Saturday, April 8, 2017

Striking Syria: Right AND Stupid?

Thursday night with Trump’s authorization, the US military lobbed some missiles at an airfield in Syria. This was in response to Syrian president Assad’s use of chemical weapons against his own people.


Question: Did Trump do the right thing or was this a stupid thing to do?


Answer: Yes.


As in, yes, it was the right thing to do AND yes, it was a stupid thing to do.


OK, let’s work on that knot for a bit.


Back in 2013, then President Obama kind of screwed up Syria by making a big deal that America would come down on Assad’s ass if he used chemical weapons on his own people. Well, Assad used chemical weapons on his own people and American did not come down on his ass. Part of the problem was Obama was (no surprise here) getting fuck all in the way of support from Congress. (Yes, some of the same Republicans who criticized Obama for wanting to shoot missiles at Assad’s death dealing regime praised Trump for shooting missiles at Assad’s death dealing regime.) But Obama dithered on the subject and decided not to press the point, deciding there was no real gain from shooting missiles at Assad’s death dealing regime.


The result was a major blow to American credibility in the region. No, Obama was right in his assessment. There was no upside from America shooting missiles at Assad’s death dealing regime. But he had made a big deal of telling Assad, “you use chemical weapons, I’m gonna come in there and put my thing down.”


Don’t let your mouth write checks your butt can’t cash. Because, sometimes, somebody does something so bad, you have no choice but to lob a few dozen damn Tomahawk missiles at their evil ass.


Trump saw the pictures, of men, women, children, babies even…suffering and dying as a result of chemical warfare. “No child of God should have to suffer like that,” Trump said. (Damn, I hate when I have to agree with Trump. But in that, yes, I do.)  “So let’s to lob a few dozen damn Tomahawk missiles at Assad’s evil ass!” 


So right thing to do.


AND… stupid too.


What do we do now? Do we follow up with more military attacks? More missiles? Actual soldiers on the blood soaked sands of Syria? What happens if we actually drive Assad from power? Who will replace him? You know some of the guys fighting against Assad’s death dealing regime are affiliated with Al Qaida? And ISIS? Oooh boy. 


And let’s not forget the Russians. Putin likes Assad. He gives good back rubs after Putin’s tough day of shirtless horse riding. 


I can’t help but think that Trump and his team haven’t thought through to the other side of this action.

For a guy who doesn't do nuance, Trump has himself a bit of a pickle. Because, he's done something that is both right AND stupid.

Two politics posts in one day? Man, we need some relief!

Tomorrow is Sunday which is Doctor Who day here on the blog thing.

Until next time, remember to be good to one another.  

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