Belmont Club

The Apple of Discord

The Daily Caller has an article suggesting that Bill Clinton is worried that Hillary is being measured for a frame. “With tensions between President Obama and the Clintons at a new high, former President Bill Clinton is moving fast to develop a contingency plan for how his wife, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, should react if Obama attempts to tie the Benghazi fiasco around her neck, according to author Ed Klein.”

Klein said relations between the Clintons and President Obama have reached a new low, most recently with Obama ignoring Bill Clinton’s offer to help him and Vice President Joe Biden prepare for the debates with the Republican ticket …

Added Klein: “His fury turned to deep concern when the Benghazi business unfolded because he was deeply troubled by the appearance that the White House was going to throw Hillary under the bus, which in fact it appears it is doing.”

Just intrigue by Klein or another example of the old saw, “where there’s smoke there’s fire”?

Michael Walsh at the National Review Corner thinks they’re going to need a bigger bus. The number of people being measured for a frame continue has grown fascinatingly long.

Now, it seems, that Team Obama has decided to try and save U.N. ambassador Susan Rice — whose reputation in the IC could hardly be lower — and perhaps press secretary Jay Carney as well by tossing the nation’s spooks under the bus, in which direction they’re also nudging Hillary Clinton.

But you can’t burn all your friends, and the Obama forces already have a lot fewer allies than they think they do. The disrespectful way they treated former White House chief of staff William Daley is likely to come back to haunt them in the graveyards of Chicago, and the bad blood between them and the Clintons hasn’t gone away, despite Bill’s bonhomie at the convention.

Walter Russell Mead doesn’t think that feeding Hillary to the wolves will sate their hunger for very long. “Libya looks like it was a perfect storm for the administration. A humanitarian intervention that never had a lot of support in the United States had not only failed to create a peaceful and stable democratic Libya; it was also increasingly clear that al-Qaeda and other terror groups were becoming much stronger in the chaos following the U.S.-led attack on Qaddafi.”

But maybe Walsh and Mead are wrong. Whaddya mean you can’t burn all your friends? All you need is enough wood and a steady supply of matches. And besides Hillary’s carcass will keep the buzzards fed for a while and as long as the smoke and fire stay overseas Obama’s press flacks can probably keep the flames from licking too near the White House. The great danger for President Obama is if al-Qaeda’s resurgence in North Africa and the Middle East leads to a successful attack on the US homeland. The second worst scenario would be if the the ‘Arab Spring’ sets off a war in the Middle East that impacts Israel.

One area of great concern to the administration is the massive Syrian stockpile of chemical weapons, one so massive it is almost a counterweight to Israeli nukes. The LA Times reports:

The scope of the Syrian chemical weapons program and the international community’s failure to craft a cohesive plan to stop the fighting confront Western military strategists with the need to plan for a worst-case scenario rather than act to prevent it, analysts say. That means preparing allies in the region to launch a massive rapid-deployment operation after the Assad regime collapsed but before Al Qaeda-aligned fighters or rogue elements of the Syrian rebels could get their hands on the WMD.

Doing that successfully will take 75,000 US troops according to a former special forces officer who testified before Congress.

The U.S. special forces sent to Amman are probably training Jordanian troops in containment techniques and checking their equipment and chemical-biological hazard protection and practices, said Steven Bucci, a former Army Green Beret officer and senior Pentagon official who is now a research fellow in defense and domestic security at the Heritage Foundation.

“They will probably be running them through training procedures for dealing with this stuff to secure it and get it under control or to respond to it if it gets used” in a calamitous last battle, said Bucci. “This is about the best use of our military we could have now, and hopefully we’re also helping out the Turks.”

Bucci testified to Congress in July that even a limited operation to secure Syria’s chemical weapons would require more than 75,000 troops — and many more if launched amid the civil war now raging.

It is “not a viable option” to commit masses of U.S. ground troops to such an operation, Bucci told the House Committee on Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation and Trade. Any effective force, he said, would have to involve troops from allied Muslim countries also at risk of attack with Syria’s chemical weapons.

Nope. Not with Iraq gone and the Army in Afghanistan. If things really go south in Syria the US will helplessly watch al-Qaeda grab the huge chemical stockpile. But what — besides hoping it won’t happen — can the Obama Administration do to head it off?

  • Blame Hillary
  • Blame Bush
  • Blame a video
  • Lead from the fron

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