In a remarkable op-ed today in the New York Times, Russian President Vladimir Putin made his American counterpart look like a fool. When Obama needlessly addressed the nation the other day explaining that a military strike on Syria is only postponed, he claimed, responding to unjustness and cruelty in particular when children are gassed to death, “That’s what makes America different. That’s what makes us exceptional.” He could not be farther from truth.
Putin describes the situation in Syria in a much more realistic way. Right now, it is not or no longer about democracy. It’s not about a cruel dictatorship and rebels fighting for a self-determination, a better life and dignity. It is brutal civil war with 100,000 killed people on both sides and millions on the run. With unclear factions including al-Qaeda. It is right now even still unclear whether Bashar al-Assad had ordered the massacre in Ghouta last month. Putin’s smart maneuver, proposing getting all chemical weapons in Syria under international control and ultimately destroy them, and Obama’s fast turning in tells volumes about his lost leadership. In fact, since Obama has not got a shred of support domestically and abroad, it saved him for the time being from complete defeat; the most isolated American president in history. Obama promised,
“I have, therefore, asked the leaders of Congress to postpone a vote to authorize the use of force while we pursue this diplomatic path. I’m sending Secretary of State John Kerry to meet his Russian counterpart on Thursday, and I will continue my own discussions with President Putin. I’ve spoken to the leaders of two of our closest allies, France and the United Kingdom, and we will work together in consultation with Russia and China to put forward a resolution at the U.N. Security Council requiring Assad to give up his chemical weapons, and to ultimately destroy them under international control. We’ll also give U.N. inspectors the opportunity to report their findings about what happened on August 21st. And we will continue to rally support from allies from Europe to the Americas — from Asia to the Middle East — who agree on the need for action.” (Emphasis added.)
It wont be possible in a short period of time. In the midst of a civil war. With al-Qaeda keen to get hold of poison gas. But what is more important, why not take this unique moment in time and get international control over chemical weapons in Israel as Noam Chomsky had suggested yesterday? To eventually get the whole Middle East free from WMD.
12 September 2013 @ 3:03 pm.
Last modified September 12, 2013.