US Allies in the Middle East Quietly Shake Their Heads
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  • Pete

    ” ….doing nothing is now by far the worst option.”

    A most dubious assertion.

    • Corlyss

      Agree. If we do nothing on Syria, the world will still turn, the sun will rise in the east and set in the west, gravity will still operate. The biggest danger from doing nothing is the US resolve (such as it may be) regarding Iran is in doubt by everyone who matters, from enemies to allies. If we shoot our wad on Syria, after all the twists and turns and missteps, there will be NO, zero, stomach in Congress for an action against Iran which is far more important that the flyspeck that is Syria/Lebanon. If we let Syria go where the force of events takes it, we will still have at least some opportunity to deal with Iran, we’ll have a more unified Congress, and our “allies” in Europe are far more likely to support us.

    • Corlyss

      Agree. If we do nothing on Syria, the world will still turn, the sun will rise in the east and set in the west, gravity will still operate. The biggest danger from doing nothing in Syria is that it places in doubt US resolve (such as it may be) regarding Iran. Everyone who matters, from enemies to allies, will question our intent re: Iran. If we shoot our wad on Syria, after all the twists and turns and missteps, there will be NO, zero, stomach in Congress for an action against Iran which is far more important that the flyspeck that is Syria/Lebanon. If we let Syria go where the force of events takes it, we will still have at least some opportunity to deal with Iran, we’ll have a more unified Congress, and our “allies” in Europe are far more likely to support us.

      One of the things that intrigues me about the weekend developments is that Russia’s invasion of Georgia gave us Biden as a VP candidate because Obama thought it would bolster his ticket’s creds on foreign policy. Apparently he was indifferent (no surprise there – Val probably urged the choice) to the fact that Biden has been wrong on just about every major foreign policy confrontation for the last 25 years. I would have thought he would have been as strong a complement as Chaney was to Bush’s foreign policy navvy. I guess Joe told Barry, “do whatever Val says . . . ” That troika is about as useless as udders on a boar.

  • MarkE

    Check-mate in two moves. What a pitiful failure of the Obama Administration’s Middle Eastern strategy (or lack of it). A better case was never made for grand strategy or for that matter any strategy.

    • bpuharic

      The war in Iraq nothwithstanding, of course. Mission accomplished….

  • bpuharic

    WRM looks, as usual, through the wrong end of the telescope

    If allies see our inaction in Syria as indicative of inaction in Iran, perhaps it’s because we have little skin in the game in Syria.

    That couldn’t be the reason, could it? Is Syria developing a nuke? Is it sending agents across the world to murder like Iran does? Is it trying to control the Iraqi regime?

    No to all of the above…but still the right insists we

    GOTTA SEND IN THE TROOPS!!

  • USNK2

    Why is Mr. Mead relying solely on Reuters to define “…how relations with Israel and Saudi Arabia have fared in light of the US’s largely reactive and rudderless policies…”
    ???
    What, no use for primary sources in VM-land?

  • Jacksonian_Libertarian

    Obama is deliberately damaging the America that he sees as to big and powerful, in accordance with his absurd anti-colonialist views. That both the Israeli’s and Saudi’s agree that the root problem isn’t in Syria, but rather in Iran. Proves that Obama isn’t even attacking the real problem, so failure is a given no matter what he does.

    • Corlyss

      I agree. The only nagging reservation in my mind is the old adage, “Never attribute to malice that which may be explained by stupidity.” And the only thing that makes me doubt the applicability of the old adage here is that so many of Obama’s stupid decisions just coincidentally jeopardize the US’ future in so many areas.

      • bpuharic

        Funny to watch the right, which destroyed our economy, killed 4400 US troops and blew 2 trillion dollar hole in the budget with the war in Iraq, talk about ‘jeopardizing’ our future.

    • bpuharic

      Anybody care to tell us how not going to war damages us? This paranoid hatred of Obama on the right is related to one factor.

  • Corlyss

    Michael Ledeen has an interesting attempt to plumb the reasons for the reversal.

    http://pjmedia.com/michaelledeen/2013/09/02/somethings-missing-here/?singlepage=true
    You can tell it’s a slow news summer holiday weekend . . .

  • TheCynical1

    If a leader has lost his credibility due to his ineptitude, is it not wishful thinking that doubling down on that same leader’s power and authority will make things any better.

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