Well, this is odd. The heck with an exit strategy. We can’t even work out an admittance maneuver. The automatic door-opener that proved so reliable for presidents past has short-circuited and keeps slamming shut whenever Barack Obama tries to enter the war store with his empty shopping cart.
Or maybe he’s angling to be known as the architect of the modern war. A new kind with intermissions. So he augmented the fast lane with a flashing red. We got ourselves a chief executive more comfortable hitting the pause button than fast-forward. The world’s policeman stopped for a donut. And he might just linger at the counter to flirt with the waitress.
Intent on bringing experience as father of two young girls to the international stage, the president is punishing Syrian President Bashar al-Assad by giving him a time-out. Yeah, that’ll send a message. “Use chemical weapons on your own people and no more milk and cookies for you. And if I hear one more word about human shields, mister, you are grounded for eternity plus two weeks.”
To all the people accusing the president of sending mixed messages, so sorry for the rain delay in your regularly scheduled war. Hope the postponement of the cessation of human life hasn’t inconvenienced you. But you have a point. First he calls for targeted punitive strikes against the Assad government. Then, not so much. He zigs. He zags. Instead of shock and awe, we get talk and law. How dare Obama stop and think before he bombs? Clearly he’s conflicted by the concept of conflict.
Must be what all those liberals refer to as ... diplomacy. As alien as methane rain. Some sort of socialist stunt. Which we red blooded Americans find disconcerting. The Bushes were resolute. Once their minds were set, they stayed set. Like concrete. Even Clinton was rather lunkish. This guy, however, is limber and fluid. Much like a strawberry smoothie. Deliberation before liberation. Could set a troubling precedent.
Meanwhile, the public is confused. Exactly why are we sticking our noses up more Mideast skirts? Again. Don’t we already have enough going on over here? And there? Of course, you think we’re war-weary, you should talk to the Syrians. The rebels aren’t just fighting the government, they’re forced to fend off other rebels as well. 3-D civil war from both ends. Squared.
It doesn’t help that everything we know is wrong. Dennis Rodman is flourishing as a Goodwill Ambassador. And Vladimir Putin is now a Peace Advocate. What’s next: Kim Kardashian, the Molecular Chemistry Consultant? Mike Tyson — Poet Laureate? Tim Tebow — NFL Quarterback?
Putin offering to help is as suspicious as the wet spot on a veterinary couch. But at least we can trust Russia to tell the rest of the world whether Assad is lying about the strength and size of his chemical weapons cache. After all, they sold him the stuff.
Meanwhile, Congress slipped off the decision hook like a flippy floppy flounder. For one brief shining moment, they can stop worrying about being nailed down on “support a strike” or “not support a strike” and get back to the important business of this country ... voting to repeal Obamacare. Again.
Will Durst is a political comedian who has performed around the world. He is a familiar pundit on television and radio.