Does anyone believe this?
When asked by Fox News’s Chris Wallace whether he would delay Congress’s vote to consider a Russian proposal for the Assad regime to give up chemical weapons, the president said, “there’s a reason why I slowed this down to allow for a congressional debate.” He also said he requested authorization from Congress because Syria did not pose a “direct and imminent” threat to the United States, though he believed he had authority to act regardless.
What he’s basically saying here is, there’s time for Congress to yammer while people are dying! There’s mixed messages, and then there’s the industrial grade blender that Obama puts his messages through.
Barack Obama has a handful of massive foreign policy messes on his hands, largely of his own making, in Egypt and Libya. His little “reset” with Russia is also a proven failure, and his outreach to the “reformer” Assad isn’t working too well. These messes all relate either to his malevolence, which is an active question, or to his hubris: Barack Obama really thought that his election would solve everything. Magic! He can’t blame Congress for any of them, but he’d sure like to.
Syria is different. Obama painted the red line, then tried to scrape it off while he hoped no one was looking. Now he’s stuck with it and rapidly losing support everywhere. He went to Congress to spread the blame around for whatever does or doesn’t happen in Syria, and buy time for a way out. Now John Kerry’s bumbling around has turned out to offer that way out. He and Harry Reid are really really hoping that it works. The Senate’s vote is delayed.
Who cares if Syria’s Christians keep dying at the hands of al Qaeda and al Nusra? Obama may have his way out, and that’s what counts.