Saturday, 31 August 2013

Obama Looking Exposed

I was fully expecting to have my evening viewing interrupted tonight by a stern looking news anchor telling us that the military action in Syria has began and then some grainy live pictures of buildings exploding in huge fireballs.
Seems that the wheels have come off the blow up Syria bandwagon with the British sitting it out on the side and international support waning, no UN backing, minimal public backing in the countries with the aircraft carriers poised and Capitol Hill less than enthusiastic for another war.
Obama was strongly criticised for not consulting Congress before launching strikes against Libya which is probably why he is now saying that he will seek the authorisation of Congress before sending in the Cruise Missiles.
With just the French for company, the people who Norman Schwarzkopf said of 'Going to war without France is like going deer hunting without your accordion', Obama must be feeling very isolated especially as the evidence pretty much comes down to 'they did it because we said so'.
If the discussion in Congress doesn't go Obama's way then America may be compelled to withdraw from the decision to bring peace to Syria by firing missiles at it which leaves the French to go it alone.
Whatever the outcome, good or bad, the President may yet lose his legacy of the one oversaw a massive spying network on his own people.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

our government has been spying on us since 1970 if not earlier. if you count j edgar hoover and his abuses as head of the FBI, then it goes back as far as FDR

q

effay said...

This is what I was hoping Obama would do--finally realize nobody supports this war, and save face by punting the issue over to Congress, which, I think and hope, will vote it down. The sad thing is, Obama is not involving Congress because he agrees with our Constitution that they alone are empowered to sign off on war, he's just involving them so he can use his patented take no responsibility and blame Congress tactic.

Kudos to your House of Commons for learning their lesson (even if by a hair), growing a backbone, and standing up to Obama.

Lucy said...

q - Hasn't Obama taken it up a notch since those days?

effay - I wasn't sure if it was like the House of Commons where it is voted upon or just a courtesy thing where he tells them what he plans to do. Will be real interesting if they vote no. You are in a better position than me to hear the mood music, what are the chances of that happening?

Anonymous said...

I don't think o has pushed it Lucy. I think he lives in an era when more data can be captured at lower expense.

Watched the political talk shows all morning and it feels like the US press is really pushing hard for military action. It is the way they ask their questions. The predicate so many questions with the phrases like "but don't we have an obligation too..."

Q

Lucy said...

I get the exact same feeling from the media here q, not enough of the tough questions being asked.
Hardly any support from the public though, i really thought it was going to be Iraq all over again but even people i thought would be pro-war are against it.

effay said...

Lucy, there's some debate over how much war powers a President has. Our Constitution says only Congress has the power to declare war, but in recent years Presidents have started arguing that limited actions are not "war" requiring Congressional approval (here is a good summary of the issue http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Declaration_of_war_by_the_United_States). In this case, Obama is asserting that this won't be a "war", so he doesn't need Congressional approval, but he's going to ask for it anyway, probably too build public support. When asked today what Obama would do if he lost these votes, Secretary Kerry replied, "we're not contemplating that; it's too dire."

Unfortunately, I am now pretty confident Obama will end up winning the war votes after Boehner and Cantor, the #1 & #2 Republican leaders in the House threw their support to Obama. I watched the Senate hearing with Secretary Kerry today, and Rand Paul, by far the staunchest critic of military adventurism in the Senate, predicted it will pass the Senate easily and pass a more divided House.

Cheezy said...

Effay's dead right about the contentious nature of the President's war powers. I remember the invasion of Panama, when Bush 41 effectively presented Congress with a 'fait accompli' that didn't give the opposition any realistic chance of contesting the invasion. Ever since, the trend has been the President getting his way simply by calling these incursions 'actions' rather than 'wars'. So I'd be very surprised if the President's will was not carried out in Syria too.