President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry tried goading Americans into supporting military action against Syria by dubbing Bashar al-Assad another Hitler. That sales pitch didn’t work, mainly because while Assad is evil so are most of his civil war enemies. The whole war fervor died down to a very low murmur when Russia stepped in to broker a deal by which Syria would supposedly destroy its chemical weapons arsenal.
Russia and Syria are two of the least trustworthy regimes on the planet, but we’re not supposed to worry about that. We’re supposed to believe them both when they report that Syria is destroying its chemical weapons.
A new Rasmussen poll reveals just how weak Obama’s hand is now on the whole question of dealing with the brutal regime. Both brutal regimes, actually.
Thirty-two percent (32%) of Likely U.S. Voters believe it’s at least somewhat likely that Syria will destroy all its chemical weapons capabilities on schedule as promised, including just eight percent (8%) who say it’s Very Likely. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey shows that 58% think Syria is not likely to eliminate all of its chemical weapons on schedule, with 24% who say it’s Not At All Likely to do so. Ten percent (10%) aren’t sure. (To see survey question wording, click here.)
That same poll finds that even if Assad doesn’t live up to his fake deal, just 26% of Americans favoring using the US military against him.
The rush to war in Syria never made a lot of sense on its own. President Obama had issued his chemical weapons “red line” a year prior, and had then ignored evidence that chemical weapons had been used a few times, by both sides, in Syria’s civil war. But suddenly in September 2013, while denying that he ever issued a red line, there was Barack Obama the Nobel Peace Prize winner trying to goad Americans to support a war that would clearly assist the Muslim Brotherhood and al Qaeda against an evil but secular dictator. America’s only interest in that fight is the same interest a Cowboys fan has when the Giants and Redskins play each other — you want both to lose somehow, or at least lose key players in the fray.
Obama probably expected the left to support him because they support everything he does, while the hawkish right would support him because — in his mind — we just support every war that comes along. That’s true for John McCain, but not for those of us who realized that attacking Assad would help the Brotherhood and various and sundry jihadist armies that had set about attacking Christians before they had even overthrown Assad. Throw in the fact that Obama and Kerry aren’t exactly Grant and MacArthur types, and that the hapless Chuck Hagel would be leading DoD, and this war was one worth sitting out. No American should be asked to die for whatever it was that Obama had in mind.
In retrospect, it’s worth pointing out that the push to war came in September 2013, the weeks leading up to October 1. On that date, Healthcare.gov went live and Obamacare swung into action. The Obama administration clearly knew that the rollout was going to be a mess, because it’s own vendors were issuing internal warnings, security had not been properly tested, it was failing load tests, and because from the president on down they knew that “If you like your healthcare, you can keep your healthcare” was a massive lie just waiting to be exposed.
Am I questioning the timing of the push to engage in a war in Syria in which no clear-cut American interests were ever at stake? You make the call.