The President is seeking Congressional approval
for a strike against Syria. And if he gets Congressional approval, that will also convince the 5 percent of the American people who still have any respect for Congress. It’s the right move for Obama to ask for Congressional approval, if only because he might not get it. At least that might stop him from making what could be a serious mistake. Congress may reject or scale-down Obama’s plan for a strike against Syria, if only to embarrass and weaken Obama. That’s the best thing you can hope for from this Congress—that they’ll do the right thing, but for all the wrong reasons.
Former Senator Joe Lieberman attacked the President
for seeking Congressional approval to strike Syria. But then Joe Lieberman has never met a foreign policy blunder that he didn’t like. Since when is seeking consensus on a risky action considered stupid? I have news for Joe Lieberman—the phrase “Just Do It” might be a great slogan for a shoe company, but it’s nothing to base a foreign policy on. Lieberman said “I’m sure that our enemies are cheering now as a result of this decision because they realize it’s not clear the president will get authority.” The lesson here—we need to prevent our enemies from cheering, even if it means doing something stupid.
It’s obvious that Obama has not turned to former President Bush for advice on what to do, or by now he would have randomly invaded Jordan... and unsuccessfully at that. You would think that after a debacle like Iraq that it would be generations before a leader would consider something even remotely similar. Of course, that’s what they thought after Vietnam, too. I know we’d all like to forget about George Bush and Iraq, but there are a number of instructive lessons to be learned from all of that! Syria may be a frightening mess, but you rarely improve a mess by bombing it.
Secretary of State John Kerry spent the holiday weekend on all of the talk shows, drumming up support
for a strike on Syria. At least Obama didn’t send him out with a vial of anthrax. Many of the talk show hosts asked if Obama pausing to get Congressional approval undermined America’s credibility. I guess their opinion is that, if you’re going to do something reckless, it doesn’t make any sense to pause for a moment to think about it first. If you’re going to do something stupid, do it quickly. Doing dumb things in a careful step-by-step way just makes doing them all the more dumb.
The President has gotten support
from John McCain and Lindsey Graham for an attack on Syria. Boy, if that’s not enough to make you question the wisdom of an attack on Syria, what is? McCain put a number of conditions on his support of a strike on Syria. No, one of them was not that Obama also had to “bomb, bomb, bomb Iran,” but I’m sure that’s something that McCain considered. McCain wants Obama to do more to arm the Syrian rebels, and to make any attack on Syria strong enough to weaken the Syrian military. So essentially, John McCain will support an attack, as long as it’s a really big attack.
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