Four Points on Syria

1. “Internal” Separation of Powers. Forget whether President Obama went through Congress, or the Security Council, or even our NATO friends. The real question is if the Administration wants to prevent atrocities in Syria, why turn to the Navy? Isn’t this the job of the Atrocities Prevention Board?

2. More Evidence of Evolution.

Barack Obama put the Bush era decisively behind him today in a speech to the United Nations in which he rejected unilateralism in favour of countries working together to tackle problems ranging from the Middle East to Iran and North Korea.

… At the heart of his speech, he promised to work with the UN in a way that Bush had not.
From 2009.

And in 2008: “President-elect Barack Obama on Monday emphasized diplomacy, internationalism and alliances as he laid out a national security outlook far from President George W. Bush’s more unilateral approach..”

3. I do not understand the obsession with chemical weapons. It is a grisly way to kill people. So are machetes. I assume the only reasons the Syrian rebels aren’t using them (if they are not) are technical: they make the hearts and livers taste bad afterwards.

4. The most damaging news from Britain yesterday was that Assad had used such weapons 14 times. If true, it is hard to imagine the deterrent or punitive message a U.S. attack now could serve. First baker’s dozen of gassings come free? For weapons of mass destruction, 13 is a lucky number?


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