Obama passes the buck again, this time to the world:
“My credibility is not on the line — the international community’s credibility is on the line,” President Barack Obama said Wednesday in Sweden…
President Barack Obama said Wednesday the “red line” he previously spoke of regarding the use of chemical weapons in Syria wasn’t his own, but the world’s. “I didn’t set a red line. The world set a red line. The world set a red line when governments representing 98%” of the world’s population “passed a treaty forbidding (chemical weapons) use, even when countries are engaged in war,” Obama said in Sweden.
We can go back to that recurrent question: does Obama actually believe this is the case, or is he just saying it for face-saving effect? I believe the answer is: both of the above. As I wrote yesterday, one of Obama’s guiding principles is internationalism. His understanding of the international community, however, seems to have stopped at the level he achieved as a Columbia undergraduate.
The international community doesn’t really care about its treaty or its credibility. Or rather, it “cares”—words will be spoken, but words are not acts. The international community is composed of nations, and only sometimes do a bunch of those nations of the international community come together on something and act. To Obama, considering the self-interest of the US is a foreign notion, but foreign nations do consider their own self-interest first and foremost, and it’s not at all clear that he gets that concept.
[NOTE: There is so much news on the Syrian decision that I’ll just refer you to memeorandum, which has links to many articles and posts on the subject (go here and start scrolling down) This is of interest as well, as is this.]