Free Markets, Free People

How do you ask a man to be the first to die for a mistake?

That, of course is exactly what Obama and, ironically, Kerry, are going to ask US servicemen and women to risk for their tattered “credibility”.

And is this the side we’re interested in backing?

The Syrian rebels posed casually, standing over their prisoners with firearms pointed down at the shirtless and terrified men.

The prisoners, seven in all, were captured Syrian soldiers. Five were trussed, their backs marked with red welts. They kept their faces pressed to the dirt as the rebels’ commander recited a bitter revolutionary verse.

“For fifty years, they are companions to corruption,” he said. “We swear to the Lord of the Throne, that this is our oath: We will take revenge.”

The moment the poem ended, the commander, known as “the Uncle,” fired a bullet into the back of the first prisoner’s head. His gunmen followed suit, promptly killing all the men at their feet.

This scene, documented in a video smuggled out of Syria a few days ago by a former rebel who grew disgusted by the killings, offers a dark insight into how many rebels have adopted some of the same brutal and ruthless tactics as the regime they are trying to overthrow.

Those sorts of executions are tantamount to murder.  I’m not saying that Syrian forces are any better, but to pretend that we’re helping out a side which is at all friendly to us or not packed to the rafters with murderous Islamic extremists is to simply blind one’s self to reality.  And one has to wonder why alleged death by chemical weapons is somehow more atrocious or horrific than these murders?  No “red line” here, huh?

Much of the concern among American officials has focused on two groups that acknowledge ties to Al Qaeda. These groups — the Nusra Front and the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria — have attracted foreign jihadis, used terrorist tactics and vowed to create a society in Syria ruled by their severe interpretation of Islamic law.

They have established a firm presence in parts of Aleppo and Idlib Provinces and in the northern provincial capital of Raqqa and in Deir al-Zour, to the east on the Iraqi border.

While the jihadis claim to be superior fighters, and have collaborated with secular Syrian rebels, some analysts and diplomats also note that they can appear less focused on toppling President Bashar al-Assad. Instead, they said, they focus more on establishing a zone of influence spanning Iraq’s Anbar Province and the desert eastern areas of Syria, and eventually establishing an Islamic territory under their administration.

Other areas are under more secular control, including the suburbs of Damascus. In East Ghouta, for example, the suburbs east of the capital where the chemical attack took place, jihadis are not dominant, according to people who live and work there.

While many have deridingly called our potential effort there as acting as “al Queda’s air force”, that does, in fact, hold some truth.  There is a well-organized effort among the rebels by Islamists to co-opt the effort if it is successful and turn Syria into an extremist Islamic state.  And we want to help that effort?  Why?

And while the United States has said it seeks policies that would strengthen secular rebels and isolate extremists, the dynamic on the ground, as seen in the execution video from Idlib and in a spate of other documented crimes, is more complicated than a contest between secular and religious groups.

What nonsense.  Why in the world would anyone believe that the incompetent crew that makes up this administration has any possibility of actually being able to accomplish that? One only has to survey the shipwreck that is this nation’s foreign policy under Captain “Red Line” and it is clear that they could no more make that happen than understand that ego shouldn’t drive the use of the US military.

But it apparently is going too. The siren song of “save our president” is being wailed within the Congress and the usual party hacks appear to be lining up to put the men and women of the military in harm’s way because Obama shot his mouth off before doing the very basic work necessary to ensure he could back his words up and now Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines are going to be asked to pull his fat out of a fire of his own making.

But back to our “leaders”:

Chris Matthews of MSNBC, who served on Capitol Hill for years as a top Democratic aide, put the party’s dilemma in stark terms on Wednesday: “I think the Democrats are going to be forced to sacrifice men and women who really, really don’t want to vote for this. They’re going to have to vote for it to save the president’s hide. That’s a bad position to put your party in.”

“Sacrifice” men and women.  What a freaking insult.  Matthews likens a political act to a “sacrifice”.  Give it a rest you buffoon. He’s apparently more than willing to risk the sacrifice of military lives in order to “save the president’s hide”.

And make no mistake, even a partisan hack like Matthews knows this is a crisis of the president’s own making.  And why are they willing to go along?  Not because Syria has any compelling national interest to the United States or that it poses an imminent threat to the country.  Nope.  It’s pure politics:

The Obama administration’s efforts to get Congress to pass an authorization for military force against Syria are going badly in policy terms, but they are looking up in political terms. Even as the administration’s arguments become more strained, the political imperative that Democrats must support their president or risk having him “crippled” for the next 40 months is being drilled into them.

That’s it.  Take us to war instead of face the political consequences of Obama’s self-inflicted wound.  Apparently there’s much more at stake than a few military lives.  /sarc

These are the people who you want leading you?



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84 Responses to How do you ask a man to be the first to die for a mistake?

  • You’re sound as over the top as the anti-Bush far left back in 2003.   I have to laugh.  You really hate Obama, just as the left really hated Bush.  You’re convinced everything is his fault, just as the left blamed Bush or Reagan.  But just watch, I guarantee you, that Obama will be remembered up there probably above Reagan.   He’s leading the country in a time of a difficult transition, having taken over when the economy was near total collapse (I give Bush credit for working to prevent total collapse with TARP), and the country’s global reputation at its lowest ebb in over a century.  We’ve come a long way on both fronts.  Yes, the Arab world’s transition is difficult, but to “blame America first” and use everything as an excuse to attack Obama is weak minded and emotion-driven.  You’ve lost your sense of objective reason due to your complete dislike of our President.  But the left often did the same with Bush.  So lash out at Obama, call names, etc.  I just can’t take it seriously – and I think you need to take a breath and examine whether you’re really looking at all perspectives or simply reacting emotionally.   Just trying to help you think clearly, McQ.  The semester is underway here and I have a public talk on the coast this weekend, so I have no more time to comment for awhile.  Thanks everyone for the conversation, take care!

    • Wow, Erp.  Do you EVER really read anything that does not come out of your moonbattery…???
      Have you NEVER had any ability to think critically, or did you lose it somewhere?
      McQ raised MANY rational points in support of his thesis that any Obamic adventurism in Syria is predicated on mistake…or mistakes.  You just ignored them all, and went on your ad hominem about “hating Obama”.  Again!
      Showing, again, you are nothing more than a Collectivist tool, and a liar.

    • So what was that? I drive-by Erb-ing?? Basically:
      F you McQ and your concerns. Everyone look at me! Me! ME!
      Got to go and pretend to work, so don’t you cavemen try and respond because you keep pwning me.
      So there!

    • Allahu Akhbar!
      Oh please Professor Asshat, please please be a man of your word,  “HAVE NO MORE TIME TO COMMENT FOR AWHILE.”
      Allahu Akhbar!

    • Thanks everyone for the conversation, take care!

      What conversation? You posted the same mostly meaningless/delusional drivel in three or four different threads, ignored every attempt by others to show you how stupid it was, lied through your teeth in responses, and generally got your attention fix by irritating other people for four days.
      And here you are back again, posting the same ridiculous, generic stuff about how everyone hates Obama and it warps their minds, and asserting ridiculous moral equivalence to the frothing hatred the left spewed about Bush. All while ignoring anything and everything that suggests the errors and problems that everyone from Charlie Rangel to Rand Paul can see.
      If you were just stupid, that wouldn’t bother me that much – people can’t help being stupid. If you were just arrogant, I could take it if you contributed something valuable to read and think about. It’s the toxic combination of stupidity, arrogance, and the psychological need to needle and irritate other people that makes you someone truly worthy of despising.
      And the Howdy Doody manner you put on doesn’t make it better, it makes it worse.

      • As you know, that’s his unique way of saying, “I’ve got nuthin'”.

      • Well said. The guy basically posts the same content-free graffiti over and over again. I would not stand for it any more than I’d let a guy tag-up the side of my house, but ownership here can do what they want with their site. Most of the sites I frequent are well-moderated and commentators who do nothing but trash the host the way Erb does are squashed and rarely return.  Consequently, discourse is substantially elevated.

      • The one on the last thread was just “phone-it-in” trolling.
        Weak.  Just pitifully weak.

    • Do you ALWAYS have to come off as an eight year-old?

  • Oh Erb, we finally agree! Obama will be LOOOOOONG remembered, I guarantee that

  • Folks, have we considered the option that Erb is  commenting here as an ongoing class project, in all likelihood to make some esoteric poly sci point about the state of political discussion, political dissent responses, etc etc etc.

    It has nothing to do with this blog nor with the opinions posted here.

    In all likelihood he’s making the exact opposite comments on some liberal blog as well.

    It’s a poly sci realtime experiment.

    Answering him is only allowing him to use this site to make his point to his classes/research.

    Don’t take the bait.

    • If that was the case, why would he be upfront about being a prof?

      Further, his posts typically lack specifics and substance. If he had a research agenda I would think he covered it long ago, at least on the “responses to weak arguments” front, and would have moved on to something with more substance.

    • Answering him is only allowing him to use this site to make his point to his classes/research.
      Don’t take the bait.

      Let him use this site.  Hopefully, some people will be curious enough to peruse the comment sections and see what he writes.  Hopefully some of his students will follow the links about his pizza thievery, see how he changed the details in each revision (lied), and conclude that it’s not too late to drop his class and take something else.

    • It’s certainly possible that he thinks he’s doing some kind of research. If true, he’s a horrible, incompetent researcher.
      He has a long history here. Therefore, if he is attempting research, everything he is getting from us is contaminated by expectation effects (sometimes called the subject-expectancy effect) based on earlier visits.
      Also, when doing research on social interactions in real-world contexts, announcing that one is doing research is foolish. Again, it contaminates results.
      If he were doing research, and wanted to do it properly, he would use pseudonyms, and do it in new places with which he has not participated in the past. Even with a pseudonym, trying to understand and interpret the results from a place where he has extensive history runs up against his own expectation effects.
      Now, you may still be right, and he intends to use material here in his “research”, perhaps because he can push the limits without being banned (not true on most political sites). If so, we can add “incompetent researcher” to the long list of things we know about the man.

    • This is absolutely no different than he’s been in the last 20 years.  It’s a rerun.  Besides he’s not bright enough to design that sort of experiment and to control for the biases and other variables.

      • Precisely. Don’t attribute to malice what can be explained by incompetence. If he was a true scholar his research over the past 20 years would stand for itself. As it is, the only evidence of “research” points to a level of output that could be achieved by a part-time amateur researching and writing in their spare time. His publication record is shockingly sparse. And, as noted, literal decades of history as attested to by yourself McQ and others who have repeatedly come across him point to some weird obsessions and a complex about not being all that bright. Myself I find his “thoughts” on physics/science to be utterly cringeworthy and it is stunning he even has the testicular fortitude to suggest that his self-serving fantasies on the topic are in any way remotely realistic.

      • Word…!!!

  • Obama is a great campaigner, a fair bureaucrat, but a absolutely object failure as a politician.
    He couldn’t negotiate his way out of a brown paper bag using both hands.

    • AND an abject failure in virtually every arena…!!!

      • I thought this attack would have been over by now, but it’s changed daily. … Yesterday in the meeting, he said this was going to be a very limited response, but a very powerful response. I don’t know how you equate those two things. … Yesterday, the president had been the one that drew the red line. Now, today, I guess he says he didn’t draw the red line. I’m a little befuddled. … I told him yesterday, he needs to go to the American people. He’s the one that’s elected by everybody. He needs to look in the camera, look them right in the eye, and tell them how he made the decision. That didn’t sit too well with him. He said, ‘You know, it’s not just the president, you guys have to go out and basically sell it, too, it’s more than just the president.’ But then, I talked to him about, ‘you need to tell them how you made the decision. They need to understand. You’re the one that has all the facts, all the information, and they need to understand how you came to this decision.’ That bothered him a little bit, too. — Buck McKeon (CA-25)

        What’s plainly obvious is that Obama is really, really afraid to actually take responsibility for any thing to the point of hypengyophobia.

        • The buck never stops with President Hamlet.

          • The world is looking. We’re about to elect a brilliant 47-year-old president of the United States of America. Remember I said it standing here if you don’t remember anything else I said. Watch, we’re gonna have an international crisis, a generated crisis, to test the mettle of this guy. — Joe Biden
            “‘steel in his spine.” — Joe Biden

          • “… miraculously, the first time in history, steel was melted by fire. It is physically impossible.” — Rosie O’Donnell

          • You’re only saying that because you don’t put 8 hours a day in in the I-Beam mines.   If you had to blast 40 foot I beams out of the ground and then get em loaded up for transport, you wouldn’t mock Rosey.

        • Sounds like even Pizza Hood was a better manager than Obama is. I mean, really..

        • Why should we wait 10 or 20 years to start blaming this or the next President.
          Why not begin now ?

      • Oh wait, he’s realized he might have to take this one seriously.   Stand back, prepare for a conversation about getting wee-weed up.

        • Good news, at least.  It’s insult to injury with all the traffic snarls whenever he flies in to raise money from the Hollywood jews.

    • If by ‘great’ you mean possess the ability to walk into a room and let people assume great things about him.
      I’ve read his speeches, seen his actions, they aren’t great.   The only greatness the man possess is in the mind of his sycophantic beholders.

      • I have to admit, in all honesty, that watching Obama speechify is not a great experience. I know he is supposed to be a wonderful orator, but his style of speaking really just annoys me. All… the… deep… pauses… to say… what could have been freaking said in 1/3 of the time. And then just the feeling that he’s about to walk away from the podium and do something else. There are far better speakers than Obama, that is for sure.

        • He learned oration by practicing Captain James T. Kirk soliloquies.

          • So Obama vs Gorn… Who gets smacked down?

          • Obama.
            First he’ll build a Strawman George Bush and try to tell the Gorn that whatever he’s angry about, Obama didn’t do it.
            If he survives that encounter he’ll head into the jungle, where he’ll come across some weed, get stoned, wait for the Choom bridge team to beam down and save him, search for apples when he gets the munchies and get whacked by the Gorn.

      • I meant in the same fashion as Svengali

  • Kerry responds to Russian comments accusing him of lying by pointing out that his dad can beat up Putin’s dad.
    “Jen Psaki (SAH’-kee) is a department spokeswoman. She says Kerry is a decorated combat veteran of the Vietnam war and has had more than words aimed at him.”     wooooooo scary.
    Can we get a press on the Reset button again please?   Hello?

    • It wasn’t just lying .. it was lying … beatifully

    • Jeez, Kerry is even a fake Irishman.
      That is really just pathetic.  He wanted to be a Kennedy SOOOOOooooooo bad.  That’s why he took his own movie camera to the Swift Boats with him.  He laying down the advance work for his own PT-109.

      • If Putin was going to accuse someone of lying, you’d think he’d have hit on Hagel with his testimony that the Russians were supplying the chemical weapons to Syria.  Which had to be walked back by the Pentagon to say they supply stuff that COULD be used to make chemical weapons.
        I understand Target will sell you bleach and drain cleaner, clearly we need to take these bastards out with a cruise missile strike before they can launch a gas attack.

  • “Frankly, if we weren’t talking about the need for an international response right now, this wouldn’t be what everybody would be asking about,” said Obama at a press conference this morning. “You know, there would be some resolutions that were being proffered in the United Nations and the usual hocus pocus, but the world and the country would have moved on.
    Pres. Red Line

    Ewww…  Now he’s dissing the UN.  What next…???

    • Hissy fit.  We’re forcing baby into the corner!   No one puts baby in the corner!
      Heh, the usual hocus pocus.   Right.   Tells you what he really thought of the UN all along don’t it.

      • That (cough, cough) COWBOY BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOooooooooooooooosh is looking like a paragon of respect for international law and consensus-building in a pragmatic moderate sorta way, huh…???
        Always fun to compare and contrast what Collectivists SAY v. WHAT THEY DO.

    • and NOW he’s discovered that the UN is kind of an obstructionist organization .
      If we end up using the UN Security Council not as a means of enforcing international norms and international law, but rather as a barrier to acting on behalf of international norms and international law, then I think people rightly are going to be pretty skeptical about the system and whether it can work to protect those children we saw in those videos,”
      Talk about acting stoned for most of his adult life…..

  • How do you ask a man to be the first to die for a mistake?
    The Secret Service does this every day.

  • Now Kerry is talking this up as a regime change mission. Guess he thinks we have to install the rebels in charge to find out who’s in them

  • MSNBC executive editor Richard Wolffe slammed President Obama for having yet to give a clear rationale for military intervention in Syria. “I do think that the president’s press conference today was actually embarrassing,” Wolffe said today. “It was as muddled and unconvincing as you could possibly imagine.”
    “If you want to take a country to a difficult place, which is this authorization for war, you have to be much more clear and convincing about what the rationale is,” he continued. He bashed the administration for continuing to push a “fundamentally mixed,” contradictory case to Congress: “What they’re saying all the time is, ‘This a small thing, it’s a small thing, it’s really a small thing, but we’re asking you to do a big thing, which is to vote on it.’”
    Hey, Erp…
    Ain’t it a bad thing when Pres. Red Line has lost bsNBC…???
    And when people note there is “mission creep” around this whole Syria thing, are they referring to Obama, Kerry, or Hagel…???

  • Must be confusing to be in Al-Queda.
    If you’re in Al-Queda in Somalia, we’re trying to kill you with drone launched Hellfires.
    If you’re in Al-Queda in Syria, we’re giving you laser designators, frequencies to call in air-strikes, and hot lunches.

    Obama promises not to analogize to WWII, then does…

    • And we entered WWII during the London Blitz in 1940?
      And the British are…..Al Queda?
      And if all that isn’t an analogy….would it be a NOT further analogy to show that Lend-Lease corresponds exactly to the $billon we’ve already spent to train the Syrian rebels?
      I’ll bet ALL of us missed the history class that discussed how the Americans launched attacks on Germany during 1940 because the Germans were bombing London.
      You’d think a guy who was born in Hawaii would know when America entered the 2nd World War.

      • Oh. that’s right he said it was NOT an analogy.   Right.   My bad.

      • Ah, THAT’S the beauty of Quantum History…

      • Had to appeal to what he thinks America perceives as a ‘good’ war to give us the correct image.
        Like the Syrian rebels are the Western Allies, and Assad is Hitler/Tojo/Benny the Moose?
        No, if Assad is Hitler, than the Syrian rebels are Stalin.    Flip that, just so we don’t offend Putin.

      • He prolly doesn’t want to mention Pearl Harbor since he has seen that image doing the rounds wherein the Japanese claim that it wasn’t an act of war, just a limited strike with no boots on the ground.

  • Thousands may have died in a North Korean gulag. When’s the air strike?

    • Hell, the number from starvation could be in the millions.
      And we know millions were killed with machetes in Africa over the last few decades.

    • Did the world draw a red-line on gulags?   Machetes massacres?
      If the world draws a red-line on flying into other countries with drones and blowing people apart from the air, will we join a coalition of the willing to strike the country that does that?
      Hrmmmm…can Al Queda get a pass by claiming their camps in Somalia are training troops to fight in Syria?   soooooooo confusing…….

  • I do think troublesome Republican politicians should start talking about supporting an authorization for the use of force in the Congolese civil war.  It had cooled down but not ended, and may or may not be the deadliest war in world history.  Depending on range of estimates, it very likely exceeds the total casualties by all parties in WWII, and is either just above or just below the Chinese Civil war. 

    Make democrats argue why we should intervene in Syria but not in Congo. 

    Another troublesome pol should speak on the floor of the house or senate, and quote the full ‘oppose dumb war’ speech President Present made about Iraq  and only change Iraq to Syria and Saddam to Assad.  S

    Someone else should ask one of the Executive branch irrelevancies sent to explain their personal policy on supporting or opposing war against ‘bad guy’ middle eastern dictators who are members of the Ba’ath party who have used chemical weapons against their own people.

  • Having not read any of the comments, i’ll risk thrusting foot in mouth.
    If we had an honest media, they would be thrusting Kerry Obama Powers Rice et al previous statements right back at them.  But then we dont have an honest media.
    But in fact, how can we except an honest media when we dont have an honest electorate.  All those shill voices railing against McChimpyBushitler are unsurprisingly silent now that Obama is President.  Principals were never the issue, partisan politics have.
    What is of issue, the driving issue in fact, is who we chose to lead.  Woodrow Willson is Barack Obama’s nom de plume.  Smarty-pants college intellectual with out a whit of real world experience.  And ooh how they like to drone on… and on… and on.  So convinced of their own brilliance (must be so – first non-published editor of Harvard’s Law Review) that they are willing to blunder a nation to ruination in a vain quest.
    I AM SO MUCH SMARTER THAT EVERYONE ELSE.  and the media eat it up, regurgitate, and claim it is the cloth of Turin.
    I am so looking forward to shoving all the bullsh-t – hypocrisy- my lefty friends tried to dish out 2000 to 2008. Fluffers they are, and the intellectually honest ones are really going to hate it.

  • Samantha Power, the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, hoped that a team of UN investigators — many of whom, presumably, have a longstanding relationship with Iranian leaders — could write a report that would convince Iran to abandon its ally at the behest of the United States.
    “We worked with the UN to create a group of inspectors and then worked for more than six months to get them access to the country on the logic that perhaps the presence of an investigative team in the country might deter future attacks,” Power said at the Center for American Progress as she made the case for intervening in Syria.
    “Or, if not, at a minimum, we thought perhaps a shared evidentiary base could convince Russia or Iran — itself a victim of Saddam Hussein’s monstrous chemical weapons attacks in 1987-1988 — to cast loose a regime that was gassing it’s people,” she said.
    That level of voluntary STUPID will get a lot of people killed.
    Collectivists live in a cloud of delusion. That is very, very dangerous.

    • Yes, the problem is these people like Iran, just don’ t understand!   If we collect a group of people who are in favor of our version of Mom, PoP, Fluffy the dog and (our version of) the American way, and have them tour Syria and write a book report, all those leaders in Iran and Russia will see the error of their ways.
      Those sad leaders, they’re just deluded about who they’re supporting!   If we do a book report they’ll see the true nature of Assad!   Because we know that the Russians and Iranians leaders want to be just like the good old US of A.

  • You don’t ASK a man, you ORDER him. It’s his duty to the collective and the ObamaFurher, CinC of the Armee and the ObamaJugen…

  • The Syrian rebels posed casually, standing over their prisoners with firearms pointed down at the shirtless and terrified men.

    I wonder if they were terrified when the killed that first 100,000 of their citizens?
    That reminds me of the picture from Vietnam, with the guy shooting the prisoner in the head, the picture snapped at the moment the gun was fired. If one doesn’t know the context, the guy firing into the prisoners head is the chief of Police in Saigon, and the guy making a repository for the bullet is a VC terrorist who killed the chief’s wife and four kids. He got of lucky; if it were me, I’d shot him in the balls and let him writhe on the ground for an hour or two before finishing it.