John Kerry today defended Barack Obama’s surprise decision to ask Congress to
share blame take a non-binding vote on Obama’s threat to mildly attack Syria. According to Kerry, it’s about American credibility (which apparently would not have benefited from Congressional approval prior to Friday evening):
The president then made the decision that he thought we would be stronger and the United States would act with greater moral authority and greater strength if we acted in a united way.
A post on this at Althouse elicited the comment of the day from wildswan:
If someone killed an American ambassador and we did nothing – then would we lose credibility?
If we suddenly dumped an ally who was a corrupt dictator in his twentieth year of being a corrupt dictator – would we lose credibility?
If we publicly insulted an old reliable ally – would we lose credibility?
If we stood by while the Moslem Brotherhood burned Christian churches and shot Christian priests – would we lose credibility?
Well, as far as I know it is the position of the White House that if a President allowed any of those (admittedly unlikely) things to happen or even if he allowed all of them together, none of them would affect American credibility or prestige. And so I think the same is true of doing nothing about Syrians killing each other.
And I think the President would mess up any action Congress did authorize just as he messed up the killing of Bin Laden by exposing methods and the names of secret operatives. And he messed up the good results of the surge in Iraq. And he instantly stabbed Kerry in the back when Kerry advocated Obama’s own policy of launching an attack on Syria. And he’ll stab the military if Congress approves an attack. So even if getting into Syria was a good idea it would not be a good idea under this President.
Remember, the president’s decision to ask Congress for a vote was taken after he denied he needed Congress and blustered about attacking on his own, after he dispatched five warships to Syria and after he sent Kerry out to make the case for an attack on Thursday. I guess that’s called leading from behind the curve.
Read the whole post at Althouse.