Bolton on Obama’s Syrian Red-Line Dance
John Bolton, superlative rhetorician that he is, tells us how Obama’s red-line against Syrian chemical weapons use was less of a threat to Syria than a child’s rainy-day chalk mark on a sidewalk. (block quote credit John Bolton “Obama Put America in a Red-Line Box on Syria” Wall Street Journal 4/29/13)
Barack Obama has often warned Syrian leader Bashar Assad about chemical weapons: Wielding them, the president has said, would cross a “red line” and be a “game changer” for U.S. policy, “with enormous consequences.” His rhetoric has now crashed into reality.
The administration is hedging on how confident it is regarding the evidence of Assad’s transgressions.
[Obama’s] propensity for unthinking rhetoric instead of concrete action is not new.
But the president’s unfortunate behavior to date has already caused grave damage to his personal credibility internationally, and, far more serious, to that of the United States government.
What has changed, if Mr. Obama allows his red line to be crossed unanswered, is that his latest act of foreign-policy fecklessness provides further proof to Iran, North Korea and other adversaries, whether states or terrorists, that he is not a force to be reckoned with. The killing of Osama bin Laden is no rebuttal, since that master stroke was long in the making before Mr. Obama even imagined running for president.
Unfortunately, this wound to U.S. credibility is now part of Mr. Obama’s legacy. His successor will have to work hard to recover that credibility through real international leadership.
To sum up, the United States of America is not your grandparent’s Uncle Sam! Congrats to all who voted for Obama, even just the first time, for aiding and abetting the wussification of our once grand nation!