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Obama’s Syria Policy and the Illusion of US Power in the Middle East


Obama’s Syria Policy and the Illusion of US Power in the Middle East

Gareth Porter

With the collapse of the US-Russian ceasefire agreement and the resumption and escalation of the massive Russian bombing campaign in Aleppo, the frustration of hawks in Washington over the failure of the Obama administration to use American military power in Syria has risen to new heights.

But the administration’s inability to do anything about Russian military escalation in Aleppo is the logical result of the role the Obama administration has been playing in Syria over the past five years.


Second only to international banking, the US military is a scourge on the earth, emitting more CO2 than any other entity, competing for more important needs in national education and infrastructure, not to mention killing and torturing with the only outcome chaos and mass migration. The track record of our overt and covert foreign policies is abysmal.

We had no right to intervene in Iraq, Libya or Syria. Obama is right to be skeptical of the benefits of sending US troops everywhere.


We had no business attacking Afghanistan either.
That was the key which unlocked the door to all of the carnage that has followed.
Every Democrat in Congress, save a handful, have backed this slaughter of women and children from the very beginning.
Including Hillary who claims to be a strong champion for the rights of both children and women. What a crock.


Some interesting speculation from a Russian writer.



We killed Russians and then they killed us, who would expect anything less from this idiotic engagement in Syria?
That Obama thought that he could get away with killing Russian troops without a response from Putin is what should astound and amaze everyone.
For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. Not only is that a law of nature, but it's also the first law of war.


The elephant in the room, the elephant with real power verging on control in the US, looking to manipulate us (at our cost) to serve its interests and force regime change in Syria and Iran, is Israel, AIPAC, and their neocon power brokers.


But underlying that failure is the larger reality that the Obama administration has allowed its policy in Syria to be determined primarily by the ambitions of its Sunni allies to overthrow Assad.

The 1996 position paper A Clean Break - A New Strategy For Securing the Realm lays out precisely the neocon goals of regime change in Iraq and splitting territory from Syria to separate Assad from Tehran - to "secure the realm". Evidence suggests the actual plan predates 1996.

When Obama took office he inherited the plan half finished but well underway. Clearly he had no plan of his own to reverse the mess created by his predecessors (Bush, Clinton and Bush), nor to carry the plan forward in any forceful way. Instead he temporized, making adjustments here, reacting to developments there, and infuriating both those who wanted him to continue forcefully and those who wanted him to get out.

This is no defense of Obama, in fact quite the opposite.


The article refuses to acknowledge the truth as to what goes on.

Foreign Policy, that support for terrorists , is not being set by the President of the United States. It is being set by the deep state this run by the MIC through the CIA. These guys will kill their own Presidents if he or she gets in the way.

It is a fact that in Libya and in Syria the United States of America KNEW it was arming Al Qaeda and terrorist groups. The Parliamentry Committee in the UK made that conclusion.

Intelligence agencies from several Governments were on the ground helping to launch these uprisings and covertly training and arming terrorist groups John McCain sat down and met with these guys..

This did not happen by mistake. They sought these groups and people out just as they did in Afghanistan when they recruited Jihadists to fight the old USSR.They in fact knew they were arming Al Qaeda linked groups even as they claimed Al Qaeda responsible for 9/11.

Mr Porter should stop getting information from books written by the people who participated in these crimes.The perceived "failures" in the Middle east are not due to lack of US power or influence in the region. They are due to their announced policies not being the same as what they really intend . Very much like MS Clinton they have two faces, one presented for Public consumption.

There no conceivable reason a Russia would have more power in the Middle East than a United States of America, yet their publicly pronounced goals in Syria seem closer to fruition. The reason for this is what they announce as their goals are in fact their goals. Rest assured if the US truly wanted The Saudis to stop bombing Yemen or Israel to make a just peace with the Palestinians, they have the power to make it so.


“And especially don't forget that both major parties have to support Israel because it would be political suicide for them not to.”

if both parties got together and agreed to put America first, rather than seek partisan advantage by kowtowing to AIPAC, and if the MSM served America's interests by presenting the news fairly, then the controlling power of Israel and AIPAC could finally be bought to an end, and America could do what's right, what serves America's interests, and what the American people in their informed, good judgment , want.

We are poorly served and deluded by out politicians, our Supreme Court, and the MSM.


You are undercutting your case by assuming all opposition to Obama is based on racism.

Yes, Obama's avoidance of total war in Syria and the nuclear deal with Iran went against the wishes of Neocon warhawks and Netanyahu.

But to brand criticism of the pure insanity of aiding/arming ISIS affiliated groups in Syria as racism is total nonsense.

The recent 'accidental' slaughter of Syrian troops by U.S. coalition forces, which had the 'accidental' impact of stopping an agreement to share information with Russia and coordinate with them against the ISIS pals, makes me wonder how much control Obama actually has over our military and coalition forces in Syria.

By your reasoning that must make me a racist too.


Your thinking is simplistic and self-serving and leads into a very long, black tunnel from which there is no escape.
Good luck and good night Canada.


Your equating any criticism of Obama with racist hate is a fallacious argument of the first order.


Also, in my opinion the main reason(s) Obama stepped back from invading Syria were 1) the British parliament, in a major surprise, voted against any such move; 2) the US Congress also refused to back such a move. The fact that Obama keeps repeating the lie (contradicted by two independent studies, one by the UN, the other by MIT) that "Assad gassed his own people," along with a whole raft of other lies about both Syria and Russia, makes it clear to me that he would have entered the Syrian war without a second thought if he'd thought he had the political cover to do so. To claim otherwise is simply not to see the man for what he is. That said, what will follow will no doubt be worse (unless Jill Stein were to become prez).


Nonsense. Hillary has always been with the Neocons on foreign policy. She was like that long before Trump announced his candidacy - look at her actions as Secretary of State.


Obama seems to talk on the high side and walk on the low. If he was worth his salt we wouldn't be over there doing Israel's bidding. So his skepticism is phony and he allows himself to be sucked in to the neocon policies. He's a waste.


Exactly. Bibi wants the Shi'ite crescent taken out to break Iran's influence to increase their own. Hillary and the neocons, Saudi Arabia and some others are happy to do their bidding. I read the US wants the eastern section of Syria to set up a Sunni state and have access to a pipeline from Turkey to Eurasia. Hoping to block the Russia/China plans for the same thing. That's a lose description but there's something for everyone if Syria is partitioned. Assad has to go for that to happen.


Listen you jerk.

If you are going to call someone a racist, which is what you have just done here, then you better find some statement I've made to back that claim up.

Go ahead jerk and search my comments. Surely, jerk, you can find something to prove your point.

Oh, and by the way you jerk, you can't even make your own errant point well. Here, jerk, let me help you.

You write…

No person who isn't a racist would ever try to pretend that your country is awash with it.

What you meant to write, jerk, is this…

No person who isn't a racist would ever try to pretend that your country isn't awash with it.

Got that jerk?


Go cluck yourself.


Get away from me jerk.


Find one statement I've made out of hundreds in my comment history that has even a shade of racism. The onus is on you jerk, as you are the accuser you clucking jerk.

Bugger off jerk, and go cluck yourself.


You're an idiot.

The onus is on you jerk to back up your contention that I'm a racist. Surely out of hundreds of comments regarding such issues as BLM, etc, you can find something.

You think you have me backed into a corner with your clucking questions?

Not only are you a jerk, and an idiot, but a fool as well.