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August 21, 2013

Obama, Who Won the Nobel Peace Prize, Is Determined to Get the US Into a Dirty War in Syria, For Some Reason

Blessed be the peacemakers, for they TAKE NAMES AND KICK ASS.

I'm actually just sort of assuming that Obama's all hot and heavy to get into Syria. I didn't read AllahPundit's piece. I've been in the comments.

But I assume he wants to go in there because he previously wanted to go in there and exactly one year ago, to the day, he gathered up what little manliness he had and told Syria that under no circumstances were they to use chemical weapons.

And exactly 365 days later, they appear to have done precisely that.

Via David Shor and Aaron Zelin, who was quick this morning in remembering that today’s apparent chemical massacre outside Damascus falls a year to the day from Obama issuing his empty “red line” threat. Is that why Assad did it, to show the world that he’s still alive, kicking, and defying the United States a year after O talked fake-tough about him? The “red line” comment backfired long ago by forcing Obama to take action, however feeble, in the name of protecting American credibility.

Video of Obama's Red Line Warning at the link.

Drew had a good post on this earlier. You should read it.

In short, even if this terrible massacre did take place (and there's a reasonable case to be made for questioning the timing of the story) it doesn't change the basic calculus for the US...do whatever it takes to keep the fighting going for as long as possible.

More dead Assad loyalists + more dead jihadis = US Win.

It's cold, it's uncaring and it's the reality of our interest in the fight.

Eh, I wouldn't go that far -- I don't think we need to "keep it going." I don't know that we need to do anything at all.

We have become so conditioned -- left and right both -- to think that every bomb that falls anywhere in the world is somehow An Important Matter for the United States Requiring Our Instant Action that we don't seem to ask the very important threshold question:

So what?

I don't mean "so what?" as in "Who cares if lots of people die."

I mean: What's this have to do with us?

No one elected us to impose a Pax Americana on the world, including the most important people who vote on such things, the American voters themselves.

Furthermore, the idea of a Pax Americana is folly. We don't have the manpower for it. And even if we did, I wouldn't waste those good men to save bad ones.

Bombing things and killing people is an act of extremely serious moral dimension. We should not even consider such things unless we are satisfied that one of the two is true:

1) That such action is so manifestly in our own selfish interests that we can be forgiven for taking the violent action.

2) That the action is so manifestly in the interests of general altruistic good we would scarcely forgive ourselves if we didn't take the violent action.

And ideally I'd like a good mix of 1 and 2.

So let's say we start bombing in Syria.

First question: Who do we bomb?

We could make a case either way.

And that means we probably shouldn't do it.

There should be no such thing as an Obligatory Bombing. A Thoughtless Bombing, a Rote Bombing. There should be no Muscle Memory Bombings, no Just To Keep Our Hand in the Game Bombings, no Well We've Got To Do Something and a Bombing is Something Bombings.

We need a pretty damn good reason for that.

What's our reason in Syria?


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posted by Ace at 07:30 PM

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