Sunday, September 1, 2013

Best quote from the Sunday talk shows today

About the Republicans clamoring for President Obama to go to Congress about whether we should strike Syria over its use of WMDs:

"The dog has caught the car."
        --David Axelrod

However, that said, I worry that President Obama may not be familiar with the principles of war as laid out by Von Clausewitz, the 19th century Prussian officer who's still the most-quoted military scientist in the war colleges.

And I think Von Clausewitz would say that "proportionate" strikes are useless. What's useful is DISproportionate strikes. If our strike hammered every major fixed installation Syria's government has got--took out its air defense system, cratered every one of its airfields, took out every chopper and airplane they've got that's findable, and much more. The nice thing about attacking a country instead of a nongovernment operator like Al Qaeda is that every national government has lots of fixed assets that are much easier to target.

That said, politically speaking, however the Republicans construe President Obama going to Congress as him blinking, him being weak yada yada--if they don't OK this strike they're going to be the ones who are American fries-eating surrender monkeys--contrary to the Republican Party's self image as the swaggering, macho tough guys.

And if they do OK this strike they can't blame him for the results afterwards, because they'll share in those results for better or for worse. Not to mention the fact the Republicans used WMDs as the pretext for invading another country and socking America with the trillion-dollar tab--and that little boo-boo is doubtless why the Brits refused to side with us this time around. A Republican administration made a mockery of America's credibility with the world, and we'll be playing the diplomatic price for that for decades.

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