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President Obama Wimps Out on Syria

Updated on August 31, 2013
The result of napalm-like gas attack  before sarin gas was used on Aug.21
The result of napalm-like gas attack before sarin gas was used on Aug.21

So, Obama creates the redline on chemical weapon use. Syria crosses it with 1400 dead using sarin gas, and even three days before this attack, he used some sort of napalm-like weapon on schools and civilians in the Aleppo area killing more.

President Assad is laughing at Obama and the USA. Arab nations think Obama is weak and a wimp. He makes a threat or decision, waffles on it, needs consensus, afraid to act because of legalities while Assad continues on.

President Obama states to the American people that military action must occur because of Syria's use of chemical weapons. John Kerry makes the same case. The crescendo builds up and the military hardware is in place and ready to go. But, then, Obama states, hmmm, I better get congressional approval! The Obama missile strike plan only has 15 missiles total to target sites but none of the six remaining Syrian airbases that Assad can use! A list of targets was provided by defecting Syrian general's, yet, none of them were on the final hit list.

Well, Obama is scared to use the power. Even in a limited way. He is pathetic. There is a good chance that this attack will never happen. What happens if Congress votes against Obama? It happened to the British PM. Would Obama defy them and do it? I think not. Look, the Syrian conflict will eventually involve America in some way. American action is long overdue and now there is real provocation and all Obama is doing is making sure every T and i is in place before even a limited strike occurs.

There are plenty of political foes in the US Congress to render approval not happening. There are many reasons why the vote might fail. Obama's decision to seek their approval is stupid and was made at the last minute- Obama got cold feet. This is no different than approving the secret plan to kill Osama bin Laden.

Of course, this could a ruse for Syria because the soonest the Congress is going to vote on this will be after Sept. 9th. I suppose, Obama could conduct a surprise attack before that to catch Assad off guard. The other thing is that Assad may now be willing to press the envelope even further to further challenge and poke fun at the USA. He could use gas again or other weapons like the napalm-like attacks. If he does, what will Obama do? Does the American president have the guts to forego US Congressional approval and attack Syria?

As to the attack, whether it is punitive or not, whether it is America's best interest and a threat to national security, the bottom line is that whole thing puts America is even worse light than before. There are plenty of leaders of countries watching this wishing to challenge America and now they know Obama is weak.

The limited narrow strike plan is the safest of any military attack- missiles fired from over 500 miles off the coast of Syria at a few selected targets that may, by now, be moot. Still, what is important here is the message- America will act because the redline was crossed. Granted, the attack, whenever it occurs, may not do much, but it puts the enemies on notice. The action has political consequences. Just as his decision to get approval does.

The most recent poll has about 80% of the Americans not approving of the action and want the US Congress to vote on it. I hope Obama has a plan to save face if the Congress refuses to go along.

How embarrassing. Where are the French!? Maybe they have the guts to do it.

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      James 

      5 years ago

      Many different angles to think about here... And a very long history in Syria that we certainly don't want to jump into too quickly. See my Hub "Syria-- do we really need it?" For more.

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