Moment of Truth

This week sees the start of the debate that Barack Obama has been forced to call to gain support for the intervention of the United States in Syria. The polls are showing a very steep climb to gain the support he needs.

Monday will see an interview with Assad ARLINGTON, VA; September 8, 2013–PBS’ Charlie Rose will interview Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on Monday, September 9, at 9 p.m. in a special presentation of CHARLIE ROSE. In this global television exclusive, Assad gives his only television interview since President Barack Obama asked Congress to approve the use of force against the Syrian regime for alleged use of chemical weapons against the Syrian people.

Rose has interviewed Assad twice before, once in 2006 and once in 2010. The timing could not be better for Assad as he has opportunity to have his say before the President and logistically would be the only possible time he could persuade the very few that believe an attack on Syria is legitimate, which in any shape or form is really getting the upper hand on the President from the get go.

Tuesday Its probably significant it comes ahead of Tuesdays meeting as Obama goes to Capitol Hill to meet with Senate Democrats on Syria. and what seems to be attempts to delay by Ron Paul who has made little secret of the fact that he will use delaying tactics as long as he can.

Those tactics include filibustering to exhaust available time for debate and indeed at some stage increasing the time of debate, and in either case stalling to make the possibility of intervention less likely to the extent that if hung out for long enough would get to a point that action, any action becomes mute as it is coming to late.

Wednesday may well see a vote in the house, which is make or break for Obama. So far he has changed the red line of Obama to being the red line of the world so damage controllers are obviously working overtime. Presumably the loss of the vote on Wednesday could be attributed to congress wanting a say, therefore he allowed them the choice and he will abide by it (rather like David Cameron) and in that event its congress decision, therefore their fault.

The problem of course is that there is little support, little evidence and little stomach by Americans to join another war, even limited, even a short sharp knock on the knuckles because the public at large see how easily this could get out of hand. Obama apparently does not see it that way.What does not help him is a video of a summary execution by rebels of Assad’s soldiers that surrendered.

Kerry says there is a lot of support by other countries….. He said the foreign ministers discussed the “possible and necessary measures” needed to deter al-Assad from using chemical weapons again. Kerry said a “number of countries immediately signed on” to an agreement reached by 12 countries on the side at the recent G20 summit. And while he named Saudi Arabia as one of those nations, he said the others that had agreed to help would make their announcements in the next day. But we have yet to see the double digit countries quoted by Kerry. However this sentiment was not echoed by White House chief of staff Denis McDonough.

There are so many pitfalls in the current scenarios that will a very significant moment of truth for Obama. But the odds are not looking very good for a successful outcome for the Obama administration

 

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