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Saturday, September 7, 2013
Obama, War on Syria, Assad: Four Predictions from bad to worst...
Despite what they say, Americans are fascinated with the Middle East. In keeping with this tradition I offer the following predictions for that hungry audience about a war on Syria by Obama. The first two have non-terrible results, the third is unclear, and the fourth is catastrophic. 1. Obama-United States-France (former colonial power!) attacks Syria in a perfectly scripted way, just as he said he would, with little retaliation from Assad and Hezbollah. The targets are precisely those announced publicly resulting in few losses that could change the outcome of the civil war. This is the most postmodern, hyperreal outcome. It is exactly what Baudrillard wrote of the Gulf War but this time it would be even more perfectly staged (requiring Russian help). Probably no one would be wholly satisfied with the aftermath because it would be little changed from the present (9/6/2013). The same grumblers would still grumble. 2. US Congress says no and Obama sets a precedent to restrain future presidents from adventurism and wag-the-dog scenarios. This result is the liberal favorite. 3. Obama-United States-France (former colonial power!) attack Syria and Hezbollah massively (not in a limited way as he said he would) destroying the deterrents set up by Assad and Hezbollah. Retaliation is impossible. This is the AIPAC favored outcome. 4. Obama-United States-France (former colonials!) attack Syria but forewarned on the timing by Russia, Assad and Hezbollah launch everything they have at every enemy in sight (following a use-it-or-lose-it logic). The reprisals and counter-reprisals lead to full scale war or even world war. (You may notice that none of these predictions have anything to do with the use of gas). END