DC’s summer heat breeds foreign policy follies and one grand opportunity

The first hot and humid weeks of Washington’s summer have produced some predictable foreign policy absurdities, but also one great opportunity to protect U.S. interests.

Senator McCain in Syria

It is bad enough that Arizona’s shame went to Syria to be made a fool of by the Islamists, but the worse news is that he came back. The doddering old codger never saw an unnecessary war he did not want our military kids to fight and die in, and he probably does not even realize that the people the Syrian resistance presented to meet him were the same sort of atypical folks that our media mindlessly slobbered over in Libya and Egypt — neatly coiffed, English-speaking, secular professionals who do not know one end of a gun from the other and will become the dearly departed if al-Qaedaism triumphs in Syria. McCain’s gullibility may have slowed the war a bit, though, as it surely caused an enormous amount of hilarity-to-the-point-of-tears for Islamist fighters, perhaps making them unfit to fight for a few days while recovering from the belly aches induced by their reaction to the good Senator.

Anglo-American jack-assery

President Obama and his foreign-policy team have yet to figure out that a British soldier died in London from a terrorist attack. This is par for the course from an administration led by an American (?) who is a perfect example of America’s disastrous 1960’s generation; that is, a man who never worked a day in his life, taught the anti-work populace how get free stuff from working Americans, and believes an Ivy League education empowers him to define reality and shred the Constitution. But much worse, the usually level-headed British — in the persons of Foreign Secretary William Hague and London Mayor Boris Johnson — summoned the nerve to call the soldier’s killing an act of terrorism, but then slipped into Obama-Bush deceitfulness and claimed the attack had nothing to do with the UK’s interventionist policy in the Muslim world. Like Oz’s wizard, Hague and Johnson told the British electorate to ignore what the two men said about exacting revenge for Britain killing Muslims in Iraq as they carved up the young soldier. They — the highly educated Hague and Johnson — claimed that they knew better than the Islamist killers about what motivated the attack. So at least in the field of trans-Atlantic, national-security wrecking lies, there seems still to be a “special relationship.”

Damn it, Obama and CIA Director Brennan told you the war against the mujahideen is over!

Well, maybe, but we might first want to consider what U.S. and Western interventionism motivated the “defeated” Islamists to do in May 2013: Two successful Afghan insurgent attacks on the most protected district in Kabul; the dead British soldier; two nearly simultaneous al-Qaeda car bomb attacks in Niger in response to Western intervention in Mali and the establishment of a U.S. drone base in Niger; a fully reinvigorated and aggressive Sunni Islamist mujahideen force — which includes al-Qaeda — bombing and ambushing effectively and at will across Iraq; the FBI apparently executing a an associate of the marathon-bombing Tsarnaev brothers, perhaps to stop him from bettering the American public’s knowledge of the coming Islamist storm that will have to be fought here at home; a French soldier stabbed by an Islamist while on patrol in Paris; the successes of al-Qaeda ally Boko Haram in northern Nigeria necessitating the invasion of the country’s northern states by the Nigerian army; and, a suicide car bomb by North Caucasus’s mujahideen that killed eleven in Dagestan.

Back to Syria, Part 1 — Turn about is fair play

There is a delicious irony in Russia asserting, in essence, that “Syria has a right to exist” and then arming the Asaad regime so it has a military chance against aerial attacks by those Moscow terms “international hotheads” — meaning Israel, the United States, and those one-upon-a-time Great Powers, Britain and France. The Russians, of course, know that no nation has a “right to exist”; both as the USSR and earlier as the Czarist state, in fact, Moscow spent a good deal of time brutally demonstrating that no state has a right to exist unless it can defend itself. Still, the Russians seem to have a fine sense for absurdity, hypocrisy, and most of all timing, As Washington and its interventionist allies keep chirping the absolute nonsense that Israel has a “right to exist” — it will exist if it can defend itself and if it stops deliberately making lethal enemies — they and their UN lackey are lined up to make sure the Syrian state stops existing, thereby adding another scalp to those of Libya, Egypt, and Tunisia. It seems the “right to exist” is an attribute that belongs only to Israel.

Back to Syria, Part 2 — Why look a gift horse in the mouth?

Given the above noted batch of Sunni Islamist military actions around the world — and the West’s self-defeating refusal to see how its interventionism motivates them — could the Syrian war be a Godsend to the addled who inhabit the White House and the Congress? You bet. Look at what is developing on the ground in Syria: (a) Asaad’s forces are killing Sunni mujahideen — including at least one female mujahideen from Michigan — who would otherwise be targeting the West; (b) Lebanese Hizballah and Iran are bleeding lives and money to kill Sunni Islamists who otherwise would be targeting America or another Western target; (c) the Sunni mujahideen in Syria are killing Hizballah, Iranian, and Syrian fighters, all of whom Washington claims are threats to the United States, the West, and Israel; and (d) Shias and Sunnis are merrily murdering each other in Syria in a contest which — when added to the impetus from the steadily accelerating sectarian violence in Iraq — is increasing chances for a region wide and massively bloody Shia-Sunni war, which, as Usama bin Laden predicted and feared, would do more than anything else to neuter his anti-U.S. defensive jihad. If all in Washington who are tasked with national security would for once think in terms of “America First,” they would leave town for a very long and secluded summer vacation and for the next 90 days allow messages to accumulate unanswered from the UK, France, Israel, and any other regime that is demanding America fight in Syria. The status quo in Syria suits American interests perfectly, and if things improve there during the summer — that is, if the current combatants maintain or increase their ardor to bleed themselves white — so much the better for the United States. And that, at day’s end, is all that counts.

Author: Michael F. Scheuer

Michael F. Scheuer worked at the CIA as an intelligence officer for 22 years. He was the first chief of its Osama bin Laden unit, and helped create its rendition program, which he ran for 40 months. He is an American blogger, historian, foreign policy critic, and political analyst.