May 6, 2013

"U.N. has testimony that Syrian rebels used sarin gas...."

Reuters reports:
"This was use on the part of the opposition, the rebels, not by the government authorities," [said commission member Carla Del Ponte]....

President Bashar al-Assad's government and the rebels accuse each another of carrying out three chemical weapon attacks....

President Barack Obama last year declared that the use or deployment of chemical weapons by Assad would cross a "red line."
There's a lot of motivation to lie here. One side used the gas and accused the other side of doing it. Which side was more motivated to use this tactic? The rebels. No? The "red line" announcement created an opportunity for them. On the other hand, that seems so obvious that the opportunity for Assad appears. He can credibly claim they took advantage of the obvious opportunity.

What a mistake to set the red line at something the rebels could do!

42 comments:

Jeff Teal said...

All Cretans are liars.Who is telling the truth? That includes the reporters.

Lem said...

What a mistake to set the red line at something the rebels could do!

Unless... that is the desire. Create the conditions that would bring about a regime change.

CEO-MMP said...

What difference does it make? It's not like it was a hard line or anything. He's doing a much less funny version of the Bugs Bunny bit, "I dast ya to step over this line"
"I'm a steppin'"
"Well I dast ya to step over THIS line"

etc. POTUS can keep that shit slowplayed until late 2015 easy. He's talented.

CEO-MMP said...


Unless... that is the desire. Create the conditions that would bring about a regime change.


On what evidence do you base your suggestion that Barry wants or has the stomach for, regime change anywhere but, you know, the one he wants here in the US?

Lem said...

On what evidence do you base your suggestion...

I'm speculating that when Obama speaks about foreign affairs, every word is carefully chosen... they are not off the cuff.

He has advisors.

edutcher said...

Thank you, Madame.

Barry's tendency to shoot off his mouth is coming back to bite him.

He thinks he's a tough guy because he has a bunch of thugs behind him and what works domestically (what used to) also works in foreign policy.

It don't work that way.

PS One point where CEO may be right:

Like the rebels in Libya, the rebels in Syria are also mobbed up with Al Qaeda, so our Little Zero just might think it would be cool to have another government of crazies in the Middle East.

It's worked out so well so far.

CEO-MMP said...

Could be, Lem. Of course, isn't the word out of the WH now that Barry was off-script when he said it? In other words, his new excuse is something like...just cuz I said it doesn't make it my policy.

Policy is a great word, especially if you say it like Ron White.

edutcher said...

Lem said...

On what evidence do you base your suggestion...

I'm speculating that when Obama speaks about foreign affairs, every word is carefully chosen... they are not off the cuff.

He has advisors.


He still has to listen to them.

On this one, apparently he didn't.

CEO-MMP said...

ed-t, I'm figuring that, if he really had the nuts for regime change (other than turning 'merica into some sort of weird socialist swamp), the perfect time and place would've been Iran.

Since he didn't act then (and hasn't acted since)--I figure he's not interested in anything but nutbag thug dictators and other radical muzzies running things.

Matthew Sablan said...

Wait -- did he say no take backs about that red line? If he didn't, he gets a do-over.

bpm4532 said...

Great. Al Qaeda has access to chemical weapons. No, they and their followers are not a problem.

edutcher said...

You may be right, although Iran may have been to tough a nut to crack.

Or he likes governments run by Islamic crazies and wants more. AQ, after all, is a Sunna outfit and that wouldn't fly in Shia Iran.

YMMV.

Mogget said...

The smartest man in the world is off-script? Unpossible!

David Hampton said...

Obama is not the only one with a 'red line.' He is being played for the mark he is.

Matthew Sablan said...

If the rebels -did- actually use the gas against Syria and Syria did not (this is a hypothetical, mind you), does that mean we'd need to move in defense of the Syrian government, or does the warning only apply to them?

Hagar said...

Obama's White House is getting a reputation for dismissing advisors whose advice is not what it wants to hear.

Phil 3:14 said...

Pfffew! Off the hook.

netmarcos said...

Be very careful about reporting on sarin in this part of the world. It was the last thing that Julio Fuentes and Maria Grazia Cutuli did in their professional careers.

netmarcos said...

Be very careful about reporting on sarin in this part of the world. It was the last thing that Julio Fuentes and Maria Grazia Cutuli did in their professional careers.

Hagar said...

When is the last time you saw a picture with anyone with any reputation in economics standing next to Obama?

Even Geithner seems to have dropped off the edge of the earth.

Colonel Angus said...

Hope we stay out of that mess.

William said...

I think moderate, reasonable Muslims have as much influence on their governments and societies as vegans in Texas have on the beef industry. There is no good side in Syria. We'd be well advised to stay out of it. They'll blame us for everything anyway.

Colonel Angus said...

There is no good side in Syria. We'd be well advised to stay out of it. They'll blame us for everything anyway.

Perhaps we will get lucky and both sides will lose.

Æthelflæd said...

William said...
"I think moderate, reasonable Muslims have as much influence on their governments and societies as vegans in Texas have on the beef industry. There is no good side in Syria. We'd be well advised to stay out of it. They'll blame us for everything anyway."

Yes, we have no dog in this fight, unless it is to keep both dogs fighting so their attention is focused on each other, instead of Israel or us.

I would add that what makes a moderate, reasonable Muslim is that they want the radicals to get rid of Israel for them. Yeah, that's harsh, but true, unfortunately.

Balfegor said...

RE: Sablan:

If the rebels -did- actually use the gas against Syria and Syria did not (this is a hypothetical, mind you), does that mean we'd need to move in defense of the Syrian government, or does the warning only apply to them?

That would be a nice irony. Frankly, if we were going to intervene at all, it should have been in the very early stages, when we could have had a chance to shape the character of the rebel movement. At this point, we -- and the region as a whole -- would probably be better off if Assad remained in power.

Someone has called the President's dumb bluff, but I think his reluctance now to intervene is probably appropriate. We've missed our window.

LarsPorsena said...

Our national interest is to see both sides exhausted after a long civil war.

On one side is Assad/Alawites/Hezbullah and their BFF Iran vs Sunni Salfists/AQ Wahabis.

Pray for a protracted struggle.

tiger said...

Too bad Assad AND the rebels both can't lose.

Cedarford said...

Balfegor - "At this point, we -- and the region as a whole -- would probably be better off if Assad remained in power.

Someone has called the President's dumb bluff, but I think his reluctance now to intervene is probably appropriate."

---------------------
The last of the excretable Neocons were banging the war drums hard last week, saying we HAD to go in and topple Assad because "American credibility is on the line, nothing is worse than a leader Who Kills His Own People, and "we are All Syrians Now".

1. Civil War forces leaders to "Kill their own people". Sometimes the leader is right to do so. See Abraham Lincoln. See Simon Bolivar.

2. What is far worse is leaders leaving their borders and invading and killing other people.

3. Only some 28% of Americans support us entering yet another war, regarding Syria, and only if the regime uses WMD.

4. No one in Congress, even the few remaining Neocons, is willing to step up and say anytime a Republican or Democrat President threatens war on his own and sets a "red line", Congress is obligated to go along with it.

5. We seem, as a people, to be rejecting the stupid WWII exortation "We are now all Londoners" - as applied to 3rd World wars. Americans reject "we are all Syrians now", or "We are all Iranians now", "We are all Somalis now"...or the Israeli backers trying to exploit any terrorism here "We are all Israelis now".
At best, its stupid emotional appeal..like anti-2nd Amendment rights liberals screaming its variant after every mass shooting "We are all Columbine now" "We are all Newtown, now!, and private ownership of evil guns must end...."

6. Republicans lost Congress in 2006, the Presidency in 2008 and 2012 because women rejected them about 55-45%. The stuff about hispanics, gays rejecting them is window dressing. Women voters were the prime determinant.
Recoiling from the Right to Life goobers was one reason, that Obama made them feel good was one, but a huge reason on top of that was women thought Obama would not stick us in future wars.

Scott M said...

He has advisors.

Yes, but sometimes he still "acts stupidly".

elkh1 said...

While Obama talked the talk, Bibi walked the walk.

While the "greatest" nation on earth hid its head deep in its you-know-what, the shitty little Jewish state saved the day, again.

elkh1 said...

Scott M said...
Yes, but sometimes he still "acts stupidly".

Sometimes? Most times.
This time the scapegoat filmmaker is already in jail.

Balfegor said...

Re: elkh1:

While the "greatest" nation on earth hid its head deep in its you-know-what, the shitty little Jewish state saved the day, again.

My impression is they were just bombing weapons caches that would have gone to Hizbullah, not trying to unseat Assad. I can't imagine how their position would be improved by Assad falling -- they'd probably end up with a bunch of fanatics fueled by pure unleaded Judenhass revving their engines right across their northern border.

jr565 said...

Wait -- did he say no take backs about that red line? If he didn't, he gets a do-over.


He had his fingers crossed at the time he said it too.

Æthelflæd said...

http://worldnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/05/06/18079587-israel-to-syrias-assad-airstrikes-not-aimed-at-helping-rebels


jr565 said...

Cedarford wrote:
4. No one in Congress, even the few remaining Neocons, is willing to step up and say anytime a Republican or Democrat President threatens war on his own and sets a "red line", Congress is obligated to go along with it.

Not anytime. But in the case of Syria or Iran, a case could be made that Congress go along with it. Not saying that we should necessarily go to war, only that war is not off the table when it comes to those two countries.

rhhardin said...

Sarin wasn't great in the Tokyo subways, but did surprisingly little damage considering, back a decade or so ago.

elkh1 said...

Balfegor said...
"...weapons caches that would have gone to Hizbullah, ...they'd probably end up with a bunch of fanatics fueled by pure unleaded Judenhass ..."

Bibi was putting out the imminent fire: Assad's weapons to Hizbullah was to divert attentions to an external enemy, insinuating that he was the defender against the little Satan, anyone against him was helping the Jews. After Assad's fall, the fanatics would fight each other for power, e.g. Egypt, and Libya. They would be too busy to engage an external foe for a while. The little Satan could play either faction.

Cedarford said...

JR565 - "Not anytime. But in the case of Syria or Iran, a case could be made that Congress go along with it. Not saying that we should necessarily go to war, only that war is not off the table when it comes to those two countries."

Yes, Congress can decide the President is right and go with him...but since the later part of 2nd half of the 20th century...have become pretty united that they have co-equal say.
I agree with you on Iran..there are scenarios where US vital interests are at stake, regarding oil supply and the risk of several other countries in the ME deciding to "go nuclear" if Iran does. And war is unfortunately the right thing to do to ultimately protect America and Americans.

(The lesson of Bush and the neocons pushing us into an elective war with Iraq when it was not in our vital national interests and the destruction that caused Republican prospects and damage to the Treasury is hardly forgotten in present days)...why only 28% support war...and only if the Syrian regime uses WMD..and only if we have a solid cast of allies on our side...and only if the humanitarians and neocons are not called to risk their own asses..

It is hard to see how Syria would ever rise to a threat to the vital interests of America itself, though.

Pollygon said...

"6. Republicans lost Congress in 2006, the Presidency in 2008 and 2012 because women rejected them about 55-45%. The stuff about hispanics, gays rejecting them is window dressing. Women voters were the prime determinant.
Recoiling from the Right to Life goobers was one reason, that Obama made them feel good was one, but a huge reason on top of that was women thought Obama would not stick us in future wars."

5/6/13, 10:16 AM

Warmongers take notice.

furious_a said...

Don't call my bluff, Eric.

Martinkh said...

The real question is where did whomever used the chemical agents get it from? I bet Obama would kill or allow to be killed thousands of people before he let it look like any of these were from Saddam's stockpile that went missing.

"Where did these chemical weapons come from" is the question liberals do not want answered because it might vindicate Bush.

Balfegor said...

Re: Martinkh:

"Where did these chemical weapons come from" is the question liberals do not want answered because it might vindicate Bush.

Might vindicate the war, you mean. Not sure how finding that Saddam Hussein's chemical weapons stockpile all migrated over to Syria would be a vindication of Bush II -- would tend rather to reinforce that we screwed up the invasion and the occupation.