President Obama’s critics on both the left and right were silenced today, as his thoughtful approach to Syria has led to a breakthrough diplomatic agreement on chemical weapons.
Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov have reached an agreement for the destruction of all of Syria’s chemical weapons. Syria’s failure to comply will not result in unilateral U.S. military action, but UN enforced sanctions. This is a complicated framework that expects Syria to submit a detailed list of their chemical weapons within a week, UN inspectors be allowed to complete their work/the destruction of Syria’s production and mixing/filling equipment in November, and it calls for all Syria’s chemical weapons materials and equipment to be destroyed or removed by early 2014.
This is not the sort of agreement that comes together quickly. It is a complicated and detailed agreement that looks to have been in the works for a while. The structure of this agreement verifies the Obama’s administration’s claim that they have been working on this with the Russians for months, and it was first mentioned a year ago.
The idea that has been pushed by the Obama critics on the left that Putin rescued Obama on Syria is even more absurd and ridiculous when the details of this agreement are examined. The pressure is now on Russia to deliver Syria’s compliance. If this agreement falls through, it will be on the Russians. President Obama will get credit for the agreement and for not using the military to act unilaterally no matter what.
Syria now becomes a test of Russian credibility. Russia’s reputation is on the line. If they fail to deliver Syrian compliance, their image as a global force will take a huge hit. If Putin was really the hero, he would have been able to negotiate from a position of strength and not take such a giant risk.
President Obama’s critics on the left and right have been made to look foolish again. The President of the United States will always have more information than they do, so when critics base their criticisms on personal biases or what they think is happening, they will almost always be wrong. The Obama bashers on the left and right demonstrated exactly why they have zero credibility.
Obama has once again triumphed at home and abroad.
The agreement on Syria’s chemical weapons is a victory for intelligence and thoughtfulness. The president took a huge risk by putting himself out there, but it looks like the military threat was designed to jump start the international community and get Syria to the negotiating table. The president was playing chess, while his critics will still playing George W. Bush level checkers.
President Obama brilliantly won on Syria without firing a shot, and his critics are once again reeling in retreat with nothing to say.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association