The decision to send weapons to Syria was based on the evidence that Assad’s forces had used Sarin gas on the rebel forces, crossing a “red line” set several months ago. As Daniel Larison points out yesterday, this is where we get to as a result of a serious of “unforced errors” by the dimwit in the White House. He’s being kind; I call them stupid mistakes. First Obama says “Assad must go,” for no reason that is apparent in terms of American national interest, then he made the silly “red line” statement, which was an open invitation for claims of chemical weapon use.
Then there is the report from US “intelligence” to which Obama is responding. It claims that 100-150 rebels were killed by Sarin gas used by Assad’s forces; a claim that defies credulity all by itself. Assad’s forces are not some disorganized bunch of warlords. This is a disciplined, well trained and organized military. They have an air force, tanks, artillery, rockets, cluster munitions, and heavy weapons. And with all that, while winning battles and retaking ground, they are going to use Sarin gas to kill a mere 100 rebels? That accusation is utterly absurd.
Larison also points out that providing light weapons is completely illogical, since it does nothing to address the use of chemical weapons; it does not prevent the further use of chemical weapons, it does not protect from chemical weapon use. It does not, in fact, have anything to do with chemical weapons at all.
Then we have an article in The Times claiming that Obama didn’t want to do anything at all but was bullied by people inside and outside the White House to “do something” and yielded to the pressure. That sounds about right, given the degree of moral cowardice he has displayed since he has been in office. No one can ever claim that he is a steely “man of conviction.” My cat has more courage, and she runs away from birds.
And then we have another “insider report” that the real reason for the decision is not chemical weapon use, as we are being told, but rather the signs that Assad is winning the civil war; an outcome which the White House deems unacceptable. That at least is more or less logical even if it is, in several ways, utterly stupid. Not to mention dishonest, much like Bush and his WMD’s in Iraq.
In general terms, it is seldom a good idea to back the losing side, but more specifically is seems idiotic to back the side that has said it will commit genocide on the Syrian Christian population if it wins. Especially when you are doing so under a policy called “responsibility to protect.”
Finally, the fuckwit wants to ban firearms here at home, but he hands them out overseas like beads at Mardi Gras, because guns in the hands of nutcases in America are dangerous but guns in the hands of jihadist nutcases in other parts of the world is promoting democracy. That has worked so well in Libya, Mali, Afghanistan and Iraq, hasn’t it?