14
Sep
13

Obama: Please Proceed, Vlad

by @zizii2

If you read between the lines in Krauthammer’s recent spittle laced rant against Pres Obama on his Syria decision, you’ll realize just how earth-shatteringly PBO has upended Cold War residual thinking about the Middle East and power alignments. Of course Krauthammer is so blinded by bloodlust to obliterate Iran on behalf of Israel that he fails to see the tectonic shift at hand. Other teatards are so insecure that every Obama move is filtered through their castration anxieties. To them every US action must be a dick-waving exercise, even if such action results in us literally losing our limbs & heads. To them the Amurkin phallus MUST reign supreme even if it is just a severed appendage sputtering on a deserted battlefield.

****
But Krauthammer’s description of the historical lay of the land and power relations are accurate. There’s been longstanding opposition in Europe and among US ME allies about allowing the Soviet Union and later Russia any inch into the Eastern Mediterranean as a power player. Of course that ignored the fact that Russia as Assad’s patron ALREADY had a foothold. As a Dailykos commenter said:

“Russia was already in the Middle East: they are Assad’s backers. Now they’ve got a few “responsibilities” to match all their “rights.” Why the heck not?”

***

If anything’s been most consistent in President Obama’s foreign policy positions, it is his conviction that all nations MUST bear their responsibilities; that the US has been vilified enough by nations who hide behind platitudes yet foist off tangible action onto the US. Time to put up or shut up.

***

Now, whether you believe Pres Obama’s saber rattling was right or wrong, the fact is the prospect of military strikes, like Drano, unclogged the state of play in the 2.5 year old Syria civil war. And after 2.5 years of hiding behind the veto pen at the UN Security Council, Putin strutted out this time. The question is why? Hubris and/or fear?

***

***

Corporate media, neo-cons and those afflicted with Obama Derangement Syndrome settle on the facile idea that Putin seized initiative to show how manly he-manish he is to one-up Pres Obama on Syria. If it’s HUBRIS, then it means that in spite of discussions at G20 meeting in 2012 and this year, Putin mistakenly thought that PBO facing possible “humiliation” with a congressional No vote, would “lash” out with unilateral strikes as insecure US presidents in the past were wont to do. So he positioned himself as foil to PBO to score PR points.

***

The Emoleft’s Putin-loving-Assad-crowning position is summed up thus in Moon Over Alabama blog:

Russia is the clear strategic winner of the war on Syria. It is back as a power in the Middle East and has laid the base to stay there for quite some time. It has won major points in the global public opinion….

Syria and Syrians have won the war and lost a lot. It will take years to reintegrate the refugees, to rebuild and to let the wounds and deep rifts heal. Syria has also regained its independence. In 2014 Bashar al-Assad will likely be reelected as president of the Syrian Arab Republic and Syria’s history will remember him as a gracious ruler and as a hero.

The people of the United States have, for the first time in decades, stopped a war that their president wanted to pursue. That is a huge victory and a precedence. They should remember it well when the next manufactured war on this or that small country comes up. They have the power to stop it.

***

With this kind of rooting for a ruthless dictator and his equally ruthless patron, by the American extreme left that claims to stand for human rights and spews all manner of liberal mantra, it’s not surprising Putin might feel he’s on the ascent here.

But, if Putin really thought that US internal politics is what’s determining President Obama’s calculations (especially when it was PBO himself who knowing the depth of rancid politics still invited congressional input), then he is the BIGGEST FOOL on the planet. Pres Obama does not do appendage-waving. I suggest Putin and US teatards and the emoprogs who’ve slobbered over him all watch any Roadrunner/Wile-E-Coyote skit.

***

What I believe Pres Obama has handed over to Putin is a grenade with pin pulled. PBO can be that righteously RUTHLESS. His political adversaries often realize that fact after it’s too late. If Putin is in such a hurry to be International Statesman on Syria, I can imagine Pres Obama’s eyebrow half raised when Putin stepped up: “Oh yeah? Please Proceed, Vlad”. Why?

Immediately Pres Obama takes his Securing Chemical Weapon long term goal upfront and out of the equation altogether for ALL parties, while Putin thinks he’s got the glory and long-coveted Middle East Player status.  And like a wise parent does to a know-it-all adolescent insisting they be allowed to flex puffed up muscles, PBO steps out of Putin’s way.

***

In the long run, with Putin now claiming responsibility, Syria is gonna become Russia’s Afghanistan 2.0 on steroids. As Assad’s godfather, this responsibility will be a prolonged drain on Putin’s wallet. Short term he’ll profit by selling more conventional weapons to Assad, but that only enmeshes Putin deeper into the conflict in order to shore up Assad’s Sisyphean task, while having to expend more and more resources to fend off the never ending supply of Sunni Jihadi fighters let loose by Saudi Arabia into Syria, as well as forestall them running all over his southern lawn infecting the Caucasus any more than it already is.

***

Putin’s gonna learn fast not to tie one’s foreign policy to a mortal individual whose time is running out faster than the sand in an hourglass. There’s no one else to prop up in Syria if Assad falls, cuz all state power (and by extension Russia’s interests) resides in him and him alone, and so they have to keep him on life support no matter what. But he has no choice also because of his desire to use Gazprom to control Iranian gas imports into Europe while preventing Qatar’s gas pipeline from getting to Europe

Competing gas pipelines

***

There’s a reason Assad began using Chemical Weapons. Arithmetic. He is not only defending minority Alawite power under siege, but also facing lopsidedly increasing opposition population numbers despite killing thousands and pushing millions out as refugees. No matter what he was doing with his conventional weapons, his opposition was INCREASING in numbers with al-Qaeda forces pouring in by the thousands. Assad was fighting a dam with ALL sluicegates open. He had to use chemical weapons to neuter that growing threat. But like a drug he was gonna have to increase the dosage as more ruthless fighters came across the border. Now PBO gets that option taken off the table

***
So I posit that Putin acted out FEAR

****
What many pundits fail to realize is that, Russia fears both jihadists and the danger of CW falling in rebel hands (especially if Putin rightly or wrongly believed rebels DID use them on earlier occasions in the Syrian civil war) because of the proximity of war theater to Russia’s own restless southern Caucasus border. If Russia believed Assad had total grip on the CW stockpiles, they would not have not budged now. As some on the Right have lamented, this is Pres Obama handing over responsibility of a part of the thorny Middle East to Putin. To which PBO likely says, and the problems with that is…?

***

For those more cynical, Obama ceding Syria to Putin, just frees the US to play more mischief from the sidelines if we choose, than if we were front and center responsible for Syria. It is why Assad is demanding as a condition to handing over CWs, that the US not arm the opposition. Ahem… as if the US cannot find many ways of skinning a cat. Meanwhile with Putin now babysitting a civil war, the US is now unencumbered by global haranguing to “do something”.

***

We can choose how to engage on our own terms, while defending our allies Israel, Turkey, Jordan, extending humanitarian aid, and keeping the “threat of military strike” card in our back pockets.
The immediate losers, unfortunately, in this are the Syrian civilians dying in the crosshairs. But I believe sooner or later Putin & Assad will quickly realize how untenable their posture is and will come crawling to the negotiating table for a political solution. Then I bet they’ll call us to come help them all hold hands? Or maybe not?

***

So while the likes of Moon Over Alabama, and the ever constipated Glen Ford (BlackAgendaReport) gloat over “defeat for Obama” I suggest they take off their hate-Obama-hate-America blinkers and let go of their fossilized Iraq obsessions. Try as they might to tar him with another president’s sins, BarackObama is NOT playing  the neo-con playbook that held fantasies of remaking the Middle East in our image.

***

Really, Obama-haters, believe President Obama when he says all he wants is to get Weapons of Mass Destruction of any kind, Nuclear, Chemical or other, out of circulation in a world that is increasingly going to be shaped by internecine conflicts such as we’re seeing in the Middle East and North Africa that are not anchored in big ideological powerplays of a bipolar world. He has said so several times. And he has acted on that basic principle at risk of thwarting warhawks in his own party and the opposition. Believe him. Then you will not have to contort yourselves into pretzels trying to fit his fluid actions meant to achieve his ultimate goals, into your distorted assumptions about him.

***

Big picturewise, this turn of events advances President Obama’s long-stated desire to get out of the ME and focus on Asia. He’s going there early next month to continue his agenda that he laid out in 2011 in Australia, that the United States is a “Pacific Power”. And he’s the “wimp”?

P.S.: What would you put in a thought bubble above Putin’s head in this pic from a Jan 2013 meeting on Syria?


193 Responses to “Obama: Please Proceed, Vlad”


  1. September 14, 2013 at 7:05 pm

    I just saw this fascinating piece by Jim Stuart http://jimstuartnewblog.blogspot.com/2013/09/reflections.html?spref=tw

    _______________

    Developmental psychologists call this level of consciousness integral, and tell us that less than 5% of the world has attained this consciousness level. Obama, I believe, is part of this small percentage of people who see things whole; who trust the complexity of events to reveal deep structures and patterns, not single point answers or finite solutions; who know with absolute conviction that truth is found not in resolving paradox, but living in its tensions; that flow and generative action requires letting go of ego; and that all people, at every developmental level have something important to say, even your adversaries and enemies, because the brain is not capable of 100% error. In the precise sense that I believe Jesus meant it in the Beatitudes – “Blessed are the peacemakers…”, Obama is a peacemaker, while also remembering that Jesus told us to be “Gentle as a dove, and shrewd as a serpent.”

    We see with the consciousness we have. That is perhaps why most commentators simply cannot see what Obama’s up to. They are looking for the binary juxtapositions: winner or loser; strong or weak; enemy or friend. The idea of engaging your enemy as the one and only way to find a solution for the conflict you both share an interest in – simply doesn’t compute; you can’t see it. Running parallel and entirely oppositional strategies simultaneously can also be hard to detect, especially if it hasn’t been openly declared. Letting your opponent/adversary/enemy get all the credit for whatever breakthrough is achieved – even going so far as to “plan a gaffe” that your Secretary of State will offer as a seemingly offhanded proposal, which can be accepted by your opponent in such a way that he gets all the credit – none of this makes sense to our pundits – that operational mode doesn’t compute – power is everything; the powerful are always the winners; never let your guard down; he who has the gold rules, etc, – so folks just cannot see it when something like what has just happened, occurs. And central to this: Obama truly does not care. He is not attached to being the “last man standing”; he is attached only to the result, to the outcome, to the vision – the North Star he has been following. You may not believe me, or really understand what the hell I am talking about. But this is what has just gone down, and the actions, the patterns, the apparent sudden reversals, the willingness to look the fool – all these are products of an integral consciousness. Obama is an integral leader.

    We now have a peacemaking template. It will be used a good bit in the next three years – first in Syria to eliminate their CW and get to a negotiated peace; then in Iran, where I am convinced the leadership will understand this as non-proliferation through peacemaking, and not through threatening or making war;

    • September 14, 2013 at 7:27 pm

      Wow, zizi, your post and this one are absolutely spot on. Obama’s brain is so far ahead of everyone they find it almost impossible to comprehend what he is thinking and how he sees the future. Once again I am so thankful to be alive with him as President. It is a pure joy to watch him work.

      This community is also amazing. We are blessed to be in community at this time. Thank you Chips for knowing when to bring in all these wonderful blog tyrants.

    • September 14, 2013 at 7:40 pm

      You wrote the best article about what was going on with PBO I can’t thank you enough. No in the so-called MSM or elsewhere could have laid it out like you did. Congrats. You really understand Pres. Obama. :)

    • September 14, 2013 at 8:44 pm

      Fortunately zizii we and, actually, millions do get this about President Obama. They may not get it ‘consciously’ but they get it. I think it is why he is such a magnet. You can’t fake what he’s got; what he is.

      And, for certain, he’s earned that Noble Prize more than once, already.

      #TrustBarack

      • 31 HZ
        September 14, 2013 at 10:18 pm

        Speak it, Bobfr. So true, indeed. Thanks again for all that you do, Bobfr. Another brilliant writer and historian. I love this place, Chips.HZ

    • September 14, 2013 at 9:31 pm

      Zizi, you are brilliant and so enlightening you take my breath away. I wish you had a national forum to share your insights.

      • 33 nathkatun7
        September 14, 2013 at 11:06 pm

        Thank you Jackie G for expressing so well what I feel about Zizi’s post. I really feel so lucky to have been able to read two brilliant, back-to-back, posts by LL and Zizi! I am sharing them with every one I know. It’s the depth of their analyses and insights that are, sadly, non-exixtent in the mainstream media.

  2. September 14, 2013 at 7:05 pm

    Well done, Zizi! It’s an embarrassment of riches here at TOD. Congrats on first Layla :)

    The diplomatic breakthrough in Geneva today is simply stunning. The “framework agreement for elimination of Syrian chemical weapons” reached by Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov delivers, in writing at least, just about everything President Barack Obama demanded when he threatened to attack the Assad regime earlier this month.

  3. September 14, 2013 at 7:16 pm

    “Holding the door open for you VC ….. ” is what I wrote when I found a “Leave Comment” and decided to be the gentleman I wasn’t yesterday :D :D

    That said, enough time has elapsed that I won’t be first, but I do want to be close to the top in congratulating you, zizii on a very fine analytical accounting of several aspects we’ve been watching unfold.

    Oh, and regarding that fool Ezra Klein RT Irwin’s claptrap …

    #TrustBarack

  4. September 14, 2013 at 7:16 pm

    ZiZi, parlaying off the top of your wonderful thread……. you should get a kick out this.

  5. 38 hopefruit2
    September 14, 2013 at 7:21 pm

    This is a fantastic piece, zizi, and one for the archives….thank you so much. So many gems in there…but I had to spotlight this one:

    // What I believe Pres Obama has handed over to Putin is a grenade with pin pulled. PBO can be that righteously RUTHLESS. His political adversaries often realize that fact after it’s too late. …” //

    ^^^^^^^^^^
    THIS!!!

    • September 14, 2013 at 7:24 pm

      My most-loved line too Hopefruit, “righteously RUTHLESS” is toooooo perfect.

    • 40 Layla
      September 14, 2013 at 7:27 pm

      righteously RUTHLESS!!! Yes indeed! One just as to observe PBO’s face and every now and then you can just see that in his eyes!!!

    • September 14, 2013 at 7:27 pm

      Spot on, HF2.

      Our President has such such expressive, warm eyes.

      But when he’s ruthless, you can see the unwavering determination, as exhibited in the second “Please proceed, Governor” debate.

      No question that he would not back down, regardless of what R-money had to say.

    • September 14, 2013 at 7:39 pm

      Oh dear, maybe that was me just projecting onto PBO what I have done in the past to my own kids when they were teenagers preening like they were peacocks and macho he-man, then trying to one-up me. I just let them fall flat on their faces. NO mercy

      But PBO has done that too many times to count, which is why I don’t understand pundits who don’t recognize what he’s doing.

      but yeah as LL said it’s a function of ODS..Funny thing is PBO uses people’s underestimation of him to stellar use. :D

    • 45 globalcitizenlinda
      September 14, 2013 at 7:47 pm

      a few days ago, I expressed here the same sentiment in my tweet (expect not so elegantly Zizi)

      I pointed out the fact that the political landscape is full of people who have made their “political demise” by under-estimating PBO & yet many more keep lining up to get some handed to them – (mainly because they believe the media garbage

      • September 14, 2013 at 8:09 pm

        But the headbanging thing is this outcome of adversaries falling flat on their faces EVERY SINGLE time, yet the MSM and emoleft NEVER learn. What did Einstein say the definition of insanity was?

  6. September 14, 2013 at 7:23 pm

    From yesterday, before today’s joint US-Russia announcement. Thought it was appropriate for this thread.

  7. 49 Ladyhawke
    September 14, 2013 at 7:27 pm

    JAY CARNEY: RUSSIA HAS PUT ITS PRESTIGE AND CREDIBILITY ON THE LINE IN BACKING SYRIA CW PROPOSAL

    Press Briefing by Press Secretary Jay Carney, 9/12/2013

    ——————————————————————————

    Q Thanks, Jay. I wanted to ask you about two issues, one on Syria and the other one on the budget. On Syria, I wonder what the President’s reaction was to President Putin’s op-ed piece in The New York Times today. The Speaker called it insulting. I wonder what the President thought of it.

    MR. CARNEY: Well, let me say this. Both in his op-ed and in the statements and actions that we’ve seen from President Putin and his foreign minister, it is clear that President Putin has invested his credibility in transferring Assad’s chemical weapons to international control and ultimately destroying them. This is significant. Russia is Assad’s patron and protector, and the world will note whether Russia can follow through on the commitments that it’s made.

    As for the editorial, we’re not surprised by President Putin’s words. But the fact is that Russia offers a stark contrast that demonstrates why America is exceptional. Unlike Russia, the United States stands up for democratic values and human rights in our own country and around the world. And we believe that our global security is advanced when children cannot be gassed to death by a dictator.

    It is also worth noting that Russia is isolated and alone in blaming the opposition for the chemical weapons attack on August 21st. There is no credible reporting — and we have seen no credible reporting — that the opposition has used chemical weapons in Syria. And we have been joined by now 34 countries in declaring that the Assad regime is responsible for the use of chemical weapons on that night. Even Iran, which is fighting on Assad’s behalf in Syria, has publicly blamed the Assad regime for the August 21 attack.

    In addition to the intelligence pertaining to the regime’s preparations for the attack and our post-attack observations, it is common sense that the opposition does not have the capabilities to have carried out such a large-scale coordinated rocket and artillery attack from a regime-held neighborhood, targeting opposition neighborhoods.

    And I think it’s worth also pointing out that there’s a great irony in the placement of an op-ed like this because it reflects the truly exceptional tradition in this country of freedom of expression, and that is not a tradition shared in Russia, by Russia. And it is fact freedom of expression has been on the decrease over the past dozen or so years in Russia.

    Having said that, the point I made at the top is the most important point. Russia, as we saw just now in Geneva, has put its prestige and credibility on the line in backing this proposal to have Syria, the Assad regime, give up the chemical weapons that until two days ago it claimed it did not have, turn them over to international supervision with the purpose of eventually destroying them. And we are going to work with the Russians to see if this diplomatic avenue to resolving this problem can bear fruit. And that is absolutely worthwhile and the right thing to do.

    —————————————————-

    http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2013/09/12/press-briefing-press-secretary-jay-carney-9122013

  8. 53 jacquelineoboomer
    September 14, 2013 at 7:30 pm

    There I was sittin’ all pretty like, typing away at the end of the last thread for several minutes, eatin’ crackers like I owned the world.

  9. September 14, 2013 at 7:31 pm

    But, if Putin really thought that US internal politics is what’s determining President Obama’s calculations (especially when it was PBO himself who knowing the depth of rancid politics still invited congressional input), then he is the BIGGEST FOOL on the planet. Pres Obama does not do appendage-waving. I suggest Putin and US teatards and the emoprogs who’ve slobbered over him all watch any Roadrunner/Wile-E-Coyote skit.

    **************************

    Boom!!!!!!!!!

  10. September 14, 2013 at 7:35 pm
    • September 14, 2013 at 7:45 pm

      I cannot stand Ezra.

      Smug, insufferable and full of himself and his wife.

      It just occurred to me that maybe the reason for MSM crickets is because it’s Yom Kippur?

      My childhood hero, Sandy Koufax, never pitched on Yom Kippur, even when the Dodgers were in the World Series.

      Let’s see how much walk back happens on Monday by these cry-babies.

      • September 14, 2013 at 7:50 pm

        “It just occurred to me that maybe the reason for MSM crickets is because it’s Yom Kippur?”

        Someone mentioned that earlier, Arapaho415, but I find it hard to believe some of these MSM people wouldn’t have been leaping in to action to condemn PBO if talks on a deal broke down today, Yom Kippur or not.

        • September 14, 2013 at 7:55 pm

          Yeah, you’re probably right. Ezra apparently broke his contemplative fast to continue the “Obama is lucky” narrative today.

          Derbingle had the stomach to actually click on the link and said the article was written by someone else. But I’m such Ezra was quite gleeful when he sent out his tweet.

        • 62 hopefruit2
          September 14, 2013 at 7:55 pm

          I agree Chips. seriously doubt that Yom Kippur is the reason. Not all of these people are Jewish or observe Jewish Holidays and even then, most of them ignore such holidays when it comes to bashing PBO.

      • 63 anniebella
        September 14, 2013 at 8:03 pm

        I can’t stand Ezra Klein either.

    • September 14, 2013 at 8:03 pm

      Ooooooooooooooooooo weeeeeeeeee…..,,,Msss chips…telling it like it is

    • 65 nathkatun7
      September 14, 2013 at 11:41 pm

      Chips you’ve really been on fire! Absolutely brilliant tweet! The new meme by the media and the emoprog is all about President Obama being lucky. By invoking luck they then can comfortably proceed to challenge his intellect and his governing skills.

  11. September 14, 2013 at 7:36 pm

    Where oh, where, is Indie Liberal, John Kerry’s staunchest TOD supporter over the last few months? S/he must be on cloud 9 right about now.

    Things are looking less bleak for Syria (please let the killing stop), Iran is indicating they may be willing to talk to the US (we’ll know more after Rouhani’s UN speech, I guess) and someone here predicted that Israel will have agreed to a two-state solution before President Obama leaves office.

    All-around brilliance by this administration. No wonder GOP is in civil war, Kerry is succeeding on the foreign front.

    Only the MSM and Prof Left emoprogs seem to have not gotten the message. Their implosion and infighting (hopefully) will be a joy to behold.

  12. 75 Ladyhawke
    September 14, 2013 at 7:37 pm

    WHAT THE CYNICS FAIL TO UNDERSTAND IS THAT THE GROUND HAS SHIFTED BENEATH THEM…..

    President Barack Obama’s Inaugural Address – January 20, 2009

    —————————————

    Now, there are some who question the scale of our ambitions, who suggest that our system cannot tolerate too many big plans. Their memories are short, for they have forgotten what this country has already done, what free men and women can achieve when imagination is joined to common purpose, and necessity to courage. What the cynics fail to understand is that the ground has shifted beneath them, that the stale political arguments that have consumed us for so long no longer apply.

    The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works — whether it helps families find jobs at a decent wage, care they can afford, a retirement that is dignified. Where the answer is yes, we intend to move forward. Where the answer is no, programs will end. And those of us who manage the public’s dollars will be held to account, to spend wisely, reform bad habits, and do our business in the light of day, because only then can we restore the vital trust between a people and their government.

    ————————————————————

    http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/inaugural-address

    • September 14, 2013 at 7:42 pm

      Yep that line has been my signature line on my Dkos ID since Jan 20, 2009. So profound and elegant a statement

    • 77 nathkatun7
      September 15, 2013 at 12:28 am

      Thanks Ladyhawke for posting this. It is such a reminder of how President Obama conceptualizes the role of an efficient government and the importance of young people pursuing big dreams. Of all the votes I’ve cast in my life for many politicians, including presidents, I am most proud of the two votes I cast for President Obama in 2008 and 2012. Based on my personal experience, President Obmama is the best President in my adult life. And, based on my little knowledge of U.S. history, President Obama is without one of the best Presidents. I base my assessment of him on many factors, including following major ones:

      1. He saved the country from total economic collapse
      2. He helped enact one the most comprehensive health care program that will benefit almost all Americans.
      3. He actively participated in advancing the rights of a minority by engineering the repeal of DADT and refusing to support and enforce DOMA.
      4. He ended the war in Iraq by removing all combat forces from that country
      5. He led Congress to enact reforms aimed at curbing Wall Street Excesses and created an agency that looks out for the interest of consumers.
      6. He has vigorously pursued terrorists intent on inflicting harm on the U.S. and in particular the Al Qaida organization.
      7. He has restored international respect for the United Sates.

      There are hundreds of other achievements by President Obama that need to be prominently mentioned, I just focused on a handful of them simply to debunk the cynics, both on the left and the right, who repeatedly say that President Obama has accomplished nothing in 41/2 years.

  13. September 14, 2013 at 7:45 pm

    Glad you picked the pic with Vlad’s flat head. Never seen the back of the head that flat.

  14. 88 Vicki
    September 14, 2013 at 7:45 pm

    Zizi A super informative piece. I want to add one thing. The port of Tartus is Russia’s only naval installation in the Mediterranean. A good reason for Russia to want a stable Syria, don’t you think?
    Also the pipeline part of the picture is very critical. Since most of our citizens and politicians have shown little or no interest or understanding of pipeline politics this is never covered by the MSM.
    Same thing happened with Iraq conflict. Propaganda and ignorance. Back then I’d joke that I doubted Senators could pass a 4th grade geography test. Now I’ve come to understand that geography and history are being phased out of the curriculum right along with science.

    • September 14, 2013 at 7:50 pm

      I’m a big believer in geographic determinism, but our MSM seem to willfully ignore *countries* possibly motivations, but don’t hesitate to bash our President and his Administration for their “motives” (as if the MSM had a clue).

    • September 14, 2013 at 8:02 pm

      Absolutely spot on. I was referring to the port at Tarsus when I said Russia’s interests were tied to Assad, but didn’t mention it explicitly/

      Also something to think about. PBO knows that US beat Russia recently in oil production and on track to up our natural gas output standing (yes fracking is controversial, but i’m talking about aggregate output for geopolitical powerplays), so really we did not have a dog in the Syrian hunt to the extent that Russia did.

      All we need to do is perform security patrol work to protect our allies. That’s all. And PBO just won us perch outside the civil war cauldron

  15. 91 globalcitizenlinda
    September 14, 2013 at 7:51 pm

    great work Zizi! thanks for the thoughts you expressed so concisely

  16. 93 globalcitizenlinda
    September 14, 2013 at 7:52 pm
  17. 94 dotster3
    September 14, 2013 at 7:58 pm

    Watching disappointing college football game, our Fighting Illini are struggling against 13th ranked Washington. It’s being played in Da Bears Soldier Field in Chgo and it looks like all of Chicago are Illinois grads–the place is packed. My Illinois grad daughter is there—with spouse and a huge group of college friends. They’ve been posting hilarious photos on facebook of their fun packed tailgating party—-on a perfect weather night. I think they’ve been there since 1 or 2—–game started at 5. We’re invited over for din tomorrow night. Wonder if that’s still on. :)

  18. 98 Anjo
    September 14, 2013 at 7:59 pm

    Was the military strike on Syria made on the MSM why they are so quiet about the Syria agreement, are the few who have responded the wounded, is the twitter silence part of the collateral damage, its very puzzling after the war drums the last few weeks the MSM are rather quiet, methinks they are bombed over the Obama brilliance and are awaiting rescue from their self inflicted ignorance…Please Proceed indeed

    • 99 Layla
      September 14, 2013 at 8:04 pm

      Well their gant charts were showing just how they could make tons of $ with a shiny new war!!!

    • September 14, 2013 at 8:05 pm

      :lol: :lol: :lol: Chips generously suggested that the MSM is observing Yom Kippur, wo they are quiet. Dontcha know it.

      Meanwhile that insipid Ezra Klein is posting the conventional Wisdom that PBO blundered his way into luck. Sigh

  19. 101 anniebella
    September 14, 2013 at 8:06 pm

    Don’t forget POTUS will be on This Week tomorrow morning.

  20. 102 taiping1
    September 14, 2013 at 8:08 pm

    Amazing, insightful piece.Also your link to Stuart’s piece on integral leaders. It’s too bad people on the Left and Right are so blinded by racism and ideology that they are clueless about what is really happening. I look forward to progress on two state solution and Iran. Perhaps a sideline meeting with Rouhani at UN?

  21. 104 africa
    September 14, 2013 at 8:08 pm

    Out of the park!!

    Wow, Zizi!!

  22. 106 africa
    September 14, 2013 at 8:10 pm
  23. September 14, 2013 at 8:13 pm

    http://www.politicususa.com/2013/09/14/u-n-chief-very-troubled-failure-security-council-syria.html

    President Obama Got the World to Pay Attention as the U.N. Was Failing Syria

    Turning our backs on crimes against humanity isn’t the same thing as turning our backs on a civil war. Crimes against humanity are a crime against our humanity. We are defined by what we tolerate and what we ignore.

  24. 110 africa
    September 14, 2013 at 8:14 pm
  25. September 14, 2013 at 8:15 pm

    I want to thank you zizi for all the explanations, but I want to repeat this:

    If you read between the lines in Krauthammer’s recent spittle laced rant against Pres Obama on his Syria decision, you’ll realize just how earth-shatteringly PBO has upended Cold War residual thinking about the Middle East and power alignments. Of course Krauthammer is so blinded by bloodlust to obliterate Iran on behalf of Israel that he fails to see the tectonic shift at hand. Other teatards are so insecure that every Obama move is filtered through their castration anxieties. To them every US action must be a dick-waving exercise, even if such action results in us literally losing our limbs & heads. To them the Amurkin phallus MUST reign supreme even if it is just a severed appendage sputtering on a deserted battlefield.

    In the midst of their Obama Derangement Syndrome, POTUS has flipped the script on them, and it will not be easily flipped back if there is a Republican President. I love that the President set it all in motion when he said, ‘ Yes, let’s have Congress VOTE on Syria.’

    The President brought back Congress into the equation, and the GOP, in their Obama hatred, were like, YES, let’s spit in Obama’s eye, not realizing that if there is another Republican President, they just won’t be able to ignore Congress and their FOREIGN POLICY RESPONSIBILITY.

    he has totally flipped the script, and when they wake up…….it’ll be past time for them to try and do anything about it.

  26. 114 Ladyhawke
    September 14, 2013 at 8:17 pm

    SYRIA NOW BECOMES A TEST OF RUSSIAN CREDIBILITY.

    Obama’s Thoughtful Diplomatic Triumph on Syria Leaves His Critics Speechless

    By: Jason Easley

    —————————————————————

    This is not the sort of agreement that comes together quickly. It is a complicated and detailed agreement that looks to have been in the works for a while. The structure of this agreement verifies the Obama’s administration’s claim that they have been working on this with the Russians for months, and it was first mentioned a year ago.
    .
    .
    The idea that has been pushed by the Obama critics on the left that Putin rescued Obama on Syria is even more absurd and ridiculous when the details of this agreement are examined. The pressure is now on Russia to deliver Syria’s compliance. If this agreement falls through, it will be on the Russians. President Obama will get credit for the agreement and for not using the military to act unilaterally no matter what.

    Syria now becomes a test of Russian credibility. Russia’s reputation is on the line. If they fail to deliver Syrian compliance, their image as a global force will take a huge hit. If Putin was really the hero, he would have been able to negotiate from a position of strength and not take such a giant risk.

    ————————————————-

    http://www.politicususa.com/2013/09/14/obamas-thoughtful-diplomatic-truimph-syria-leaves-critics-speechless.html

  27. 115 africa
    September 14, 2013 at 8:20 pm

    Major derp.

  28. 116 dotster3
    September 14, 2013 at 8:21 pm

    I didn’t watch this, but this tweet is pitiful. She can take her “both sides” and ………..

    • 117 Layla
      September 14, 2013 at 8:23 pm

      Let’s see….fuck you MHP and your show!!!! Sorry about the language!

      • 118 Layla
        September 14, 2013 at 8:25 pm

        I am usually a quiet and reserved French girl but these people have made a truckdriver out of me..no offense to truckdrivers of course!

          • 120 vcprezofan2
            September 14, 2013 at 9:06 pm

            Zizi, thanks! I’m holding my poor head together from all the meaningful ideas and thoughts threatening to fill my mind. ;) ;)

            Special thanks too for the link to the ‘integral leader’ explanation and to a new thoughtful blog writer. I’ve noted Jim Stuart’s ‘address’ and intend to visit again to see if he continues to be so ‘right-on’.

            We really do have all the media AND media researchers we need to understand the intricacies of the O-Admin right here in the village! :grin: Thank you, again.

        • September 14, 2013 at 8:47 pm

          You’re a hoot!!!!! :D :D :D :D

        • 122 hopefruit2
          September 14, 2013 at 8:51 pm

          I’m with you Layla…this is a ridiculous tweet and deserves a cussing!!

          • 123 HZ
            September 14, 2013 at 9:41 pm

            A double “cussing!!!!,” hopefruit2. Layla, my dear angel, you are fine. We are alive and human. At least we give up our ‘human words of knock the crap off, MHP and all the rest of the chatter-heads. These people have no knowledge AT All of what POB and VPBiden have knowledge of every morning at their briefing and even before a briefer comes into POB’s presence. They are no match, I said, No Match for this president., at all. I will leave my ‘human alive word’ out because I just asked for forgiveness from for my inner space after speaking with my best best friend(we both are very strong, but do not cross us on certain things) then the ‘alive human words come floating out.

            I am drinking a little tea and eating a lovely delicious homemade biscuit from my dear mother’s recipe. Just felt her beautiful spirit in my space early this morning. I am about to approach the anniversary of her departure of her homegoing to another space from her loving family. Lord, I miss her so much. But the biscuits are very good, if I can say that. I had not made them for fifteen years. I do not eat white flour because of my tummy problems. And besides, her biscuits were always made from self rising white flour and Crisco with very cold ice water. In honor or the most wonderful and special lady in my life, my precious mother. So I will be quiet and nice now.

            (((((((((((((( I still and always will love you my Layla)))))))))))))) HZ

        • September 14, 2013 at 9:19 pm

          I can understand your frustration Layla. I don’t understand what her game is ether. It’s like she is trying her best to be a reasonable voice but to be honest she is just not able to pull it off. I remember when she used to be a guest on maddow’s show. Not sure if she has changed much but for some reason she did not get on my nerves as much as she does now.

          Now one of my fave’s is Ms. Joy Reid. I love it whenever she is on any show.

    • 126 vcprezofan2
      September 14, 2013 at 8:54 pm
    • September 14, 2013 at 9:03 pm
    • 131 nathkatun7
      September 15, 2013 at 12:49 am

      The question is: Should MHP “be praised or derided” for talking from both sides of her mouth? I loved my grandmother because she was always ready to dispense her wisdom, forged through many years of experience and her keen ability to observe and listen to people carefully. The people he particularly found so revolting were those she routinely called “two-faced” people. That is people who talked from both sides of their mouth.

  29. 132 dotster3
    September 14, 2013 at 8:24 pm

    Really bad news on Illinois game—–I don’t even want to talk about it. (the update I promised—-there will be no further updates, unless…….miracle)

  30. 134 carolyn
    September 14, 2013 at 8:28 pm

    LL and Zizi, two superb pieces. I don’t know how to do it, but I think both of these need to be sent en toto to ALL the network anchors, plus the reporters who constantly are putting themselves in President Obama’s face: Chuck Todd, Jake Tapper, John King, Wolf Blitzer…..you know which ones. I believe this can have some positive effect on some of these.

    • 135 HZ
      September 14, 2013 at 9:49 pm

      Carolyn, so true. I just cry as I read such beautiful and brilliant thinkers as those we have here. We are so blessed and so sweetly blessed to be in the presence of our Chips’s sanctuary and all of the other brilliant thinkers and writer. I wish that I could write like Zizi, LL, Tally, LP, UT, Donna, Lisa on the entire crew. You all are the very Best. You bless so many of us day in and day out. And most of all you give joy and a complete appreciation from our prize and joy, President Barack H. Obama. Believe me.HZ

  31. 136 lisalovesobama
    September 14, 2013 at 8:31 pm

    Ah, Ezra Klein….. Smug little pencil prick. :roll: you ever seen two kids on the play ground, one’s younger than the other, or one’s a boy and the other’s a girl? And the one that thinks he’s superior challenges the other one to some game, thinking that he’s better than the other, and then the girl or the younger kid beats the other kid’s ass and the ‘superior’ one says: ‘oh, it’s just beginner’s luck!” That’s what that two-bit runt reminds me of. Ass.

      • 138 HZ
        September 14, 2013 at 10:10 pm

        Hi Africa. May I use your sweet emotional faces(I do not know how to find them)

        Lisa, I miss you so much. I know that you are very busy, but oh, know that this little senior loves you so much, and I am so elated when you have the time to stop in. (((( Love you so much, another one of my angels)))))HZ

    • September 14, 2013 at 10:49 pm

      MERCYYYYYYYYYYY…LISA….telling like it is

    • 140 nathkatun7
      September 15, 2013 at 1:02 am

      Totally love your expression: “Smug little pencil prick.” Your comment about Ezra Klein is absolutely spot-on! Every achievement of President Obama is attributed, by “smug little pencil pricks,” like Ezra Klein, to good luck. But every perceived failure by the President is never, and I mean never, attributed to bad luck. What really infuriates me is that these idiots are paid six-seven figures incomes to write such nonsense.

  32. September 14, 2013 at 8:32 pm

    Brava, zizi, brava.

    Just got back from linner—Stewie behaved impeccably—and couldn’t wait to read this.

    The US doesn’t have to “arm” the Syrian rebles; it can train the moderates to be more effective than the jihadists. France and the UK will arm them. And it can put pressure on the Saudis to funnel weapons to the moderates, not the AQ elements. Assad knows this; he has no options; soon he’ll either have to beg for negotiations, go into exile, or die. Those are his options.

    • September 14, 2013 at 8:37 pm

      Glad all went well at the restaurant, LL!!

      Fact is, the US has been training moderates (in Jordan primarily) and they are now returning to Syria exceptionally better armed (Saudis, French, etc., supplying armaments), organized and effective. And, they have infiltrated much of Damascus and Assad knows it. Tick Tock …

    • 145 Layla
      September 14, 2013 at 8:38 pm

      The results of good parenting LL! Interesting segment!

    • September 14, 2013 at 8:41 pm

      Yep, that’s exactly what’s facing Assad & his puppeteer Putin. They know they are screwed but they are putting a brave face on it cashing in their new found celebrity status in the West. But if there is anything they need to know about viral fame, it fizzes out faster than a punctured Sprite can.

      Meanwhile there’s the daggers of Qatari financed fighters, Saudi fighters, Iranian backed fighters along with the Syrian opposition all waiting for them back home.

      PBO’s off to Indonesia to do biz and light some fire under China’s ill-advised territorial waters moves

      • September 14, 2013 at 8:45 pm

        The ME will be solved, because the people of the ME, both Jewish and Arab, demand that it be solved. They don’t want to be mired in poverty and backwardness. They want what East Asia and India—and hell, even Africa—have, which is stupendous rates of growth and more or less stable societies. Obama realizes this, and applies just the lightest of touches to make sure the momentum continues in that direction.

      • 148 hopefruit2
        September 14, 2013 at 8:48 pm

        zizi you have a way with words…I’m going to steal that one..”viral fame, it fizzes out faster than a punctured Sprite can.” :) :)

  33. 151 Jovie
    September 14, 2013 at 8:37 pm
  34. September 14, 2013 at 8:37 pm

    Simply ….

    • 153 Layla
      September 14, 2013 at 8:42 pm

      I know Bob!!! PBO is brilliant!!!!!

      • 154 HZ
        September 14, 2013 at 10:15 pm

        Layla, it is so very, very nice to see his mind work going up against the fools. Just brilliant all over the place. Love him. Thanks again, Mr. President for showing your fine mind again. We love you and respect you for using it brilliantly as well. HZ

  35. September 14, 2013 at 8:43 pm

    So, more gushing about our dog. He was a perfect little boy. Didn’t growl, didn’t bark, eventually calmed down and just sat at our feet as we ate.

  36. 157 HZ
    September 14, 2013 at 8:44 pm

    I want to thank Chips for this most brilliant place of beauty. The Best!!!!!

    Second, I want to thank Chips for having some of the brightest and most brilliant minds who contribute to this site with such class, intellect, and respect in their writing. ZiZi. you did a brilliant piece. Thank you, Thank you.

    Third: I want to thank each of our TOD family who sacrificed time, raised funds, walked the streets and knocked on doors, did phone banks, placed signs in yards, on their cars, talked to friends and family members about our candidate, then Senator Barack Obama. And then all of you went on to the polls and made this brilliant man our 44th President of the United State.,

    Then again you all went back to the drawing board and re-tuned your instruments and wrote the most brilliant composition ever that was so worthy of re-electing President Barack Obama so the nation and the world could see that we indeed have a brilliant mind, compassionate heart, and true to his core being, a fantastic President of the United States, President Barack H. Obama.

    Now let the choir sing: Amen, Amen, Amen, Amen, Amen.

    Have a wonderful evening, my Chips and TOD family. HZ

    • 158 Layla
      September 14, 2013 at 8:47 pm

      Amen by angel!!!! Pls ignore the foul language in my above post!

    • September 14, 2013 at 8:48 pm

      Ooh me blushie blushie. Thanks

    • September 14, 2013 at 9:10 pm

      x1,000,000,000. Amen, amen, amen.

      TODer BTs are brilliant and I’m grateful for all of these illuminating posts in the midst of confusion and wholesale insanity. BRAVO.

      And HZ. You are such a breath of fresh air, a calm in the storm, a burst of compassion, a spiritual leader and a whole lot of earthly loveliness. THANK YOU.

      • 163 HZ
        September 14, 2013 at 10:43 pm

        (((((((((((((( Love you my dear meta.))))))))))))))) I will control my hissy fits when these fools get on my nerve. My words do not fit into my precious space. That is what I mean when I say,” be gentle in your space and be kind to your space.” Because these fools and this time that we are now living in will tear the living hell out of our space and emotional levers of sanity. TY, my meta.HZ

  37. 164 japa21
    September 14, 2013 at 8:53 pm

    zizi, excellent piece, as was LL’s earlier.

    In 2008, Obama talked about wanting to be a transformational figure, as Reagan was. During his first 4 years in office, people would actually laugh at that thought and say nothing has changed. But during those first 4 years, things were changing. He immediately changed the GOP into a totally loony party which is now going through some major twistings and turnings to avoid totally collapsing.

    But more importantly he was already, at that time, transforming our foreign policy, beginning with the Cairo speech. And it wasn’t only in the ME that these changes were taking place.

    Earlier this year, he gave a major foreign policy speech and shortly afterwards I wrote a post on how he was becoming a transformational President. Zizi, you have hit on another factor in how he has become transformational. Most Presidents have always pursued a policy of the US having to be in the forefront when it comes to actions outside our borders. This goes back to Wilson in WWI. By the time he got Congress to approve our entering, the war was, for all intents and purposes, decided. In fact, much of the English and French military leaders didn’t want us, fearing that the US would take credit for the ultimate victory over Germany, which proved to be prescient.

    What PBO has done is introduce the concept that we lead, or we can be in the rear (Libya), or we can force the hands of other countries, as he has done here.

    Those who say that Putin has scored a victory here are, n and simple, idiots, but because of that, they won’t change. Those that think this stopped PBO from starting a war he wanted to start are also idiots (and frequently the same people). They are the left’s victim of ODS that LL was referring to earlier.

    But guess what? The people that count, the leaders of other countries, including Russia and Syria and specially Iran, know what the real story here is. There is a reason why Iran elected a more moderate President and why the Ayatollah even allowed a moderate to run. They know this President of ours and actually respect him. And this Syria situation has shown that, unlike his predecessor, he is willing to work with other countries and not stab them in the back or go back on his word. But he is not going to play games either.

    So let the Moons moan and the Fords flail and the Krauthammers hammer kraut, the people who actually count in this world know what happened and the amount of respect PBO has earned over this is incalculable.

    • September 14, 2013 at 9:00 pm

      Critical insight, japa:

      “There is a reason why Iran elected a more moderate President and why the Ayatollah even allowed a moderate to run. They know this President of ours and actually respect him. And this Syria situation has shown that, unlike his predecessor, he is willing to work with other countries and not stab them in the back or go back on his word. But he is not going to play games either.”

      YOU BETCHA

    • September 14, 2013 at 9:05 pm

      LL is also a brilliant writer and deep thinker. Chips has chosen well. She knows how to pick them. Danny will probably be the smartest black lab in the world. Housebroken in a day!

    • September 14, 2013 at 9:16 pm

      PBO has advanced American civilization and the social fabric by leaps and bounds. That’s why he has such exaggerated oppositional resistance. Old timers who are used to enjoying great privilege are freaked out beyond recognition. They have lost their power. We are moving FORWARD whether they’re in or not. We will not be stopped.

  38. September 14, 2013 at 8:56 pm

    This post is clipping along like usual. A little geography quiz. Where in the world do melons and acorn squash ripen at the same time?
    A: In a garden on the planes of Wyoming.
    Bet Lizzie doesn’t know that! ;)

  39. 173 AJ
    September 14, 2013 at 9:00 pm

    Guys, please, a favor:

    Can we stop with the “MSM is quiet because of Yom Kippur” talk? I know no one here means anything by it, but it unfortunately does play into the old trope that “Jews control the media.”

    Like I said, I know no one here meant anything negative by this observation, but I think we can give it a rest now. At any rate, Yom Kippur is over now on the east coast.

    L’shana tova. Peace, out.

    • September 14, 2013 at 9:14 pm

      I checked on the timelines of the “journalists” I used to follow on Twitter, and almost all of them are Jewish.

      It’s just my former following list, and it didn’t occur to me until late afternoon West Coast time.

      This doesn’t let Hayes off the hook though.

      I’m pretty sure that we didn’t mean anything one way or another by mentioning that today is Yom Kippur.

      One thing to keep in mind. Jewish people account for less than 10% of the US population (I think that’s right, but please correct me if I’m wrong). It’s true that more than 10% of the media is Jewish, so mentioning Yom Kippur is a consideration on our part, not a stereotype.

      Just speaking for myself, of course.

    • September 14, 2013 at 9:18 pm

      Fair point AJ, I honestly didn’t think of it that way, but I see what you mean. I hate the ‘Jews run the media’ thing, with a passion, but was simply aware that two of PBO’s main MSM detractors, Jake Tapper and Chuck Todd, are Jewish, so wondered like others if that was why they weren’t around today.

  40. September 14, 2013 at 9:20 pm

    Watching the first Star Trek movie from 2009 with my sister and she actually asked me “so what is Star Trek about”… SMDH…the youth today.

  41. 181 globalcitizenlinda
    September 14, 2013 at 9:24 pm

    I have had it with the whining left!

    They perpetual whiners need to understand that “keyboard activism” is great needs to expand; but it is not the end of it all.

    If we believe in progress we also need support PBO’s agenda by hitting the street as well in order to amplify our voices.

    have had a number of thoughts put out there for some to ponder (below).

    hope they can take them to heart & stop regarding the PBO as the enemy – he is the head of the Team, damn it.

    • 182 hopefruit2
      September 14, 2013 at 9:49 pm

      Excellent push-back Linda. Don’t let them get away with spinning lies and distortions about what really went on and who is to be blamed. Thank you!! Off to retweet. :)

  42. 183 nathkatun7
    September 14, 2013 at 11:25 pm

    Thank you so much, Zizi, for another of your excellent posts. It’s so rewarding to come to this blog and read brilliant essays, deeply grounded in logic and historical knowledge, and filled with great insights. I am sharing your post, as well as the post by Liberal Librarian, to all the people I know and respect.

  43. 185 amk for obama
    September 14, 2013 at 11:36 pm

    Very good analysis of Syrian clusterfuck, zizi. Obama called putin’s fifth columnist bluff in ME and really showed the world how short is that lil napoleon’s FP vision is. And the loony left rooti’ for putin is sicker than the ew fucksticks sticking up for him.

    • September 15, 2013 at 12:43 am

      Hey Amk,
      Habari za siku nyingi? Are you still in SA, gone to Kenya, or back home? Hope all’s well with you my brother.

      Thanks a bunch for your compliments. Yes the reality of Russian forked tongue speak will become apparent very soon. Now they have to deliver on all the bluster Putin’s put up. Sadly many more ordinary Syrians are gonna die before the hubris of Assad and Putin’s gonna become glaring to the whole world.

  44. September 15, 2013 at 1:39 am

    Such a great, insightful article, Zizi. Well done. You show a masterful understanding of the complexities at play. Have read this through once already and have it bookmarked for more leisured reading :) This paragraph struck me because it’s what has been bother me the most:

    “If anything’s been most consistent in President Obama’s foreign policy positions, it is his conviction that all nations MUST bear their responsibilities; that the US has been vilified enough by nations who hide behind platitudes yet foist off tangible action onto the US. Time to put up or shut up.”

    It’s a damned if we do, damned if we don’t attitude of the rest of the world that really upsets me sometimes. Thanks for pointing that out.

    Great read.

  45. 190 Bill R.
    September 15, 2013 at 2:22 am
  46. 191 arkluvspbo
    September 15, 2013 at 8:45 am

    Thought bubble: “oh shit, now what do I do”
    Excellent essay, Zizi!


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