Friday, August 30, 2013
Does This Sound Like War, Playground Rules?
Anyone skeptical about the wisdom of an American attack on Syria should consider the options sketched out by former Obama deputy assistant secretary of state, Suzanne Nossel. Seriously, this sounds like war waged by playground rules. It begins with a show of force, a cruise missile strike.
What happens afterwards, though, is anybody's guess.
"They don't want to do something that could look like an empty gesture," says Suzanne Nossel, who served as a deputy assistant secretary of state during Obama's first term.
"They'll wait for a reaction. Does Assad step it up with the rhetoric - 'you failed in Iraq, you failed in Vietnam'? Or does he take the beating?"
If the Assad regime decides to ratchet things up, Mr Obama has an array of options - none of them good.
"The range is, you do nothing - all the way up to large-scale air and ground campaigns to remove the Assad regime," says Mr [Kalev] Sepp, [senior lecturer at the US Naval Postgraduate School].
"You can send in special forces to train and organise the rebels. But it's impossible to do that clandestine. So then you have to have Americans on the ground - and they're being killed. Is that worth overthrowing the Assad regime for?"
So, if Assad just takes the beating like a good Arab, then maybe that's it. If he gets uppity, Obama gonna open a can of whupass on him. These people sound like a bunch of nine-year-olds ginning for a playground scuffle.