Thursday, September 05, 2013

Obama, Putin and the problem with Syria ... by gimleteye

"We have to do something" is the best rationale for a long-distance, remote punishment of the brutal regime of Bashar al Assad in Syria. But if you want to do something, go to YouTube and search "Syria execution". In just a few minutes, you will get a sense of the depravity and cruelty that is etching the Mideast like acid.

The chemical weapons attacks in Syria occurred in the context of modern day tribal horrors. We have seen this movie: Serbia and Bosnia, the Hutu and Tutsi, Iraq and Afghanistan. How would the remote bombing by the US fix the horrors viewed on YouTube?

This week President Obama is in Russia for the G-20 Summit. Since American leverage is limited and severely so, these questions need to be asked and answered: for decades, Russia's foreign policy in the Mideast has been to disrupt US influence there. But Russia has also had its full share of domestic terrorism: shouldn't Russia realize that the disintegration of the Mideast, succumbing to inhumanity and desperation of millions of refugees, is against its own interests?

The following ought to be clarified: that only China is capable of controlling its own populations to suppress threats to civil order. At the end of visible conflicts, Russia and the United States both lose significantly more than China, if disorder and failed nation states prevail in the Mideast.

Putin believes the United States is still Russia's great enemy. We are not. Times have changed since Putin's KGB days.

The disorder and barbarism emerging from the Mideast are problems as big for Putin as they are for Obama. Like the forest fires in the American west, what both Russia and the United States need to prevent is the combination of fires, the acceleration and formation of their own ecosystem of violence. This point should be front and center, this week in St. Petersberg.


12 comments:

Geniusofdespair said...

what to do what to do...I don't think bombing is going to stop chemical weapons being deployed. this is a no win situation on all levels. We have to stop getting ourselves involved in mid-east insanity.

Anonymous said...

The moral high ground doesn't work any more, for us. We are a non-functioning democracy.

Anonymous said...

They are comparing Assad to Adolf Hitler and urging that we need to keep him from using chemical weapons again. There are awful consequences either way. People are wary because Colin Powell and Bush and Co lied to us and got us into the costly Iraq war unnecessarily. We are not close enough to know the details, so we have to trust our leaders. Obama is not a President who is looking for war or the sheding of blood, but he will fight when provoked. For little people like us, we have to stand firm with the President, and be prepared to be pulled into another war- our blood, our money, our way of life, our sacrifice. Whatever the rest of the world does, it is the cost for being who we are.

Anonymous said...

Syria is a diversion to get eyes off of the scandals. For two years Assad has been killing his own people more than 100,000 now Obama wants to do something.
Gas was used in March nobody did anything when the truth behind the CIA in Benghazi, Libya arming Al-Quaeda in Syria came out, now, all of a sudden we have to do something the "WORLD IS WATCHING".
We don't have to do anything our enemies are killing each other.

Anonymous said...

I guess there are no REAL problems in the world including the killing of thousands of innocent people by a power-hungry tyrant. The only real problem in the world is republican political fights with Democrats because they lost the Presidency? So everything that happens in the world is less important than this on-going fight? Get real. Given the republican track record, it may be decades before republicans have control of the Oval office again.

Anonymous said...

Those innocents cheered when the WTC fell. Get real.

miaexile said...

O joy to finally have something I completely disagree with Chris Hayes, Rachel and g.o.d...there is 1 point to make and 1 point only-the use of chem weapons is banned and Assad broke the ban and so let the drones and fighter jets send him a message..that's all Obama is asking for. No 2 bit dictator should be allowed to get away with using chem. weapons, on his or her own people or anyone else's people. Fer chrissakes, we're using drones in other places without all the hooptydo. I do not see it as a foothold into our next war at all. I do not see it as " helping the poor Syrian's" victimized by Assad. I see it as a global message that the use of chem weapons will not be tolerated.

Anonymous said...

Handing a Nobel peace price to a undeserving novice was bad thinking, but accepting it without merit was the height of bad judgement. But in a nation that has no qualms of printing any amount of $$$$$$$ to paper over the problems du jour, it's quit logical it would make up it's own wars.
Interference interschmirence, Russian leaders have not forgotten how the west jumped at the chance to exploit Russian resources after the sowjet collapse. Thanks to that action we have now Putin who is no puddle to no one.
In the end, Syrians have to sort out there differences among themselves, just as is finally now happening in Iraq. The US was no fun place for many since it's inception all the way to the freedom marches. That it sorted it's differences without resorting to chemical weapons did not make it any less violent.
I know it's painful to watch Syria lately, but if the US had any authority to straighten out any country, Haiti would be a shining democratic and prosperous State today.

Anonymous said...

It is our watch. We can't stand by while thousands of innocent people are killed.

Meteorite said...

Please, innocent people die in Africa every day and we stand by and watch them get killed. Darfur, Rwanda, you name it. We need to stay out of Syria! Stop the War mongering. We screwed up Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan. The only one that has peace is Vietnam and that's because they won!

Anonymous said...

Castro and his sidekick "El Che" killed thousands of Cubans (goolgle El Paredon) and the USA did nothing. BTW, Cuba is only 90 miles away.

Anonymous said...

the reason there was no intervention with Cuba, is that there is no oil there. (you have to google El Paredon Cuba). Thousands killed by firing squads, under El Che's orders. No jury, no courts, just killings daily. This was also under USA's watch.