Thursday, April 6, 2017

A deeper red this time?

"The good guys on this planet have turned into talkers rather than doers. It is after all, the safest way to operate."   

I am going off the rails just for a minute. So please bear with me. Pretend you are at a fine restaurant having an expensive dinner. A man who is seated at the table next to yours starts to yell at his date and then calls her a vulgar name. That is too much. You go over to his table and demand he apologize to the lady. The language he used crossed the line. You then tell him to apologize or face the consequences. He mutters something at you and then calls the lady other vulgar name. You tell him he has been warned, and then punch him with all your might. After all, he deserved that and much more.

However, you hit him just as another patron was ushering an older lady by his table. When the man was falling to the ground, he knocked over the elderly lady. She breaks her hip as she falls. The man you punched then hits his head on the edge of the table and is knocked out. The man and the elderly lady are rushed to the hospital and you are arrested. After 10 days, the man dies and you are charged with his murder. The elderly lady's family sues you for damages due to her broken hip.

What is the purpose of this absurd story? To make a point. It is much easier to say something than to do something. Words can just be words, but many times actions have consequences, many times unintended. And what happened in Syria yesterday with the gassing of hundreds of innocents, crossed just about anyone's line. President Trump said it crossed many lines of his. But now what?

Here is the icky part of being in power. What to do. Send some jets over Damascus to rain terror down on Assad? Draw us into this quagmire of a civil war? First off, Syria has state of the art air defenses. We could lose jets and pilots. What is one of our pilots is captured? We are not at war with Syria. They could execute that pilot with no trial. What if we killed some Russians by accident? Would that make our new cold war hotter? Take us into a wider conflict?

Just like with North Korea and Iran, talk is much easier than actions. By our inaction over the past decade or so, we have allowed the cancers of Iran, North Korea and Syria to burrow deep into the soil. Now, to root out the evil in any of those countries, would take commitment and sacrifices that I don't believe this country is ready or able to make right now.

What do I think is going to happen in Syria? Not much. We have gotten used to being spectators to this morbid conflict. Maybe more sanctions, maybe more UN resolutions. Water off of Assad's back. North Korea is another issue however. If I were to guess where we would use our military might to right a wrong, it would be over there.

First a red line, now a deeper red line. For all we know, Assad might use Chlorine or Sarin gas again. Or maybe something even worse. And he will get away with it. Why? The good guys on this planet have turned into talkers rather than doers. It is after all, the safest way to operate.   


  1. With each passing day our new president is discovering that every big problem he faces is like Obamacare — if there were a good, easy solution it would have been found already, and even the less good solutions are more than his own party is ready to pay for or the country is ready to tolerate. Syria is just the latest.

  2. Congress has been ineffective regarding allowing military action. This strike was a great message to a number of nefarious players in the MidEast. Great Job, Navy, hope a few of them hit their targets. And Xi Ping sitting across the table.

  3. Buy Raytheon stock if this is an indication how we will wage war!

  4. Their is no legitimate successor to Assad. Remember Libya, Iraq, Iran, Egypt?