Friday Prayers caused another huge outpouring of protesters into the streets of Damascus and more importantly, Deraa, close to Djebel Druze in the Harran where disaffection with the central government has traditionally bubbled beneath the heterodox Druzi clans. But the Obama Administration to the mass murders, unlike Libya, has been characteristically limp-wristed:
The Obama administration hit three top Syrian officials as well as Syria's intelligence agency and Iran's Revolutionary Guard with sanctions over the crackdown.
Meanwhile, diplomats say the U.N.'s nuclear watchdog agency is setting the stage for potential U.N. Security Council action on Syria as it prepares a report assessing that a Syrian target bombed by Israeli warplanes in 2007 was likely a secretly built nuclear reactor meant to produce plutonium.
Also Friday, nations agreed to launch a U.N.-led investigation of Syria's crackdown, demanding that Damascus halt the violence, release political prisoners and lift media restrictions.
The Geneva-based Human Rights Council said it would ask the U.N. Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to send a mission to investigate "all alleged violations of international human rights law and to establish the facts and circumstances of such violations and of the crimes perpetrated."
This debacle is the product of a NSC advisor named Donilon who is several rungs below average, a slacker and mental layabout along the lines of the execrable Clapper, feckless head of the super Intelligence Agency, a dude who sports a double-digit IQ and a tendency not to follow the news.
The ever lenient NYT explains for the umpteenth time, the hidden wisdom behind an Administration's foreign policy which another more critical observer has called Obama a "Consequentialist", really a code name for everything is done on a case-by-case basis with no underlying strategy or agenda. As Lizza says in his New Yorker piece:
Obama’s aides often insist that he is an anti-ideological politician interested only in what actually works. He is, one says, a “consequentialist.”
Lizza later adds:Obama officials often expressed impatience with questions about theory or about the elusive quest for an Obama doctrine. One senior Administration official reminded me what the former British Prime Minister Harold Macmillan said when asked what was likely to set the course of his government: “Events, dear boy, events.”
Obama has emphasized bureaucratic efficiency over ideology, and approached foreign policy as if it were case law, deciding his response to every threat or crisis on its own merits. “When you start applying blanket policies on the complexities and merits of the current world situation, you’re going to get yourself in trouble,” he said in a recent interview with NBC News.
The clueless doofus in the Oval Office is already in trouble, with the Arab Spring throwing another iron bar in his mental house-of-cards. The Council on Foreign Relations seems to agree somewhat that Obama is way beyond his skill-set community-organizer background:
However well-intentioned Obama’s ad hoc approach might be, it has, as Lizza shows, sown confusion among friends and foes alike. What exactly are we hoping to accomplish overseas? What are our priorities and what are we willing to sacrifice to achieve them? How do we avoid letting events turn American foreign policy into, to borrow George W. Bush’s words, a “cork in a current”? Much like the case with domestic issues, Obama lacks a clear foreign policy narrative that answers these fundamental questions and gives his decisions coherence.
None of this is to say that Obama needs the sort of grand strategy that makes academics swoon. It is to say that presidents who shun guiding principles and priorities in favor of taking things as they come can find it difficult to lead–-and make it harder for others to follow.
Take away his bullhorn and the Obungler on foreign policy is as feckless as he is on economics---just an exhaler of hot air.