Is the polling on this robust? Probably not. A majority will probably wonder why we didn’t do anything as more and more images of slaughter come across the news. The way to evade that might be to make a big deal out of Russia vetoing in the UN, but then Americans aren’t fond of our leaders who take no for an answer from the UN.
Clearly, British politics won’t allow for another U.S.-led middle east venture without more and I imagine U.S. politics won’t allow for one without even the British.
If we are politically unable to act in Syria (as opposed to pragmatically; I’m not sure there’s anything we can do, not sure there isn’t either) it will be because of Bush’s failure in Iraq and the fraudulent pretenses that got us there. For a decade, I’ve warned of something like this happening, but I always expected it to be in relation to Iran.
Just like the Cambodians felt the effects of our policy failures in Vietnam, the Syrians are going to feel those effects from Iraq.
With Egypt and Syria collapsing, it might be a good idea for Kerry to get back to Jerusalem.