Putin to the rescue?

American voices against Syrian intervention are heard loud and clear by Vladimir Putin. Photo: AP Photo

WASHINGTON, September 10, 2013  The American people hear Tuesday of a deal between Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and Russian Federation President Vladimir Putin involving the surrender of all chemical weapons in exchange for toning down threats of international intervention.

If everything being reported is true, then the former KGB operative currently at the head of the Russian government has just averted World War III for now. However, there are rumors that President Obama is considering a military strike despite the newest developments in Syria.

What does this mean? What is the significance of this event?

If President Obama decides to go ahead with the strikes anyway, it means that he still intends to punish President Assad for the use of the chemical weapons in the first place despite their alleged removal. It could also mean that the chemical weapons were not the impetus for the attack after all, and another reason exists for President Obama to attack Syria. What could that be?

However for Russia to come in and act as the hero of this story would make any action against Syria by President Obama dangerous and unwise. The alleged culprit of the situation, the chemical weapons, have been removed. There is no more line in the sand to cross, and the World has avoided a potential showdown between super powers.

However President Obama has lost a significant amount of face here. He created a situation in which he alienated our closest ally when the UK voted down the resolution to go to strike, he directly contradicted himself on the war powers act from statements he made as a senator, and he allowed Russia and President Putin to diffuse the situation. The last one bears more analysis.


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President Putin, former KGB agent rumored to be a vicious and ruthless operator, who is pretty much the perfect example of a villain in any spy movie, has acted as the statesman and has offered an option that could potentially diffuse the entire international Mexican stand-off situation.

Does that sound right to anyone?

President Obama, who despite an explosion of protest against directly involving ourselves in this conflict, has pushed for military intervention for the last two weeks. The people of the United States have overwhelmingly told him no, we do not want to go to war. Yet he persists in developing options and trying to convince the public and Congress that we do not want to go to war.

We the American people have screamed at the top of our lungs, no war in Syria.

But it was not our President who heard our cries.

It was the Russian President.

Today we as the American people wake up to find that the man who has heard our voices and heard our cries for someone to tell President Obama that we do not want to go to war. So what does Russia do? Russia takes war off the table. President Putin has effectively neutralized the aspect of President Assad’s regime which President Obama has used as a cause for his intentions to strike Syria. President Obama said in his line in the sand speech that if President Assad used chemical weapons then it would “change his equation.”

Well the variable has been removed, and x no longer equals chemical weapons, it equals zero, and President Obama should be talking about how he is going to support President Putin’s plan for diffusion. In fact President Obama will probably release a statement or two claiming that this was his original intention the entire time, and people will swallow it up because they will have to justify his behavior somehow.

It is a sad day when you as an American realize that Russia and her President have acted more in line with your interests, and have responded more to your voice than the President of the United States of America.

Even if it were not their intention, The Russian Federation has answered the cries of the American people and embarrassed President Obama on an international scale.

While the American people can be overjoyed that we have potentially avoided entering a much larger conflict, we must remember and come to terms with the fact that it was not the voices of the American public, or the power of their representatives in Congress, but the diplomacy and influence of the former Cold War spy who currently sits at the head of the Russian government that responded to President Obama’s line in the sand by offering an alternative solution, and buying the sandbox. 


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Conor Higgins

Conor Higgins has a B.A. from Catholic University in DC in American History, with a concentration on guerrilla warfare on American soil. He has an M.A. in US History from George Mason University in Fairfax, VA, with a concentration on Cold War insurgency. He believes that all news and all information should be taken with a grain of salt, and implores people everywhere to seek news stories everywhere. 

Higgins is also a fervent believer in the traditional role of media, in terms of acting as a balanced check on government policies and individuals regardless of party affiliation. But in the end, he believes that no matter how heated an issue is, there is nothing that can't be discussed over a smoke and some whiskey. 

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