It is reported that over 400,000 civilians have died during Syrian conflict in the past five years. This week it culminated in the refugee stampede out of Aleppo, as the Syrian government with assistance of Russia, basically bombed that city into the Stone Age.
In the early stages of the Syrian conflict the Obama Administration threatened “redlines” that the Syrian government then crossed without consequence. The Administration also boldly announced on various occasions that the regime of Bashar al–Assad’s days were numbered. Yet the tyrant remains in power years later.
While the situation in Syria is complex, it is clear that the United States and its allies have failed to stem the carnage. This has not only led to misery for the Syrian people, but also a strengthening of the positions of Russia and Iran in that part of the world.
Irrespective of history or the facts, the Obama Administration refuses to knowledge the shortcomings of its policies relating to Syria. This was exemplified this week by an exchange between Associated Press correspondent Brad Klapper and State Department spokesman John Kirby. During that exchange included in the video below, Klapper asked what changes the State Department would make to its failed Syrian policies:
BRAD KLAPPER: You failed repeatedly doing the same thing over and over again, which is a combination of trying to bring together people in some sort of talks with an imperfect ceasefire. Then when things go badly you get really angry and accuse them of war crimes or crimes against humanity and then nothing ever changes.
You haven’t succeeded once. You’ve talked about successes sometimes with Russia which looks to everyone like tactical retreats and momentary pauses. So what are you doing differently to prevent more of the same?
After significant obfuscation, Kirby then rejected any US culpability in the Syrian carnage stating:
KIRBY: What I disagree with is where the failure lies. The failure lies on the part of the regime and its backers to act with any sense of moral standards for human behavior.
Kirby’s diplomatic two-step would be comical if the resulting policies were not so devastating for the Syrian people. While the options available to the US may have been limited, it is clear that those implemented by the Obama Administration failed. The government’s unwillingness to admit to this obvious reality demeans its credibility. This obfuscation is repeated on a daily basis by governments worldwide, which has led to a growing chorus of discontent by the People. This discontent was exhibited in the UK’s vote for Brexit, Italy’s recent referendum that led to its prime minister resigning, and the election of Donald Trump in the United States. The ruling class worldwide is tone-deaf to those that they are supposed to serve. We can expect more of the political elites to be thrown out of office at the People’s discontent rose. Less certain is the quality of the replacements.