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Wednesday, May 11, 2011

US to call for end to Assad regime?

It allegedly took Barack Obama 16 hours to decide to let the Navy SEALS go get Osama Bin Laden once they knew they had him. How long will it take for Obama to call for an end to Bashar al-Assad's regime? That's anyone's guess. But 'administration officials' said on Tuesday that Obama is 'edging closer' to making that call.
The tougher U.S. line almost certainly would echo demands for "democratic transition" that the administration used in Egypt and is now espousing in Libya, the officials said. But directly challenging Assad's leadership is a decision fraught with problems: Arab countries are divided, Europe is still trying to gauge its response, and there are major doubts over how far the United States could go to back up its words with action.

If the Syrian government should persist with its harsh crackdown on political opponents, the United States could be forced into choosing between an undesired military operation to protect civilians, as in Libya, or an embarrassing U-turn that makes it look weak before an Arab world that is on the tipping point between greater democracy or greater repression.
That's what happens when you spend two and a half years bowing and apologizing to foreign leaders, dissing your friends and coddling enemies like Assad. No one believes you'll back up your word anymore.
Two administration officials said the U.S. worries about a prevailing perception that its response to Assad's repression has been too soft, especially after helping usher longtime ally Hosni Mubarak out of power in Egypt and joining the international military coalition to shield civilians from attacks by Moammar Gadhafi's forces in Libya.
Gee, ya think so? You mean, no one is buying Hillary Clinton's repeated declarations that Assad is a 'reformer'?
Israeli concerns loom large as well. The officials said Israel, Washington's closest Mideast ally, is worried about a possible collapse of Assad's leadership and a fracturing of the country's stability. Although Syria and Israel remain technically at war, Israel's border with Syria has been relatively calm for years.
No one here is talking about it. No one official anyway. And every pundit I have seen here has argued that Assad ought to go.
The officials say there is a lack of any organized opposition in Syria, and little understanding of what the alternatives are to four decades of rule under Assad and his father, Hafez Assad, and whether a chaotic power void would lead to even greater bloodshed.
Funny that didn't bother anyone when they were deciding what to do about Egypt or Libya.

Read the whole thing.

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At 10:16 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

A dictator will never be a partner for peace.

Overthrowing a police state regime ought to be in America's interests.

Because Assad is massacring his own people - its not even a war.

What could go wrong indeed

At 3:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Assad will tell Obama to pound sand.

Obama doesn't entirely relate to the external world--he has his left-wing prejudices and his Chicago old school domestic political smarts but no sense for how the world actually runs, what the relation is or isn't between fancy speeches and one world blah blah and what actually transpires in the Hobbesian universe of cold, calculating and cynical power relations. So he goes wandering around like Mr. Magoo in a china shop, desperately filling in the space between his inner Rahm Emanuel and his inner Rashid Khalidi progressive with ad hoc scrambling..



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