Watching events in Syria, it is easy for the viewing public to fall into the same trap as they did with Kosovo and Libya where the story was of a Government sending it's troops to slaughter civilians at will.
The result was we went in, dropped our bombs and removed the brutal tyrant before handing over the country to the group of rebels who we had sided with. Turned out the rebels were just as bad, if not worse, then the people we removed and they had successfully played the game of tweaking the tail of the government and then screaming loudly at the retaliation and gaining NATO support.
Now the Syrian rebels are playing the very same game and once again we are willingly falling for it.
The rebels beckoning us over this time are called the Free Syrian Army and are by no means a rag-bag mob of civilians, rather they are heavily armed and shelling pro-Government towns anc cities of Syria.
In December, two suicide bombers killed over 30 civilians in Damascus, another 26 people were victims of a January car bombing in al-Midan and a mortar attack on a pro-government rally in Homs days later killed a French journalist amongst seven others.
The Arab League observers reported on attacks carried out by opposition forces including: 'the bombing of buildings, trains carrying fuel, vehicles carrying diesel oil and explosions targeting the police, members of the media and fuel pipelines. Some of those attacks have been carried out by the Free Syrian Army and some by other armed opposition groups.'
Now a resolution condemning the violent crackdown in Syria has been vetoed at the UN Security Council by Russia and China, a move that the US ambassador to the UN, Susan Rice, called 'shameful'.
Russia and China will be painted as the bad guys but if we wheel back a few months we see the whole story of this UN resolution.
It was Russia and China who proposed the initial resolution, condemning the violence 'by all parties, including disproportionate use of force by Syrian authorities' and offered to hold talks in Moscow between the Syrian authorities and the opposition which the Syrian Government agree to but was dismissed out of hand by the opposition.
Western diplomats then drafted a competing resolution which only condemned violence by the Government, stated that Assad must step down from power and did not rule out military intervention. Russia indicated that it would not agree to the draft in its current form, citing Libya as a case where western powers perverted the agreed UN resolution, and said that it would continue to promote its own resolution in the Security Council.
China said that the western resolution 'will not help resolve the Syrian issue' and Russia called the resolution 'unbalanced' and 'undermines the opportunity for a political settlement'.
The argument that Russia is only looking after it's own interests is a valid one, it has a naval base in Syria for its Mediterranean fleet, but as America has shown many times before, they have no problem vetoing resolutions when it is Palestinian bodies piling up courtesy of Israeli brutality.
The truth is this is a civil war between heavily armed Government troops and heavily armed rebels and Russia and China are offering a political solution while America, the UK and France are offering a military one and yet another bout of regime change and i know which one is preferable and Russia and China should be commended for bringing a halt to a decade of western propaganda, warmongering and meddling in the Middle East.