Daily Kos
Political analysis and other daily rants on the state of the nation

Thursday | April 17, 2003

Syria countermoves, scores against US

The US continues its bizarre on-again, off-again war of words against Syria. Seriously, do a Google News search for "Syria" and "US", and get headlines like:

No Plans for war on Syria: US
US renews its attack on Syria
US 'would enter Syria for Saddam'
US will not cross Syrian border to hunt Saddam 
So who the hell knows who will come out ahead what is obviously a power-struggle at the top of the Bush Administration.

But Syria is more self-assured than Saddam's sanction-weakend Iraq -- not driven by ethnic divisions, not in violation of UN resolutions, possessing a strong and relatively modern military, effective control of various battle-tested milita/terrorist groups, strong support from Russia and Iran, a reluctant and suddenly gun-shy UK, and the sudden de facto leadership of the Arab world (a position Syria obviously relishes).

And while Iraq wielded the propaganda tool clumsily, Syria is proving a far better foe. It's latest move, tactically brilliant, is to introduce a Security Council resolution calling for the elimination of all WMDs in the Middle East.

The move comes as some in the US side scream about Syria's alleged WMDs. Thus Syria's move is nothing short of genius. If the US is truly serious about ridding the Middle East of WMDs, it should have no problem endorsing a resolution that would compell Syria to disarm. Right?

Wrong. The resolution would have the (intentional) effect of forcing Israel to surrender its nuclear arsenal -- a course of action Israel would never accept. And the US, Israel's most loyal ally, will thus be forced to veto the resolution.

So picture this -- the US vetoing a resolution calling for the banning of all WMDs from the Middle East. In one fell swoop, Syria has negated the charges of WMDs against it, exposed the US's hypocrisy on WMDs (our allies can have them, everyone else can't), solidified its leadership of the Arab world, and forced the US to veto a seemingly common sense resolution, after blasting France and Russia for threatening vetoes on Iraq.

It's clear that this administration has zero ability to wage a competent foreign policy. We may be able to wage war, but even that has its limits.

Posted April 17, 2003 12:32 AM | Comments (166)


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