A good rule of thumb to use when evaluating whether you are hearing the truth or a lie is to first stop and consider whether the story makes sense. If it doesn’t make sense, it’s probably not true.
President Barack Obama told Syrian President Bashar Assad just more than a year ago that using chemical weapons on his people would cross a “red line.” It was on Aug. 20, 2012 that Obama made an appearance before the White House press corps and said: “We have been very clear to the Assad regime — but also to the other players on the ground — that a red line for us is we start seeing a whole bunch of chemical weapons moving our or being utilized. That would change my calculus; that would change my equation. We have communicated in no uncertain terms with every player in the region that that’s a red line for us and that there would be enormous consequences if we start seeing movement on the chemical weapons front or the use of chemical weapons.”
On Monday, after reports and video surfaced that purported to show Syrians — including children — suffering the effects of and dying from chemical weapons attacks, the Obama Administration went all in accusing Assad of using chemical weapons on his people. The question we must ask, then, is: Does this make sense?
In Syria’s uncivil war, Assad’s forces were repulsing the al-Qaida rebel forces aligned against them. They had fought them to a standstill at least. This occurred despite the fact that the United States, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and others were supplying them with weapons and materiel. There are even reports that the CIA and non-government “contractors” were training and fighting with the “rebels.”
Assad, a medical school graduate who was training to be an ophthalmologist in London when he was called back to Syria by his father to take a position in government, is a smart man. He certainly understood what Obama meant in his “red line” speech. He understood the universal condemnation that would follow an attack; and he no doubt understands that no matter how big he talks, he would likely meet a fate similar to Saddam Hussein’s were he to provoke the U.S. and its NATO allies into an Iraqi-style invasion.
So what did he have to gain by using chemical weapons on civilians? And what did he have to gain by inviting U.N. inspectors into Syria to investigate the attack, if he ordered it? And what did he have to gain by having his troops fire upon the U.N. inspectors who were on their way to the scene of the attack, as has been intimated in media accounts?
The answer, of course, is he had nothing to gain and everything to lose. So with nothing to gain and everything to lose, it makes no sense that he’s responsible for the gas attacks.
But the rebels have everything to gain by it. They had been stopped. There was no way forward without significant Western intervention. And reports of gas attacks on civilians would give the neocon warmongers and Obama’s handlers cover for ratcheting up operations there. For the al-Qaida-backed rebels and the military-industrial complex, it was a win-win.
But while the mainstream media have jumped on the bandwagon and begun to cheerlead for some kind of response, the American people, by and large, aren’t buying it.
Polls show that only 9 percent of Americans think the United States should involve itself in Syria’s war. About 60 percent of respondents said the U.S. should not intervene. The Syrian people aren’t buying it. And there is strong evidence the gas attacks were the work of the Free Syrian Army rebel forces.
The war-weary American people understand the United States has nothing to gain by involving itself in another Mideast hellhole. There is no good side to the Syrian war.
If Obama and his warmongering Congressional allies can provide justification for another war, they should make the case before Congress. Then, per Article 1, Section 1 of the Constitution, Congress shall have the power to declare war — and bear responsibility for the action. That would be a net gain for the Constitution and the rule of law.