Stephen Walt wonders: “Is Barack Obama More of a Realist Than I Am?” While Stephen Kinzer praises his “canny anti-interventionism,” and Syrian prodemocracy activist, Qusai Zakaria, assails him for his failure to punish Assad back in 2013 for launching the notorious chemical weapons attack against the civilian populations in the Damascene suburbs of Moadamieh and Ghoutah.
And why not? After all, the first myriad instances of poison gas use got the regime a much needed break with the international community, and served to re-legitimate itself? So, why not go down that road again? The possibility of taking action against the Assad regime at this stage is next to nothing. It, Iran, and its other tools and allies, seem to have been a carte blanche to reshape the entire region whatever the cost involved. Whether this is the intention of the Obama Administration, or a simple byproduct of its apathy, is beside the point.
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers to CNN: “If you were ever going to get a deal for a peace deal, a cease-fire, that got screwed up.” —- Indeed by considering the conflict in Syria solely from the visor of a deal with Iran and the issue of chemical weapons, the Obama Administration re-legitimized the Assad regime and undermined all serious efforts for peace in the country. The best that Geneva 2 could achieve now is lowering the intensity of the conflict.
Brief History of A Major Fuckup, but not that anyone involved has shown any signs of remorse: the regime keeps killing with an even greater dose of impunity (albeit by other means), the opposition keeps faltering and fragmenting in a dizzying display of incompetence, and the Obama Administration is still leading events from the devil’s “behind,” or wherever the Hell they remain stuck – surely a cold and dark place reserved from the amoral bastards of history.