"It's not goodies versus baddies, it's baddies versus baddies and that's why it's very important that we don't make a very difficult situation worse.” – Australian Opposition Leader (now PM) Tony Abbott
The increasingly erratic Senator John McCain has never seen a war he didn’t like and seems to think that the US is not getting into enough of them. It would be reasonable to expect that his Vietnam experience would have dampened his ardor for such things but this isn’t the case.
Now that Iraq is over and Afghanistan winding down, old Johno is demanding intervention in Syria, or an apology from a future President over his country’s failure to remain the world’s policeman:
Sen. John McCain has blasted President Barack Obama for his "failure" to have done more to prevent the mass atrocities inflicted on the victims of Syrian President Bashar Assad's regime.
The Arizona Republican said he's haunted by the 55,000 photos taken by a Syrian military policeman who was tasked with documenting the horrors that Assad's forces had committed against political prisoners in jail.
On the Senate floor on Wednesday, McCain said that the "future president" of the U.S. will have to apologize for not using "the power we possess" to help the Syrian people.
"Where is President Obama who has said he refuses to accept that brutal tyrants can slaughter their people with impunity while the most powerful nation in the history of the world looks on and stands by?" McCain said.
"Where is that President Obama today? Where is the President Obama who has spoken so movingly of the moral responsibilities that great power confers?
"Where is the recognition that 'the cold logic of mass graves' is right there in front of us, in Syria today? And yet our government is doing what we have sadly done too often in the past. We are averting our eyes."
During his speech, McCain stood next to giant photos on easels of the atrocities taken by the military cop who defected. The former presidential candidate has also posted several of the photos on his Twitter account @SenJohnMcCain, including one tweet which showed a photo of a child whose legs appeared to be badly injured.
"When the images and horrors of this conflict occasionally show up on our television screens, the impulse of many Americans is to change the channel," McCain said in the Senate. "But we must not look away. We must not avert our eyes from the suffering of the Syrian people ...
The current civil war is between the Hamas backed Assad regime, and the Al-Qaeda backed rebel forces, which makes it difficult to fathom why he seems to be asserting that either side is better than the other. If the rebel side is killing less people than the government it is likely the result of them not being in power.
The fate of innocents caught in the middle is a tragedy, but any intervention by the US will create the situation of their forces being caught in the middle of two sides who hate America’s guts. It would be something like sending troops into the middle of a circular firing squad.