Free Markets, Free People

Stumbling into a solution on Syria?

Yeah, not really … although the usual suspects are bound to try to spin this as a triumph of diplomacy.  Oh, it’s a “solution” (“Peace in our time”!) … but not one that accomplishes much of what the US wanted done – well, except maybe save a little face.  And for that, they’re rather glad to capitulate.

In fact, as The New Republic pointed out, Putin and Assad just played Obama … big time. They knew he was desperate for a way to climb down from his “red line” comments and so they took an absurd, off the cuff remark by Sec. State John Kerry and the administration said, “sure”.

As TNR reports it:

Speaking in London next to British Foreign Secretary William Hague on Monday, Secretary of State John Kerry said that perhaps the military strike around which the administration has been painfully circling for weeks could be avoided if Bashar al-Assad can “turn over every single bit of his chemical weapons to the international community in the next week. Turn it over, all of it, without delay, and allow a full and total accounting for that.”

The fact that Kerry immediately followed with, “But he isn’t about to do it, and it can’t be done, obviously,” didn’t seem to bother anyone. (Probably because they were focusing on his other slip-up: calling the promised strikes “unbelievably small.”)

The Russians immediately jumped on the impromptu proposal, calling Kerry to check if he was serious before going live with their proposal to lean on Syria. An hour later, they trotted out Syria’s foreign minister, Walid al-Mouallem, who said he too was down with the proposal, which was a strange way to get the Syrians to finally admit they even had chemical weapons to begin with. Before long, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon, the English, and the French were all on board, too.

As for the “truth” about this being something planned by the White House and Kerry? Too late to claim that. The White House blurted out reality:

Meanwhile, back in Washington, the White House was just as surprised as anyone. Asked if this was a White House plan that Kerry had served up in London, Deputy National Security Advisor Tony Blinken was unequivocal. “No, no, no,” he said. “We literally just heard about this as you did some hours ago.”

That would be funny if it wasn’t so sad and scary.

So how did they play the Obama administration? Remember that Kerry said they had to be under international control in a “week”? Yeah, that’s going to happen isn’t it. How about 2 years? 3?

Here’s the point … they avert any strike with their agreement knowing the international community – now that the UN is back in the game and Russia and China still have Security Council vetoes – won’t be able to move the ball for months if at all.

Again, I’ll just let TNR lay it out for you:

[Kerry] answered a hypothetical question in a hypothetical way. He blurted out a pie-in-the-sky, hyperbolic idea—getting rid of “every single bit” of the chemical weapons scattered across Syria “in the next week”—but everyone seized on it as a realistic proposal. It’s not.

First, how do you deal with a regime that only admits it has chemical weapons under the threat of impending military intervention? Or that uses chemical weapons while a team of U.N. inspectors is there to investigate the prior use of chemical weapons, in the same city?

Second, that handful of chemical weapons storage and mixing facilities are just the ones we know about, and, now that the U.S. has been loudly beating the war drum for weeks, Assad has been moving his troops and weapons around. If we thought getting to “beyond a reasonable doubt” with the intelligence on the August 21 chemical attack was hard, imagine us getting to “every single bit.”

Third, negotiating with the Russians and the Syrians about what “every single bit” and what disposing them mean will certainly take more than “the next week.” Both Moscow and Damascus have all the time in the world, and the Kremlin, which has never met a legal norm it couldn’t waltz around, will quibble and hair-split and insist that this is all done legally—whatever that means in Moscow.

Fourth, the mechanics of disposing these chemical weapons are far from straightforward. Quoth the Times: “flying [the chemical weapons] out of the country is not as simple as picking up nuclear components—as the United States did in Libya in late 2003—and moving them to a well-guarded site in Tennessee.”

Fifth, and most important, is the fact that Assad giving up his chemical weapons was only part of the stated objective. If you listened to the White House pitch closely, the point of the military strike was not just to stop Assad from using chemical weapons further on his citizens, and it was not just to warn other rogue leaders with their fingers on various triggers. Part of the goal was to force a political solution that would remove Assad from power. That is, even though the Obama administration has been insisting that it is not interested in “regime change,” that disastrous cornerstone of the Bush era, it was, in fact, pursuing regime change, at least until Monday.

Played.

Absolutely played. Oh, sure, Obama can now climb down and pretend to have implemented a real solution by claiming his threat of a strike caused this. In fact, the threat of a strike is pretty much irrelevant right now.  We’re into interminable word wars now.  By taking this up, as TNR points out, Syria now has “all the time in the world” while Russia plays its part in international negotiations. Immune now from a military strike and no real threat that anything will happen of any significance to take control of their chemical weapons any time soon.

So Assad will pursue his strategy without any implicit or explicit attempt at regime change (or deterrence, or armed intervention or …) and, as it appears the regime is getting the upper hand in the civil war, work toward ending it. Then Russia can declare the control of Syria’s chemical weapons a moot point and veto everything in sight.

Amazing.

But it is all good in the White House – they think the president’s credibility has been saved by this charade.

Seriously … they do.

So it’s back to “leading from behind.”

As it stands now, Russia and France have taken the lead on working out a plan to get Assad to hand over his chemical weapons, a lead Obama seems all too happy to relinquish. Hammering out the details will take a some time, and, while they’re at it, Assad will still have his chemical weapons but will no longer be under the threat of a U.S. military strike. (Who knows if he’ll use them, but he certainly hasn’t let up on the conventional shelling.) Putin has succeeded in throwing sand in the gears of the American political process and separating the U.S. from its allies, and the current American handwringing over Syria seems likely to grind on for weeks. And a pro-Assad paper ran with the following headline this morning: “Moscow and Damascus Pull the Rug Out From Under the Feet of Obama.”

~McQ

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52 Responses to Stumbling into a solution on Syria?

  • (Don your sarcasm goggles)
    Obama victory, you know it, admit it.   He’s the man!
     
    and now, you too can join in and help
    Kick Start WWIII because, Obama.
     

    • I found this snippet of Obama speech scheduled for tonight …

      Good evening. Tonight I had hoped to speak directly to you, the American people, as your president and commander-in-chief, about the necessity of taking military action against the Assad regime in Syria. I was going to talk all about why bombing Syria was not only a moral obligation, but also squarely in our national interests. That’s what I had planned to do when we scheduled this speech last week.

      But then, as many of you know, John Kerry sort of accidentally proposed yesterday that President Assad could avoid retribution if he agreed to give up his chemical weapons. To our surprise, Syria is into it, as is its close ally Russia. Suddenly we’re in the midst of figuring out a diplomatic solution to this crisis. Just a few hours ago, Syria declared its intention to join the international treaty banning chemical weapons, and I asked the Senate to delay a vote on military strikes. The situation is changing almost by the minute.

      So, with all that being said … I’m not totally sure what I’m supposed to say here anymore. The military strikes I was going to aggressively argue for tonight may no longer be necessary. Then again, they might be, if these diplomatic talks fall apart. We definitely need to do something about Syria, I’m just not sure what. You can see my dilemma.

      • “You can see my dilemma.”
         
        So, I’d like to invite, Bashar Al-Assad, Vladimir Putin, John Kerry and some lucky $1.00 contributor to OFA to the White House for a Beer Summit.
         

      • “Now watch this drive.”

  • Back to serious side.
    Yes, they’ll spin it as an Obama victory, all part of the plan, tut tut my boy, clever, insightful, DEFT even!
     
    And now you can see a game plan for nuclear Iran (that’s pronounced New-cue-lur).   Soviets, I uh, mean Russians of course, will offer to broker the deal if Iran develops nukes.    Inspections, collections, securing,  etc, etc.   Gonna take months, not weeks or days, any violations gonna require UN inspections, more months, etc.
     
    And the world looks at Putin and says “clever leader” and looks at Obama and says “bumbling golfer”.
    Up until now, when a US President said things they were to be taken seriously.     That actual plans weren’t the result of off the cuff smart ass remarks.   Today, all bets are off.
    The world is quite certain the emperor is a naked fool.

    • Syria is one of a few countries not to sign onto the UN convention on chemical weapons, so it’s not hard to believe they have chemical weapons.
      What is unbelievable is how Kerry backed into a solution, of sorts, without even knowing it.  Then wasn’t sure they wanted to declare victory or not.
      While the DC based media will praise Obama for his “skill”, all the national security media knows this was the biggest blunder since … the Bay of Pigs.
      While Obama’s crew of national security folks is probably now shown to be even worse than Jimmy Carter’s, it is our country in this screwing of the pooch.  At least, no US blood was shed to save Obama pride.
      There still is time to start World War III … Because Obama, from “The Americans For Whatever Barack Obama Wants, Did you know He’s Friends with Jay-Z”

    • Oh wait !!!
      From Ace:

      Russia withdraws request for UN Security Council meeting which would have debated Russia’s own plan. And Putin, testing the mettle of this Young President (?) just like Joe Biden drooled, now decides that First, You Will Blow Me.

      A pound of flesh is the price …

  • And now the countdown for Erb to jump into the discussion by telling us how brilliantly Obama has approached this issue and how all of us Neanderthals just do not understand a true genius at work in 3 . . . 2 . . . 1 . . .

  • Obama just got played by Putin and Assad.  The whole world knows it, but there’s a professor in Maine who’ll tell us this is a major foreign policy coup for Obama.

    • The word ‘deft’ will be in his comment somewhere.
       
      In reality…“I meant to do that!”
       

      • Come come, silly Looker. Do you really think that Putin and Assad, with decades of experience in handling real diplomatic and military situations, could really truly outsmart the smartest guy in the room and his sidekick who used to throw away someone else’s hard-earned medals? Putin in no way goes to bed smiling every night now, thinking of the good shafting he has given the USA over Syria, Snowden and God knows what else. This is all part of a masterful plan by Obama that wise and scholarly foreign policy experts predicted (but forgot to tell anyone about) many weeks ago.

        • It’s so masterful that I feel the need to break out into song; sing along if you like, you may know the tune.

          “Obama, Hey Bama, Bama, Bama O Bama;
            Hey Bama Obama.
          ” Hey B O B O
             You’re so smart, doncha know;
            Bama Ho Bama Hey Superstar!”

          ****Melody from “Hosanna”; Jesus Christ Superstar.

      • Fresh from the back end of the Administration….
        “WASHINGTON — The Obama Administration’s explanation of how a Russian proposal to get rid of Syrian chemical weapons came to be has morphed rapidly in the past 24 hours from being portrayed as an unexpected slip-up to — in its new incarnation — a plan that U.S. officials were involved in as early as last week.
        “I had some conversations about this with my counterpart from Russia last week,” Secretary of State John Kerry said during a House Armed Services Committee hearing on Tuesday, referring to Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. “President Putin raised the issue with President Obama at St. Petersburg. President Obama directed us to try to continue to talk and see if it is possible. So it is not something that — you know, suddenly emerged, though it did publicly. But it cannot be allowed to be a delay.”

        • Now we know why Erb has been so quiet. He claims to have been on a junket, guilt-tripping old society ladies into thinking they are the root cause of all evil since Eve gave Adam a come hither look. But really we know he has been on special assignment to the President’s office to advise on the best way of claiming credit in the face of massive foul-ups. Who else could get Obama and Kerry to perform such amazing craptastic feats of ineptitude and STILL claim they meant it this way all along?

          • “I didn’t misspeak,” Kerry said. “I was asked about it. I responded because I was asked.”
             
             

  • Obama should take away from this that his administration has to learn to keep their mouths shut till after any strike, then inform Congress and the World.
    The Obama PR machine has transformed a simple military strike into a performance of “Lady of Spain” on the accordion.

  • Somebody at state made the mistake of immediately labeling the Kerry goof a “goof”.
    This is what is known as a Kinsley gaffe…the accidental ejaculation of a true statement by a politico.
    It is being airbrushed out of history even as we speak.
    What an amazing farce…

  • Hilarious.    Putin is already playing with them.  They barely have their storyline adjustment underway about how they planned this when the Russians start changing the rules to show no such thing.   Retracting their UN security council vote request, demanding Obama agree to no military action to give Syria time to work.
     
     
    Yes, I said hilarious, because it’s all part of let it burn.
     
    Stupid should hurt, and we demonstrated stupid nationally in November of 2012.  
    He maxed the credit card bill, then demanded higher limits, then rewarded his buddies to the best of his abilities with the cash.   He screwed up foreign relations with old allies, and took a world blame tour.  He ran guns to Mexico, botched the gulf oil spill disaster cleanup, prostituted the office of the President for his own celebrity, showed up for hugs at Hurricane Sandy, destroyed oil drilling and production in the gulf and on government land, dicked the oil pipeline, sic’d the IRS and the intelligence agencies on average Americans, and then covered it up,  illegally appointed various government officers, legally appointed various thugs to head agencies, covered up Benghazi, inserted himself into various local manufactured racial incidents to remind us he’s a black President, passed a hugely destructive bill to take over a 6th of the economy and then proceeded to delay any part of it that would harm him or his party.  Unemployment a disaster, government dependency skyrocketing, Illegal immigration at an all time high and now amnesty!  Ignores and refuses  to enforce the laws he doesn’t like while he makes up new ones through executive ordered regulation.
     
    There’s more, I just can’t remember it all,  It gets difficult after a while.
     
    And as a country we still put him back in office.  The bill is due.
     

    • If a few percentage points of voters in key states acted differently, John McCain would have won.
      The alternative to Obama was McCain.
      Let that sink in.
      Many of us don’t participate in voting on basic principles, so we didn’t agree to any of these candidates or the horrors they have inflicted upon us.

  • There is a certain lovely irony in that Obama, a student of Alinsky and all the best Marxist ideas on manipulating the opposition, is completely undone by an old mid-level KGB agent.

    • I think that quaint quaint english expression about grandmothers being taught to suck eggs applies in this case.

  • The other aspect to this is geopolitical – who will the actors in the Middle East look to the next time there is an issue? Not the US! Russia and Putin! Now sit back and think for a moment about US interests in the region taking a back seat to whatever Putin and Russia’s priorities are! Issues like Egypt, Libya, Iran, the Arab Spring, ISRAEL and the Palestinians! And then take it to the next level – even the UN and the Security Council will begin to look to someone other than the US and that someone is Russia and Putin.  Yeah, Obama got played (pwned more like it) and Putin and Russia wins!!!

  • I really believe that it was Hillary Clinton who stepped in and came up with this plan! We will be avoiding war due to “The Big H’s” help! See if it doesn’t come up during the election!

  • Sharyl AttkissonVerified account ‏@SharylAttkisson

    Secy Kerry tells congress he will not honor the request to make Benghazi survivors available for questioning.

  • ODS is so strong that even when his patience and willingness to engage Congress allows us to possibly avoid the pain and cost of military action, and build a true international solution involving Russia and other countries that have held off, the far right finds a way to criticize Obama.  It proves the right can’t be taken seriously.  They don’t care about foreign policy, just attacking Obama.  When Bush pushes us into a disastrous war against Iraq they defend him and attack those who criticize Bush as not being patriotic.  But when it’s Obama going cautiously to avoid disaster, they simply can’t give him credit.  So when you attack Obama, you’re just being knee jerk ODS sufferers.  You can’t be taken seriously.  Best quote I saw (over at Politico:) “The lunatics on the right are going crazy trying to criticize Obama for getting the best possible outcome while falling over themselves to credit Putin/Assad.”   The odd thing is, I don’t think you guys see how absurd your position is!

    • The odd thing is, you completely ignore other people, news professionals, diplomats, and fuzzy furriners who also think Obama and Kerry screwed the pooch.   Articles are everywhere on the internet.   Real people….not us….and yet you can’t admit this was a result of Obama being stupid, and Kerry being stupid, and the Russians playing the hand well.
       
      Not, Just, Us.  :)
       
      Which tells me you’re, as usual, suffering from cranial rectal inversion, and confirms your own case of Obama Messiah syndrome.

    • And weren’t you just terribly terribly busy?   Your word is not worth the bits that make up your comments.

    • What? Hang on honey, I’ll be right there. I just have to troll, um, engage the guys at QandO before I have supper. It’s part of the research project I told you about.

      It’s ODS. ODS, ODS, ODS. I decree it. ODS is so strong that even when his patience and willingness to engage Congress allows us to possibly avoid the pain and cost of military action, and build a true international solution involving Russia and other countries that have held off, the far right finds a way to criticize Obama.

      And it’s just the far right that has a problem with this. I decree it in the name of quantum spirituality. Shut up about what the New Republic says, just shut up about that! Hey, I can redefine them as far right any time I want, and there’s nothing you can do about it because I have godlike powers of post-modern political science.

      It proves the right can’t be taken seriously. They don’t care about foreign policy, just attacking Obama. ODS, ODS, ODS everywhere! It’s reflexive attacking of Obama. Which is not in the least like my reflexive defense of everything Obama does. Because my motives are good and pure, and besides, Obama is just dreamy.

      What, honey? No, of course I don’t like the QandO guys more than I like you. I said I’d be right there. It’s research, I said. No, it’s not because of the cravings for attention. I told you not to say that.

      When Bush pushes us into a disastrous war against Iraq the right defends him and attacks those who criticize Bush as not being patriotic. Those warmongers. They want nothing more than to see our troops use all those fancy weapons we bought when we should have been spending it on public healthcare and education and stuff. Especially education. We professors with advanced degrees make surprisingly small salaries. Especially when we work for these small-but-high-quality colleges in the middle of nowhere. If only we had enough money and the military had to do bake sales to buy planes.

      But when it’s Obama going cautiously to avoid disaster, they simply can’t give him credit. Yes, Obama is so, so cautious, and it was too cautious to put that red line stuff out there. Was too, was too! He is such a deft manager of foreign affairs. Deft, I tell you. So deft that however things go, it will turn out that Obama planned it that way. And that it was all for the best. Bomb, don’t bomb, whatever Obama wants to do it automatically right.

      So when you attack Obama, you’re just being knee jerk ODS sufferers. Stop laughing! He’s just dreamy and so good at everything, and you have ODS if you can’t see that!

      You can’t be taken seriously. Heck, sometimes I don’t even know why I come here and read your ramblings. Which definitely isn’t to get an attention fix and troll you into it. Because I’m not either psychologically dysfunctional. The magenta caterpillars with Sarah Palin’s face and ample bosom totally agree with me on this.

      The odd thing is, I don’t think you guys see how absurd your position is! Yep, even though it’s the same position as a hundred media outlets and a bunch of experts on the news, it’s absurd. Because it assumes Obama is wrong, and by the holy axioms of quantum leftist, that cannot be.

      Yes, I’m done now, honey. What did I write? Oh, the same stuff I wrote the last five times. It doesn’t matter, those ex-military basket cases at QandO get lathered up about it every time I say it.

    • National Journal
      “As he addressed a global audience Tuesday night, liberal elites blindly accepted White House fiction that Russian intervention this week was somehow part of Obama’s master plan. Their conservative counterparts practically rooted against a diplomatic breakthrough, preferring an Obama black eye over peace.
      Obama won! Obama lost! The fact is it’s too soon to keep score. In the long view of this past week, I suspect the Syria standoff will stand as an example of the best and worst of Obama’s leadership. Granted, in the heat of the moment, it’s far easier to catalogue the worst.”
       
      Just us here at QandO Scott.
      You delusional twit.

      • I thought this was more revealing …

        No friends: No student of the presidency would claim that Obama’s problems with Congress could be solved simply by schmoozing them. There are structural and political problems that no amount of alcohol can solve. But as a matter of history and common sense, Obama could do better for himself and his causes if he got to know Congress better – if he listened and engaged in a way that pushes leaders toward solutions that help both sides. Instead, Obama has what one former top adviser called a “check-the-box” approach to Washington relations. He’ll spend enough time to maintain appearances, nothing more, and lectures people who demand to be heard. And so, as he faced an international and constitutional crisis, Obama and his team were in a familiar state: isolated, insular, and alone.

        … and that’s just describes our POTUS domestically. Internationally, he also has no friends.
        We now need a box on our Presidential checkoff that reads … “plays well with others.” Nobody from Chicago will ever get that box automatically again.

    • Erp is just phoning the trolling in these days.
      Pathetic Collectivist lying tool.
      It’s true…
      a mind…even one as mediocre as Erp’s…is a terrible thing to waste.

      • It’s a sick attempt to get some attention.
        Even Erp knows this was a lucky recovery from at least 2 screw ups.

    • Best possible outcome?  How do you figure?  Syria says it’s giving WMD to Russia.  Who’s to say that transaction ever takes place?  And who’s to say Russia won’t give them back in a year or two, when no one is looking?
       
      Your slavish devotion to the Democratic Party has so blinded you that you are incapable of objective analysis.  You refuse to admit that Obama painted himself into a corner over the issue, and then when popular sentiment was against him, Putin and Assad made him look like a buffoon.  The world is laughing at Obama, Erb.  I’m not laughing, though, I am saddened by the fact that our foreign policy is in the hands of incompetent amateurs from top to bottom.
       

      • Not only has Putin played Obama, he’s played all the Obama-worshipers for free:  he’s got them beliving that Russian military re-enforcements to Assad against Obama’s rebels is “the best possible outcome.”

    • Best quote I saw (over at Politico:) “The lunatics on the right are going crazy trying to criticize Obama for getting the best possible outcome while falling over themselves to credit Putin/Assad.”

      Which perfectly describes you dense righties – lunatics, and absurd ones at that. You should take that quote seriously. And definitely pay no attention to anything else Politico says, such as “Barack Obama’s unsteady handling of the Syria crisis has been an avert-your-gaze moment in the history of the modern presidency — highlighting his unsettled views and unattractive options in a way that has caused his enemies to cackle and supporters to cringe.” Really, don’t pay any attention to that second quote from Politico. It’s absurd, just like you dense righties. Only pay attention to the first quote, which proves that my position that Obama is just dreamy is definitely the right one.

    • The right wing wackos at USA Today, Time and New Republic show their ODS….
       
      http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Journalism/2013/09/11/Time-USA-Today-Declare-Putin-Winner-Over-Obama
       
      Click the linky’s Scott, and when you get to the first one, go on through the links to Time/USA Today and New Republic…..assuming you understand how the whole internet link thing works.

    • From the move A Time to Kill (1996)…

      Jake Tyler Brigance: [in his summation, talking about Tonya Hailey] I want to tell you a story. I’m going to ask you all to close your eyes while I tell you the story. I want you to listen to me. I want you to listen to yourselves. Go ahead. Close your eyes, please. This is a story about a little girl walking home from the grocery store one sunny afternoon. I want you to picture this little girl. Suddenly a truck races up. Two men jump out and grab her. They drag her into a nearby field and they tie her up and they rip her clothes from her body. Now they climb on. First one, then the other, raping her, shattering everything innocent and pure with a vicious thrust in a fog of drunken breath and sweat. And when they’re done, after they’ve killed her tiny womb, murdered any chance for her to have children, to have life beyond her own, they decide to use her for target practice. They start throwing full beer cans at her. They throw them so hard that it tears the flesh all the way to her bones. Then they urinate on her. Now comes the hanging. They have a rope. They tie a noose. Imagine the noose going tight around her neck and with a sudden blinding jerk she’s pulled into the air and her feet and legs go kicking. They don’t find the ground. The hanging branch isn’t strong enough. It snaps and she falls back to the earth. So they pick her up, throw her in the back of the truck and drive out to Foggy Creek Bridge. Pitch her over the edge. And she drops some thirty feet down to the creek bottom below. Can you see her? Her raped, beaten, broken body soaked in their urine, soaked in their semen, soaked in her blood, left to die. Can you see her? I want you to picture that little girl. Now imagine she’s white.

      Now imagine the President is Bush. If this was Bush, the good professor Erb would be all over him like a cheap suit.

    • Oh look!  Scott put up another comment in which he casts critics of Obama as being: “deranged”, “crazy”, “absurd”, “knee-jerk”, jingoistic, and anti-American.  And, failures by the administration to achieve support are cast as “patience” and “willingness to engage Congress” (which he failed to do in Libya…and yet, Scott still supported him taking the US to war there).  The amateurish fumbles and the several faux pas of Obama, Kerry, et al. are recast as “going cautiously to avoid disaster” and allowing Putin to outmaneuver the administration and gain a major strategic advantage is “the best possible outcome”.
      Oh, but Scott “teaches this stuff” so he gets to make declarations which are indistinguishable from partisan propaganda, and pretend it’s “analysis” instead of mindlessly rallying for his party.

      • Scott put up another comment in which he casts critics of Obama as being: “deranged”, “crazy”, “absurd”, “knee-jerk”, jingoistic, and anti-American.

        I forgot to mention, he tosses these ad hominem attacks at the blog writers and the majority of comment participants, even after he wined endlessly just a few days ago about how awful we were to engage in ad hominem attacks.
        Debate tip #425: When seeking to engage in a civil exchange of ideas, focusing on facts and avoiding personal attacks, entering a discussion by accusing the other participants, in the very first sentence, of being “deranged”, followed by a second sentence in which other participants are dismissed as “not to be taken seriously”, actually does not serve the goal of having a civil exchange.  It serves to derail discussions of the facts into personal attacks.

  • So, after watching Obama’s performance I have only one thought – Why did he even give a speech to begin with?  He addressed the American people to ask for their support for a resolution that will not be voted on!  WTF??!!??!!  This has been a fiasco from the very beginning and for the first time in my life I am watching an American President dancing to the tune of a Russian.  I know, I just know there will be at least one commenter (troll) on this blog (Erb) who will call me a racist but I can’t help myself.  As I think of the speech I close my eyes and I see Obama, hat in hand, asking his Russian counterpart, “Shall I dance a jig for ya, Massah Putin?”

  • It is also difficult to see how Kerry makes it to the end of the term. Obama doesn’t like making foreign policy on any terms other than his own. Kerry put him off his game, and Kerry is most likely to pay the price for the Syria fiasco.
    Don’t be surprised if sometime in the near future the secretary decides he wants to spend more time on his yacht.

    —TheCorner
    ‘Course, that guy is a dense rightie, soooo…
    But “watch and learn”, this could all be “good and necessary” in getting one of the worst people in the history of ever out of office at State.  And it helped cripple Pres. Red Line politically, too.  That is a mixed blessing, however.

  • Well, I watched Obama’s speech. That’s 20 minutes of my life I can’t get back. He said a lot of stuff, then contradicted that stuff, then talked about something else. My guess is that the speech was put together by splicing several drafts that were trying to keep up with unfolding events.
    Putin has said that the UNSC won’t vote until they get a firm promise from Obama to forswear any strikes, and considering the box Obama is in, I don’t see how he can avoid it, though I’m sure he’ll couch any such statement in gobbledygook and diplomatic language. Obama claims he reserves the right to strike if the UN route proves unworkable, but doesn’t seem to realize that he can’t order a strike simply because he refused to promise not to strike, which is what that situation boils down to.
    So the UN route is a given, and however they phrase it, someone has to put boots on the ground to secure the CW sites, and Obama, Kerry, and McCain have sworn to the American people that they will not put US boots on the ground. So the boots will be primarily Russian. Iran might offer some, but nobody on the UNSC is really wanting their help these days. So Russia is on the ground and Americans aren’t.
    Obama also made a point of saying he reserves the right to strike at a future date if Syria doesn’t comply fully with whatever the UN decides, or if they fail to meet the requirements set by the US for control or destruction of their chemical weapons. That sounds reassuring, except that it shows Obama is a fool who hasn’t thought about what happens next.
    Russia, and perhaps China and some token Western forces are going to go into Syria, whose CW sites are scattered, hidden, and defended. The locations of all their munitions are simply the places where they’ve decided to put munitions. Where ever they’ve put munitions will become a location with Russian boots on the ground. Those Russian boots are human shields, under the auspices of the United Nations. We can’t strike those, ever.
    To take charge of any chemical weapon site, the Russians would have to augment (working with) the Syrian forces previously in charge of guarding such weapons, or supplant them. The Russians, UN, and Obama would of course argue that it would be best if the UN forces went ahead and supplanted the Syrian forces. This is good because it will free up a lot of Syrian forces for front line assaults, easing their manpower problems.
    That leaves Russians and perhaps some other UN forces exposed to potential rebel or terrorist attacks, so they’ll have to dig in. Given the grave danger of having CW munitions falling into Al Qaeda hands, they might even have to call in lots of air support to carry out their vital UN mission of guarding the stockpiles. And of course the stockpiles are located where ever Syrian needs a stockpile located, or Russian troops located, or just a good series of air strikes. The Russians could even move the CW around to “more secure” locations as needed to meet tactical challenges presented by the rebels. Keep in mind, the munitions are where ever the Russians or Syrians say they are, and they’re highly mobile so a quick trip in the trunk of a car can make such weapons appear anywhere, even if the US sends in some non-boot wearing inspectors to verify that nobody is lying.
    At some point Obama might actually wise up enough and demand the removal of the Russian troops, but of course they can’t be removed because their guarding the critically important chemical weapons stockpiles, so that Assad can’t use them, and of course Assad can’t guard them himself because all his guards got sent to the front lines when the UN demanded that Assad relieve them of guard duty. We wouldn’t want to risk having the weapons fall into Al Qaeda’s hands, certainly. Besides, Obama can’t order Russian troops to do anything.
    So Obama has opened the door to a massive Russian reinforcement of Syrian positions, acting as a reserve Syrian force in the conflict, and done it in such a way that the world will celebrate Russian involvement instead of condemning it. Genius.
    He can’t turn around and note that the plan was a sham taking advantage of Kerry’s gaffe, because now Kerry is out there proclaiming that it was his brilliant idea, following up on some brilliant discussions that Obama brought up with Putin over the preceding months, along with a side conversation at the G-20 summit.
    They have been so badly outmaneuvered, out thought, and out right played that it’s almost a work of art. The rebels really thought that Obama was going to be sending missiles to blow up their enemies any minute now. And that’s actually what Obama intended, too. Instead he’s sending Assad a bunch of Russian reinforcements who will double as human shields and guarantee that the US can’t do a single thing in Syria except stand by and watch Obama’s jihadists lose.
    WIth Obama’s fecklessness and emotional reactions, and Kerry’s unswerving stupidity, Putin couldn’t have possibly gotten Russian forces into Syria without a massive international outcry and huge risks of initiating a major confrontation. Now Putin can send them in with Obama’s stamp of approval. Two more moves and Putin can probably con Obama into paying their hotel bills and travel expenses.

    • “And in the news today, President Lyndon B. Putin has stated he will commit another 2000 Russian advisors in South Syria to support the Army of the Republic of Victorious Syria (ARVS) “

  • Just a heads up – since today, 9/11 is a day that Obama admin thinks has absolutely zero meaning to muslims, lets all check YouTube to be sure that there’s nothing on there to possibly rile them up in case they decide to sack an embassy or blow stuff up.

    • I wonder what the pucker-factor is in diplomatic posts across the globe, knowing that this State Dept. is SOOOOO accountable, and they are the one’s who “have your back”…

      • It would be nice to get through the day without the Al-Queda un-dead trying to eat our brains again, what with them being almost wiped out and all.