Readers of this space know that this Canuck is an admirer of President Obama. An easy call even if the President did not possess his many admirable qualities, given the sad state of his opposition, with knee-jerk abysmalism, and an always tried, never true policy of ‘well, shit, we’re not him’ its ragged, pathetic battle cry.
Fellow BNV columnist Patrick White’s excellent run at the Syrian situation inspires this post. I simply push Patrick’s position to its logical conclusion – Mr. President, don’t do it. Red line, blue line…irrelevant …yet another rhetorical device you employed in good faith, to make a modest geopolitical point, that hawkish bozos in Congress elevate to irrefutable foreign policy and (God help us) the need for ‘boots on the ground’. Don’t do it.
Even the densest and most brain cramped Senate screamers we Canadians endure courtesy of US evening news would agree that any nobility of purpose properly attributed to the Syrian Assad regime rebels / insurgents / freedom fighters is a dubious proposition. Casting these forces as American ‘allies’ with any assurance is black humor, big time. Got a crystal ball? Any idea what these dudes might do if they actually controlled a nation with a big time army, and chemical weapons? Some weird, crazy notion percolates through the brain that, hmmm….maybe… not such a great idea. Just like the ‘Arab spring’ of 2 years ago, all glory, wonder, and enlightenment for the downtrodden masses of these oppressed Middle Eastern and North African states – until reality hits, and the Spring is revealed as a potential portal to another dreary Islamist dystopia.
Hard as it may be for American exceptionalism instincts to be restrained, exemplars of democracy to the world, and all of that – Sir, stay the hell away, please. What unfolds in this Syrian horror show may be difficult to stomach, but in a world where Western intervention may lead to something even worse long term, at untold cost? Lend what humanitarian aid and diplomatic pressure you can, and let the dust settle. Warren Zevon had it pegged 35 years ago, same dance card, slightly different partners, when America always had some ‘envoy’ or other shuttling across the region…send 10 envoys, send 100, Mr. President – but keep your soldiers far, far away.
Nuclear Arms in the Middle East / Israel is attacking the Iraqis / the Syrians are mad at the Lebanese / And Baghdad does whatever she please / Looks like another threat to world peace / For the Envoy