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Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Kerry's Middle East Delusions

by JASmius

Did you ever wonder what color the sky is on Kerryworld?  I, for one, cannot even begin to venture a guess:

Critics are "dead wrong" that Barack Obama's "nonstrike" at Syria after drawing a "red line" at the Assad regime's use of chemical weapons irreparably damaged U.S. credibility, Secretary of State John Kerry insisted Tuesday.

In a wide-ranging interview on MSNBC's Morning Joe, Kerry said he could "understand the misunderstanding."

"I accept that friends of ours that the president's nonstrike impacted perceptions about us," he said. "I believe they are dead wrong, and I think the critics are dead wrong… The president made his decision to strike. He announced his decision to strike publicly. And the purpose of the strike was to get the chemical weapons out of Syria."

Which the "strike" would not have accomplished in any case.  Only a ground invasion of Syria would have made that happen.

But when you make a decision to strike, and publicly announce that decision, and then cravenly back out of it, how can that not detrimentally impact your credibility?

Simple, says Lurch: It's all the Republicans' fault:

But Kerry said as members of Congress demanded the administration "ask permission" for any strike in Syria, "lo and behold, unbeknownst to everybody on the Thursday before the weekend we were going to strike, David Cameron went to the [British] Parliament and lost the vote."

"How in the wake of Britain's Parliament deciding 'no' in a democratic fashion with congressmen screaming 'you've got to come to us' can the president decide to stiff democracy in America and say 'no'?" Kerry asked.

Oh, I don't know, Johnny, it seems to me that your boss is more than willing to "act unilaterally" when the cause and situation suits him.  In the case of Syria, he was bluffing, and then Bashar al-Assad called that bluff, and O wasn't willing to follow through and make good on his threats.  Thus forfeiting his credibility.  Which is, of course, in keeping with the Obama Doctrine ("an America reduced to the level of the rest of the world").  Superpowers need credibility, after all; gigantic Luxembourgs do not.

But can we take from the following that U.S. military personnel might be put under Russian command:

In the interview, Kerry also stressed in talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, both the United States and Russia agree on "some fundamental principles" for Syria – and insisted the war-wracked country can be "saved."

"There was agreement that Syria should be a unified country, united, that it needs to be secular, that ISIS needs to be taken on, and that there needs to be a managed transition," he said.

"You cannot bring peace to Syria as long as [Bashar] Assad is there. If you can resolve this transition of Assad, it is absolutely possible" to work with Russia to defeat ISIS, Kerry said.

Which cannot be resolved, because Putin, just as with Ali Khamenie, is a stout ally and sponsor of Boy Assad, something he and they have already made abundantly clear.

What I cannot help wondering about is how Lavrov looks at Kerry's delusional ramblings.  That's a forfeiture of a whole lot more than just U.S. credibility; if I were the Russians and Iranians, I'd be wondering if there were a single sane human being in the entire United States government.

I would also move quickly to fully exploit and take advantage of this gaping window of opportunity while I could.  Which is precisely what Czar Vlad is doing.

Last Kerry quote:

But in his interview, Kerry said he also spoke with Putin at the end of the leaders' meeting about joint efforts to fight ISIS.

"He said to me very directly … '. I will think about that'," Kerry said. "[T]his is not easy for Putin. … Putin is there now. And if he wants to fight ISIS alone that's a challenge, folks. And if he does fight [ISIS] alone how does it work out for Russia to have sided with Assad, sided with Iran, sided with Hezbollah when they are trying to reach out to the rest of the Sunni world in the region. That's not a good equation for Russia."

Actually, it's a great equation for Russia: their allies (the ayatollahs and Boy Assad) will be supported and entrenched more than ever, thus advancing Russia's sphere of influence in the Middle East that Barack Obama deliberately ceded to Putin; and the Islamic State will be crushed, as Putin, unlike Obama, will not hesitate to do.

Beholding John Kerry's flights of delusional fancy reminds me of a George Carlin punchline: "Remember, hire the handicapped; but don't let them take your rectal temperature".

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