Foreign and Defense Policy, Middle East and North Africa

The Obama Administration Notices Syria

Apparently Assad can’t kill fast enough to stop the opposition in Syria. Despite the murder of more than 100 of “his” people on Sunday, the Syrian dictator doubled down yesterday, with security forces raiding mosques, bombing crowds that had gathered to protest his rule during the holy month of Ramadan, and killing another two dozen Syrians.

Meanwhile, back in the capital of the free world, the Obama administration appears to be stirring ever so slightly from its policy of indifference. Today, SecState Hillary Clinton is meeting with members of the Syrian opposition after having refused to do so for the last few months. The administration has also again promised to take a good, hard look at new sanctions, after promising last month to take a good, hard look at new sanctions and doing nothing.

Most notably, we will have an opportunity to ourselves take a good, hard look at the administration’s non-policy with today’s confirmation hearing for U.S. ambassador to Syria Robert Ford. (Ford was recess appointed last year after senators objected to the administration’s attempted warm up with Damascus.) Ford, who is caught between a Congress that is demanding the United States do more and an administration that prefers to do less, is the man in the middle. He has done more than his boss, Clinton, and traveled to Hama in early July to stand with the opposition. But presumably he was also the man who informed both the president and Clinton’s view that Assad could be a “reformer,” as the president so memorably suggested. No matter what, he will have the opportunity to defend both his own record and the administration’s increasingly unpopular stand. And then the Senate will have the chance to decide whether or not we should have an ambassador in Damascus.

5 thoughts on “The Obama Administration Notices Syria

  1. Isn’t it sad/telling that in 2011 we are cheering America’s slight stir from policy of indifference when it comes to helping the people held by ruthless thugs? Where is the US that stood against totalitarian rulers only a decade ago? What’s happened to the country that once kicked butt? How sad! 2009-2013 (I am assuming Obama will be defeated in 2012) will be remembered as the dark years for freedom and prosperity around the world.

  2. >Isn’t it sad/telling that in 2011 we are cheering America’s slight stir from policy of indifference when it comes to helping the people held by ruthless thugs?

    Not really — why should we do anything. It is not our problem.

  3. Don’t worry, Winston. I have a feeling Obama will slowly gear up on his opposition to Assad. He’ll include speeches to bring most of America to the same position. Then he’ll propose that we tale military action through Congres… lolololololol.

    Could not keep it straight thru that stuff about Obama doing anything right, sorry.

    Obama will toss attacks at Assad if it will help his reelection. If it is resolved before, then he’ll take credit for it. That’s his pattern so far.

    Remeber, it’s not about the people in Syria, it’s about the One.

  4. in your view, only Iran and Syria are dictatorship, but Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, UAE, etc. are free societies. because they obey your commands. you know that suadis sent their forces to supress the bahrainis, but US government closed its eyes. you should know that iran and syria are the “axis of resistance”. the relation between iran and syria relates to strategic calculations. allah is great.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>