Community Organizer-in-Chief Dis-Organized on Syria
Imagine your humble blogger’s surprise to learn this weekend that the Obama Administration has been stumbling over yet another foreign policy issue. Can this man organize anything other than a reelection campaign? The on-going ineptitude of this purported “community organizer” as documented by Adam Entous and his colleagues at the Wall Street Journal is simply mindboggling. (all block quotes credit “Inside Obama’s Syria Debate” Wall Street Journal 3/2913)
[The Obama] administration, under pressure from lawmakers and allies, has only taken halting steps to help provide training, equipment and intelligence to moderate rebel fighters.
That incremental shift is the product of a wrenching, behind-the-scenes debate… [which] has been slowed by internal divisions, miscalculations and bureaucratic inertia.
To be fair, we have to remember that the President has been busy exposing what happened in Benghazi.
The most engaged U.S. effort thus far comes from the CIA, which is working with European and Arab spy services to provide intelligence, training and logistical support to select rebel groups, according to U.S., European and Arab officials.
Critics within the administration and in the Syrian opposition say the administration’s reluctance to arm moderate groups has strengthened Islamist fighters who could dominate the country when the regime falls.
So, once again, the Obama Administration is helping Islamists, this time by literally doing nothing. Great.
Senior officials who wanted the U.S. to do more, particularly at the State Department, grew frustrated with the White House, according to current and former officials.
The administration committee charged with Syria policy was kept on a tight leash… participants say. [Obama] had the committee focus mostly on post-Assad planning.
I’m starting to suspect the President may have embellished his “community organizer” credentials just a wee bit.
Likewise, high-level White House national security meetings on Syria focused on what participants called “strategic messaging,” how administration policy should be presented to the public, according to current and former officials who took part in the meetings.
Obama focused on “storytelling,” why does that has a ring of truth to it?
Advocates of intervening faced another hurdle: administration lawyers. Lawyers at the White House and departments of Defense, State and Justice debated whether the U.S. had a “clear and credible” legal justification under U.S. or international law for intervening militarily.
Keep in mind these are the same lawyers who, whether you agree with it or not, are able to justify drone executions of American citizens on foreign soil. Was all their lawyerly creativity exhausted on the drone issue?
At a congressional hearing in February, Republican Sen. John McCain, who has long advocated intervening to protect Syrian civilians and arm rebels, asked then Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and Gen. Dempsey if they had supported the Petraeus-Clinton proposal to arm the rebels. Both men said yes.
The answer infuriated the White House, which didn’t want to put a spotlight on internal divisions and the options privately presented to Mr. Obama.
See “strategic messaging”, above.
As the administration debated what to do, the death toll in Syria soared, from 4,000 in late 2011 to nearly 70,000 now, according to U.N. estimates.
How many more people have to die before Obama does something? Show of hands now, don’t be shy, who among you actually re-elected this guy?