to a Syrian port for Iranian gas. Think about that. pl