Sunday, August 25, 2013

Obama's Red Line In The Sand

A year ago, Socialist President Obama drew a red line in the sand concerning the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government against rebels in Syria.   The presumption was that if this occurred the US would organize some kind of military action if this took place.  We see now that chemical weapons have been used.   Now what Mr. President?

Obama's foreign policy, particularly in the Middle East, is incoherent.  As someone who got an "A" in International Relations 325, this Blogger cannot figure out what Obama stands for, or against and neither can the rest of the world.  Sometimes, Obama supports Dictators like Mubarak and Terrorist, like the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, except when people riot in the streets.   Other times, Obama leads from behind to bring down Qaddafi in Libya.  Obama says Iran will not be allowed to develop nuclear weapons; but they certainly will have them very soon.   The Egyptian military is fighting the Muslim Brotherhood Terrorists, so shouldn't we be supporting them, instead of withholding aid, or condemning them.  So, what is the story. 

One thing is for sure, when the President of the United States, whoever he is, draws a red line in the sand, it better mean something.   When Obama drew that red line in the sand, which we now see was foolish, related to the use of chemical weapons in Syria and then does nothing when it happens, it destroys the credibility of that President.  As such, Obama is viewed as an incompetent, paper tiger overseas and that is dangerous because it could cause countries to miscalculate, which always leads to inevitable wider war. 

The lesson I learned in International Relations 325 is that a nation should only go to war to protect its Vital Interest.  As such, as long as we are dependent on the Middle East for oil, we have Vital Interests in that region; but not related to Syria.   And, the story in Syria is basically which is the worst evil, the Dictator Assad, supported by Russia and Iran, or the rebels, some of whom are affiliated with Hezbollah and Al Queda, both enemies of Israel and the West.    This looks to be a lose, lose situation to me.

Look, it it time for some reality politics in the Middle East.   The notion that there will be Western style democracies in the Middle East, except for Israel, is ridiculous and naive.  Our goal, at best, should be the advancement of plural, secular societies in the Middle East, probably run by Dictators, or quasi Dictators, to enforce the peace.   By the way, I just described Saddam Hussein in Iraq.  We should oppose any group, or government composed of Islamic Radicals and Fascists that would impose Sharia law on their country and murder their opponents, which in Egypt includes Coptic Christians.   All we should hope for in the Middle East are governments that will not attack Israel and that can maintain stability.  That's it.

Socialist President Obama apparently did not take and pass International Relations 325.   If he had, he would understand that the position this Blogger just outlined is our only alternative in the Middle East.   As such, we might be better off if Assad remains in power in Syria and the military in Egypt clamps down on the Muslim Brotherhood.  It is what it is.  This might not be a pretty picture; but it may be the best we can hope for in these countries to avoid chaos that could draw us into a wider war to protect our Vital Interests. 


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