Skip to comments.How Obama’s Failed Syria Policies Reflect His Flawed Instincts
Posted on 10/15/2012 1:11:04 PM PDT by drewh
Yesterday, I suggested that Mitt Romney needs a foreign policy critique of President Obama that ties Obamas failings in a specific country or situation to his poor instincts and hugely flawed overall approach. Today, Jackson Diehl of the Washington Post performs this task with respect to Syria, which he calls Obamas greatest failure.
As Diehl explains: The presidents handling of Syria. . .exemplifies every weakness in his foreign policy from excessive faith in engaging troublesome foreign leaders to his insistence in multilateralism as an end in itself to his self-defeating caution in asserting American power. That sums it up nicely.
First, Obama tried to cozy up to Bashar al-Assad, reversing the Bush administrations policy of seeking to isolate the dictator and embracing the approach of John Kerry and Nancy Pelosi, who ridiculously viewed Assad as a potential broker of Middle East peace. When the uprising broke out in Syria, the Obama administration clung to the illusion that, in Hillary Clintons words, Assad might be a reformer who could be induced to coopt the rebellion.
Then, when out-and-out civil war emerged, Obama turned U.S. policy over to the United Nations and Kofi Annan, the U.N.s peace broker. Annans mission was, of course, doomed to fail.
Even more absurdly, the Obama administration then attempted to cast Vladimir Putin in the role of peace broker. But Putin surprised the administration, which fancifully predicted in July that Putin would get on the horse that backs a transition plan to remove Assad (Hillary Clintons words). Shockingly, Putin preferred to advance Russias interests, and declined to outst his countrys long-time ally virtually the only one it has left in the region.
Since then, Obama essentially has done nothing except, as Diehl observes, to reassert his mindless campaign slogan that the tide of war is receding in the Middle East. In the meantime, the war in Syria is spreading to Turkey and Jordan, and drawing hundreds of al Qaeda into Syria. In fact, says Diehl, al Qaeda is now far more active in Syria than it is in Libya.
Killing bin Laden was wonderful. But it isnt enough to compensate for policies that are enabling the next generation of al Qaeda operatives to make major headway in crucial zones of the Middle East.
They make perfect sense if you presume he is a stealth Muslim dedicated to destroying America, but of course, that’s ridiculous ‘conspiracy stuff.’