It looks like President Barack Obama is getting ready to retaliate against Syria for crossing his “red line” on the use of weapons of mass destruction – but a new Reuters poll shows that almost nobody wants the U.S. to get involved in yet another inscrutable war in the Middle East.
The poll surveyed Americans’ opinions on whether U.S. should intervene in the Syrian conflict – regardless of whether President Bashar al-Assad violated basic human rights by using chemical weapons against civilians. It found that 60 percent of Americans are opposed to any intervention in Syria, while only 9 percent believe the U.S. should get involved. Even when asked whether it could be proved that chemical weapons have been used against civilians in Syria, only 25 percent of those polled said the U.S. would be justified in intervening.
Many who offered comments along with their poll responses justified their opposition by saying the U.S. can’t effectively police the world and that it’s not a job that President Obama, like his Presidential forebears, should assume.
Ahead of any possible military action against Assad, Obama’s critics are sharpening their knives against the President’s possible capitulation to the same second-term modus operandi of predecessors, who mired the U.S. in Middle Eastern conflict on the pretense of righting moral atrocities.
“In many ways, President Barack Obama has rehabilitated the presidency of George W. Bush in ways which the conservative president’s supporters never could,” writes Mediaite’s Noah Rothman. “This is especially true in relation to the conduct of the global war on terror; an area of public policy in which Obama arguably had the broadest public mandate to govern in ways radically dissimilar to his predecessor.”
In other words, President Obama has come full circle from his promise of “change,” and will stand amongst the Bushes when history remembers his role in extending America’s enforcement ambitions in the Middle East at the run of the 21st Century.