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The Very Thin Red Line… It’s Pink Really…

Obama
Obama’s so full of crap his eyes are brown. He didn’t set that red line on Syria’s use of chemical weapons you see…. “We” did.

President Barack Obama on Wednesday declared the world’s credibility “is on the line” when it comes to punishing Syrian President Bashar Assad for his regime’s purported use of chemical weapons.

Speaking at a press conference in Stockholm, Sweden, ahead of a global economic summit in Russia where he will seek to rally support for a U.S. military strike against Syria, Obama said the “red line” he set against a year ago against Syria’s use of chemical weapons isn’t his, but an international standard.

“I didn’t set a red line, the world set a red line,” Obama said. “My credibility’s not on the line. The international community’s credibility is on the line. And America and Congress’s credibility’s on the line.”

Yet the difficulty Obama faces in achieving a global consensus was illustrated at the press conference with Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt , who decried the use of chemical weapons and said he understood Obama’s predicament, but said Sweden wants United Nations involvement and a political resolution to the carnage in Syria.

“I understand the problem of not having a reaction to abuse of chemical weapons and what kind of signal that sends to the world,” Reinfeldt said, adding, “But this small country will always say ‘Let’s put our hope into the United Nations, let us push on some more to get a better situation.’ ”

Obama staunchly defended his push for a strike, evoking the death of children from exposure to chemical weapons.

“The moral thing to do is not to stand by and do nothing,” Obama said. “I do have to ask people if in fact you’re outraged by the slaughter of innocent people, what are you doing about it?”

And of course — the ever reliable lapdog ABC News (reporter Chris Good) chokes in its enthusiasm to give Obama a tongue-bath cover:

President Obama’s “red line” on Syria isn’t quite as straightforward as it’s been made out to be.

The president is facing a complicated decision on Syria. With the White House now expressing “very little doubt” that the regime of Bashar al-Assad used chemical weapons in an attack Wednesday outside Damascus, some U.S. lawmakers are calling for a military response – or at least an update on what options are being considered.

Today, the office of House Speaker John Boehner asserted that Syria had crossed the “red line” staked out by Obama last year – the use of chemical weapons on its own people.

“The Syrian regime has blatantly crossed President Obama’s red line, the White House has acknowledged, by using chemical weapons on its people,” wrote Boehner communications aide Brendan Buck, calling on Obama to consult with Congress and address the American people if he pursues a response.

“[I]f he chooses to act, the president must explain his decision publicly, clearly and resolutely,” Buck wrote.

The use of chemical weapons, itself, was not exactly Obama’s original “red line,” as he laid it out during a news conference at the White House on Aug. 20, 2012. For purposes of expediency and practicality, media outlets have simplified the “red line” as this: If Syria deployed chemical weapons against its own people, it would have crossed a threshold with the White House.

But what Obama said was a little less clear.

“We have been very clear to the Assad regime, but also to other players on the ground, that a red line for us is we start seeing a whole bunch of chemical weapons moving around or being utilized,” the president said a year ago last week. “That would change my calculus. That would change my equation.”

So President Mangina needs some help and the also ever-reliable Republican establishment is also providing cover. Why is our political class so much like Cpl. Upham from Saving Private Ryan — more than willing to use violence when it’s relatively safe and the real damage has already been done? The “use by” date on Syria is about two years past — assuming we should buy it in the first place.

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