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Posted by on Sep 29, 2014 in Politics | 1 comment

“Obama is the rare politician who finds telling whoppers difficult…


“Obama is the rare politician who finds telling whoppers difficult…[icopyright one button toolbar]

“… and he couldn’t, or wouldn’t, hide some of his concerns about where this all is leading,” writes John Cassidy in a clear analysis of Obama/ISIS/60 Minutes.”

Probably Obama shouldn’t have blamed the intelligence agencies. Or rather, he was right to blame the intelligence agencies but should have kept himself in the mix. Still…

If Obama didn’t resolve the contradictions and ambiguities that bedevil the U.S. relationship with Syria, he can hardly be faulted. For now, at least, those contradictions can’t be resolved. In deciding to expand the U.S.-led assault on ISIS to targets inside Syria, the President is hitting and hoping. The hitting involves trying to destroy some of ISIS‘s command-and-control infrastructure, disrupting its lucrative oil business, and cutting its supply lines. The hope is that, eventually, these military attacks will destroy the group’s internal cohesion, and that, meanwhile, something will turn up to resolve the broader Syrian nightmare.

“What we also have to do is, we have to come up with political solutions in Iraq and Syria in particular, but in the Middle East generally, that arise in an accommodation between Sunni and Shia populations that right now are the biggest cause of conflict, not just in the Middle East, but in the world,” Obama told Kroft.

And no, just for the record, he didn’t say that would be easy, either. …Cassidy,NewYorker

What we need is a grown-up, serious intelligence capability — something we haven’t had for years and years. We’ve been coasting along on the sense that we’re so strong we can afford a few gaffes and mistakes and misinterpretations. And Iraqs and Afghanistans.

But we can’t. We’re being adolescents in a grown-up world. We won’t play unless we’re in charge. You may have noticed that we’ve long since lost the admiration of the rest of the world, settling for our allies’ weary tolerance and the rest of the world’s skepticism, making up for the deficit with an ever more shrill homegrown nationalism — adjusting our flag pins and repeating the notion that we’re the best country in the world.

Cross-posted from Prairie Weather