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Obama Administration: Eager to Save Syria’s Anti-American Dictator
Pajamas Media ^ | April 30, 2011 | Barry Rubin

Posted on 05/01/2011 6:21:50 AM PDT by Kaslin

Before I remark on the idiotic analysis of the day, I have to write a disclaimer. I usually don’t remark on what David Ignatius writes, but this latest article is too good — meaning too bad — to pass up. But first some background so you can see how things work behind the scenes in Washington, D.C.

I grew up within about two blocks of Mr. Ignatius. One of my best friends went to school with him. After my friend defeated Ignatius for the chairmanship of the school’s most prestigious club by a landslide, Mr. Ignatius said to him, “I could have beaten you if I’d wanted to!”

In 1982 or perhaps in 1983, I spoke at a conference about media reporting on the Lebanon war. I had witnessed, for the first time in person, the most amazing distortions of truth by the journalists there.

One notorious example I remember was a reporter standing in front of a Lebanese house claiming it had been callously destroyed by the Israeli forces. This statement was somewhat belied by the fact that a rather large and healthy tree was growing in the middle of the derelict building, extending its branches well above the level of the walls.

Knowing that Mr. Ignatius, who had reported on the war, was on the panel, I stated several times something to the effect that, “This doesn’t apply to David Ignatius, who did a great job.”

To my surprise, after the event he came up to me and angrily said, “You [word unsuitable for family publications] me and I’m going to get you.”

Some time later, he reviewed one of my books in a tiny publication that few if any read. It was the nastiest review I’ve ever received. But, as I say, nobody saw it and I only noticed because the publisher sent it to me.

About four or five years later I was attending some conference sitting at the dinner table with him and Ignatius said something to the effect that I had served my sentence, been punished enough, and so his wrath had been sated.

There. So now you can judge whether I am biased against him.

Ignatius, who has all along been a defender of Obama administration policy toward Syria, wrote in the Washington Post:

U.S. officials see signs that Syria’s embattled president, Bashar al-Assad, has concluded that to survive the massive protests against his regime, which continued today across the country, he will have to distance himself somewhat from Iran.

Whatever happens in the anti-Assad protests, Iran is likely to lose some of its easy access to Syria, its key Arab ally. If Assad survives, he will have to establish some distance from Iran to appease Sunni protesters, U.S. officials believe. And it he’s toppled, Syria is likely to be ruled by a Sunni-dominated regime that will be more hostile to Iran.

Now this is a sparkling example of the kind of idiocy that passes for analyzing the Middle East on the part of “U.S. officials” and big-name analysts in the media. Remember that Assad has adopted a strategy of identifying his opponents with America, Israel, and al-Qaeda. He is toughing it out. Why would be want to distance himself from an ally which:

– Provides Muslim religious credentials to his regime ruled mostly by Alawites who are not Muslims. (When I once told an emigre Syrian Muslim journalist that a lot of people disagreed with me about Alawites not being Muslims, she laughed and said that everyone knew they weren’t.)

– Gives it strategic cover against the West and Israel. When Iran has nuclear weapons that umbrella of protection would be even more valuable.

– Pays a lot of its bills through subsidies.

– Pays for its weapons and for supporting joint Iran-Syria clients like Hamas and Hizballah.

The possibility of any decision by Assad to move away from Iran? Zero.

And if he’s toppled would there be a Sunni regime more hostile to Iran? That’s possible but unlikely. If he is overthrown by military officers — the most likely possibility — they would not change Syrian foreign policy.

True, a Muslim Brotherhood-dominated regime might well be anti-Iran, as well as anti-American and eager to go to war with Israel. A moderate democratic government would be anti-Iran. But there are plenty of Islamists and radical nationalists who would align with Iran as their only good choice of strategic ally.

At any rate, what this all amounts to is merely another argument that Assad is a moderate at heart. Don’t try to overthrow him and he’ll come around to realizing that America is his best friend. Really?

Why is it that President Obama called for the overthrow of Mubarak and somehow believes that Assad is better for American interests than the former Egyptian president? There is a risk of an Islamist takeover in Syria, but it is certainly lower than it was in Egypt when the White House helped push that regime over.

Remember: the Syrian regime is the main sponsor of the terrorists killing American soldiers in Iraq. It is the main sponsor of Hamas and Hizballah. It is seizing control of Lebanon and turning that country into a satellite. And it subverts any chance of peace with Israel.

This is the regime that the administration and its pet journalists wants to preserve?

What really irks me is that one virtually never ever sees any of the points made above even mentioned in the mass media, though they are all obvious and well-documented.

Here’s a good policy for the United States: Assad should go now! Yesterday!

Uh-oh. I better watch out for that next book review!

TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; Foreign Affairs

1 posted on 05/01/2011 6:21:55 AM PDT by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin
Can someone please post the "0bama Doctrine" on foreign affairs and military intervention?

And please use small words. I'm just not smart enough to understand this guy.

2 posted on 05/01/2011 6:37:16 AM PDT by FatherofFive (Islam is evil and must be eradicated)
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To: Kaslin

They seem to have so much in common.

3 posted on 05/01/2011 6:46:55 AM PDT by freekitty (Give me back my conservative vote; then find me a real conservative to vote for)
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To: Kaslin

To the headline - DUH! When it comes to Obama, watch what he does, NOT what he says.

He’s bought into the concept of the Middle Eastern Caliphate - he needs Egypt to bookend with Iran to make that happen. He further needs Syria in the hands of an Iranian satellite government and for Hamas to be empowered in Beirut and the Palestinian territories. His actions all show this.

The problem is Israel. Much like Soros views the United States as the largest obstacle to his One-World Government, Obama views Israel is the largest obstacle to a Middle Eastern Caliphate.

4 posted on 05/01/2011 7:14:34 AM PDT by Buckeye Battle Cry (Terrorism is nothing more than Kinetic Islam)
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To: FatherofFive

Great question... Unfortunately, I don’t a copy of our Mid-East foreign policy from any of our last several presidents.

- Carter supported the “freedom fighters” in Afghanistan. Turned out the freedom fighters were the Taliban. OOPS.
- Reagan promoted freedom and we saw the amazing results. But even he decided not to stay in Lebanon.
- George HW Bush did not have the stones to complete what he started with Desert Storm. We know how that worked out.
- Clinton was an idiot when it came to foreign policy (Rwanda, Bosnia, Kosovo, Somalia, etc.)
- George W Bush did a good job with a bad hand. Unfortunately, after 2006, he gave up on his freedom agenda. Thank you John Kerry and Nancy Pelosi.
- Obama - policy, what policy. If it’s bad for America, he’s all for it.

5 posted on 05/01/2011 7:16:18 AM PDT by MS from the OC (Obama foreign policy"If you're an enemy we're sorry; if you're a friend, you're sorry" Abe Greenwald)
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To: Buckeye Battle Cry
He’s bought into the concept of the Middle Eastern Caliphate

I doubt he is that much of a Muslim. His support of those who wish for a caliphate could also be explained by his leftist ideology. A common theme of Leftists since the 1960's if not earlier is that the legitimacy of a revolutionary movement is defined by their anti-americanism.

The problem is Israel. Much like Soros views the United States as the largest obstacle to his One-World Government, Obama views Israel is the largest obstacle to a Middle Eastern Caliphate.

Again this can be explained by knowledge of University cocktail lounge neomarxism. The left turned on Israel after they won the 67 and 73 wars. After Israel won those two wars handily, the left no longer considered Israel to be a victim worthy of their sympathy and support.

I believe that Larry Elder wrote a column a year or two ago showing how all of Obamas policies were straight out of the song sheet of the campus left from circa 1986.

6 posted on 05/01/2011 7:29:31 AM PDT by Fraxinus (My opinion, worth what you paid.)
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To: FatherofFive
This place sure looks familiar.

7 posted on 05/01/2011 7:47:06 AM PDT by Iron Munro (The purpose of fighting is to win. There is no possible victory in defense. -- John Steinbeck)
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To: Kaslin

The majority of muslims in Indonesia are Sunni, however, they have a significan Shia population as well.

Does anybody know which sect of islam was studied by Obama?

The answer may reveal why he appears to be supporting Shia in the Middle East.

8 posted on 05/01/2011 7:53:14 AM PDT by Erik Latranyi (Too many conservatives urge retreat when the war of politics doesn't go their way.)
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To: FatherofFive
The Obama Doctrine:

You say yes. you say no
You say come, you say go
You change just like the weather
First your up then you're down
Say you can't hang around
Then you promise them forever

9 posted on 05/01/2011 7:54:25 AM PDT by hflynn
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To: Fraxinus

This Obama experiment is going to be way to expensive to America. It was all out of hand well before this. The 12th Iman needs to vacate the White House.

... from a previous post

The anti American has summoned and started the assembly of the greatest force against America.

He has taken America into Jihad... and beyond.

The ME? ... consolidating it for his brethren with American fire power @ Americas expense.

His first speech in Cairo... His speech in Indonesia included references against the Jews.

He has more than shown himself to be on side with muslims. Heck! He shares their same mantra....death to America.

Lose the war on terror? Lose the ME? I don’t thinkso....consolidate it in the name of Allah.

For Obama? Its the ..current policy from the white house.....the marginalization and destruction of America.

Obama , culturally never was an American as he carries many chips on his shoulder and as we see from his old culture at many levels. He feels for his Kenyan identity, he feels for his muslim identity developed during adolescence in Indonesia, and he feels his angst against white and America....DeSouza went to great lengths to detail this in his book.

Its all about death to America....death to the great satan!
from a previous posting, see second last paragraph...

His associations with the MB? Over 20 years of understudy to Wright and Farrakhan ties him to the people and philosophy, thus his endorsement of the coup... These are the same guys who are shooting at our troops.

His drive against America is demonstrated in his unfettered support of the OIC driven “UN”.

All his acts are supportive of Islam. They will march on Israel, and then guess what? YOU and ME.

Follow it out...

“One of the prettiest sounds on earth” is the Muslim call to prayer at sunset.
Barack Hussein Obama as quoted by Nicholas D. Kristof in the New York Times - March 6, 2007

• The FIRST thing Obama did as a newly elected Illinois State Senator was to attempt to declare a Muslim holiday. Obama sponsored Bill SR0110 in the 90th General Assembly to declare November 1, 1997 to be Islamic Community Center Day. It did not pass.

• His biological father was a Muslim.

• Because his biological father was a Muslim the Islam world thinks he is a Muslim.

• His stepfather was a Muslim.

• As a child Barry was enrolled in school as a Muslim in Jakarta Indonesia. An Indonesian Madrasa.
• Barack Hussein Obama’s first and middle names are Arabic Muslim names.
Barack was the name for Mohammad’s horse. Husein, enough said.

• Obama recited the opening lines of the Muslim call to prayer, which includes a vow of fidelity to Islam, in flawless Arabic on a radio program. - Nikolos Kristoff, NYTs, 3-06-07 (***this one is a gottcha moment***)

• On that same program he said he thinks the call to prayer is “one of the prettiest sounds on earth.”

• Obama belonged to Rev. Wright’s (a former Muslim) church for twenty years. Many congregants are Muslims.

• Obama’s said that the U.S. is “one of the largest Muslim countries in the world.”

• Obama holds Muslim celebrations in the WH but canceled the National Day of Prayer.

• President Obama’s religious adviser, Eboo Patel, once deemed the United States “the ideal place for the renewal of Islam.”

• Obama does not give gifts on Christmas.

• Obama doesn’t celebrate his birthday.

• Obama falsely attributes Muslim participation in the founding of America.

• Obama required that the cross be covered when he gave a speech at Notre Dame.

• Christian symbol covered up during Obama’s Georgetown speech

• Obama’s first major speech in office was a “Muslim outreach” speech in Cairo Egypt.

• “The American President told me in confidence that he is a Muslim,” said Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit on Nile TV.

• Obama gave strong support to the Cordoba House community center and mosque to be built at the Ground Zero site of Sep. 11, 2001 at a dinner celebrating the day’s end of the first day of Ramadan at the WH.

• Obama tasked NASA with a mission of “Muslim outreach.”

• Obama referred to his faith as “my Muslim faith” gaffe in an interview with George Stephanopolous.

• Pushes Islamic freedom of religion but not Jewish or Christian freedoms. Several weeks ago he told Israel NOT to build settlements in East Jerusalem. But OK to build that Mosque at Ground Zero.

All this brings on a interesting question... how can America have any struggle against Islam, or protect herself with the most powerful muslim in the world sitting in the White House?

Be wary, wary aware ....and wary, wary afraid...get prepared for more creeping sharia...more than what is coming out of the White House today

10 posted on 05/01/2011 8:25:59 AM PDT by himno hero ("armageddon is well seeded, America will pay"...Barrack Obama)
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To: Buckeye Battle Cry

You are sooooo right.

This Libya thing is just a obama sideshow to distract attention from the greater game. Obama wants exactly what you say right down to a nuclear armed Iran.

The sooner that traitorous, treasonous, seditious b’tard is removed the better!

11 posted on 05/01/2011 8:36:31 AM PDT by himno hero ("armageddon is well seeded, America will pay"...Barrack Obama)
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