Keeping the Dogs of War Leashed
“Who cares HOW we avoided a war and got a dictator to give up his chemical weapons, if we avoided a war and got
a dictator to give up his chemical weapons?”
This was Jon Stewart’s assessment of the news that Syria might relent and work with Russia and US Secretary of State John Kerry to hand over its chemical weapons, avoiding US military intervention.
Vladimir Putin, who keeps Edward Snowden on a leash and lets members of a riotous girl band rot in jail, has thrown President Obama a lifeline. The Russian president had coldly brushed back Obama on Snowden and Syria, and only last week called John Kerry a liar.
Now, when it is clear Obama can’t convince a Congress who would like to kick the Sarin can down the road, and the American public, his own wife, the world, Liz Cheney or even Donald “Shock and Awe” Rumsfeld to bomb Syria — just a teensy-weensy bit — Pooty-Poot (as W. called him) rides, shirtless, to the rescue, offering him a face-saving way out.
If it were a movie, we’d know it was a trick. We can’t trust the soulless Putin — his Botox has already given the former KGB officer even more of a poker face. But by Tuesday, Putin the Peacemaker was setting conditions.
Just as Obama and Kerry — with assists from Hillary and some senators — were huffing and puffing that it was their military threat that led to the breakthrough, Putin moved to neuter them, saying they’d have to drop their military threat before any deal could proceed. The administration’s saber-rattling felt more like knees rattling.
Where the mindlessly certain W. adopted a fig leaf of diplomacy to use force in Iraq, it seems the mindfully uncertain Obama is adopting a fig leaf of force to use diplomacy in Syria.
The bumbling approach had climaxed with an off-the-cuff remark by Kerry, hitting a rough patch in the role of a lifetime during a London press conference Monday: he offered to forgo an attack if Assad turned over “every single bit of his chemical weapons to the international community.”
A State Department spokeswoman walked back Kerry’s slip, but once the White House realized it was the only emergency exit sign around, Kerry walked it back, claiming at a Congressional hearing Tuesday that he did not “misspeak.”
On Tuesday, Stewart brought up Obama’s first declaration of the Syrian “red line” (“the campaign promise Obama’s decided to keep”) as an “offhand hypothetical statement,” before touting Kerry as a “Magoo-esque accidental genius” who was somehow able to “bumble-fuck” his way into coming up with an actual solution about handing over chemical weapons.
Stewart was astonished that “Syria is taking him up on his dickish offer!”
There was no celebrating at Fox News.
The network quickly went into shame-spin cycle, characterizing the development as embarrassing and giving Russia the upper hand in our never-ending global pissing contest.
Stewart had some choice words for the media coverage of the Syria crisis– from Wolf Blitzer trying to create a magic moment with Obama to Fox News’ knee-jerk opposition to Obama– crystallized in a short little hyperbolic rant Stewart delivered:
“I get that Fox opposes the Syria peace plan because its modus operandi is to foment dissent in the form of a relentless, irrational contrarianism to Barack Obama and all things Democratic to advance its ultimate objective of creating a deliberately misinformed body politic whose fear, anger, mistrust and discontent is the manna upon which it sustains its parasitic, succubus like existence, BUT…
Sorry, I blacked out for a second… Was I saying something?”
* * * * * * * *
(Via Mediaite, YouTube, Huffington Post, Humboldt Sentinel and the NYT)