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Member since: 2003 before July 6th
Number of posts: 37,305

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Obama's staff is rewriting his speech because of what happened today. That's how planned this was

@verumserum: BTW, Obama's staff is rewriting his speech because of what happened today. That's how planned this was: http://t.co/9cvXD07j0R

Russian Proposal Catches Obama Between Putin and House Republicans

WASHINGTON — President Obama woke up Monday facing a Congressional defeat that many in both parties believed could hobble his presidency. And by the end of the day, he found himself in the odd position of relying on his Russian counterpart, Vladimir V. Putin, of all people, to bail him out.

“Putin knows that everyone wants an out, so he’s providing one,” said Fiona Hill, a former national intelligence officer and co-author of “Mr. Putin: Operative in the Kremlin.” “It seems like a bold idea that will get everyone, including Obama, out of a bind that they don’t want to be in.”

“It just adds to the uncertainty and makes a vote soon a little more difficult,” said Howard Berman, a Democrat and former chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. “It just gets dragged out and causes the Congress to say let’s wait to see what happens with this before they vote.”

All of which had White House speechwriters revising their drafts before Mr. Obama addresses the nation Tuesday night in what is shaping up as one of the most challenging moments of his presidency. He hoped to explain why it was necessary to retaliate for a chemical weapons attack that, according to United States intelligence, killed more than 1,400 in Syria, but also reassure Americans the result would not be another Iraq war.


I want out of the crazy car.

We will always be in the crazy car as long as whoever we elect thinks they are the world's enforcer.

We need to greatly reduce our military to be safe from those who would constantly put our blood and treasure on the line for their own moral judgments. Presidents with god complexes are dangerous.

Diplomacy is fine, coalitions with EVERYONE equally committed is great, what we have been through lately is not acceptable.

Senate delaying Syria vote. CNN now.

Gee Obama sounds like his condition is for Assad to take control of all of Syria

And make sure Al Qaeda stops killing Christians and Alawites and other minorities through a diplomatic solution!

He wants Assad to make sure that all chemical weapons (even those in rebel hands) are under Assad's control.

I'm rather amused by Obama's conditions.

As far as I am concerned Assad giving up CW saves OUR asses.

It saves the Democratic Party from being the party of international criminals and keeps us viable.

It saves the country from bankrupting itself over hubris.

Putin just did us a hell of a favor saving us from the crazies influencing Obama who are telling him this can be a small venture. We all know that is crazy talk.

We just better hope Obama has a clue and takes the offer. He is just as ready to drive us into the ditch as Bush.

Well it looks like we avoided war. Yay!!!

Obama got what he wanted, control of CW away from Assad (which it looks like may have escaped from Assad anyway). Good for him.

Putin brokers an agreement good for him.

We avert WWIII. Good for us.

Hawks have no justification to move into Syria since killing 100,000 people isn't the problem, only the method of killing is. I guess that is the new world standard?

In any case we can't solve civil wars. No one can force a viable democracy on anyone.

Our role as enforcer of the world's norms is done.

Gabbard opposes Syria strike

U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard said she will vote against any resolution that authorizes U.S. force in Syria.

Gabbard outlined her stance in a written statement late Sunday after a week of committee hearings and a series of classified briefings with top Obama administration officials.

"I am sickened and outraged by the carnage and loss of lives caused by the use of chemical weapons in Syria," Gabbard said. "It is with gravity that I have carefully considered all the facts, arguments, and evidence and soberly weighed concerns regarding our national security and moral responsibility.

"As a result, I have come to the conclusion that a U.S. military strike against Syria would be a serious mistake."

Gabbard becomes the third member of Hawaii's four-member, all-Demo­cratic congressional delegation to take a position opposed to President Barack Obama, who has spent the past week pressing his case in Congress and to world leaders that a limited strike is needed to punish the regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad for the alleged Aug. 21 use of chemical weapons against a civilian population.


USA TODAY Poll: Opposition to Syrian airstrikes surges

WASHINGTON — Opposition to U.S. airstrikes against Syria is surging, a USA TODAY/Pew Research Center Poll finds, despite a White House campaign to convince Americans it is the right course ahead.

By more than 2-1, 63%-28%, those surveyed Wednesday through Sunday say they are against U.S. military action against the Syrian regime for its reported use of chemical weapons against civilians. In the past week, support has declined by a percentage point and opposition has swelled by 15 points, compared with a previous Pew Research poll.

"Our survey last week suggested that the administration still had an opportunity to make its case for airstrikes, as one out of every four Americans had not yet formed an opinion on the issue," says Michael Dimock, director of the Pew Research Center. "Despite their efforts, the new poll finds that nearly all of that uncertainty has turned into opposition. Not only have Republicans turned sharply against airstrikes in Syria, but Obama has not won over support from Democrats, who continue to oppose the idea by a wide margin."


Report: Saudis sent death-row inmates to fight Syria

Saudi Arabia has sent death-row inmates from several nations to fight against the Syrian government in exchange for commuting their sentences, the Assyrian International News Agency reports.

Citing what it calls a "top secret memo" in April from the Ministry of Interior, AINA says the Saudi offered 1,239 inmates a pardon and a monthly stipend for their families, which were were allowed to stay in the Sunni Arab kingdom. Syrian President Bashar Assad is an Alawite, a minority Shiite sect.

According to an English translation of the memo, besides Saudis, the prisoners included Afghans, Egyptians, Iraqis, Jordanians, Kuwaitis, Pakistanis, Palestinians, Somalis, Sudanese, Syrians and Yemenis. All faced "execution by sword" for murder, rape or drug smuggling.

Russia, which has backed Assad, objected to the bargain and allegedly threatened to bring the issue to the United Nations, said an unidentified former Iraqi member of Parliament who confirmed the memo's authenticity, says AINA, an independent outlet.

"Initially Saudi Arabia denied the existence of this program. But the testimony of the released prisoners forced the Saudi government to admit, in private circles, its existence," AINA writes. "The Saudis agreed to stop their clandestine activities and work towards finding a political solution on condition that knowledge of this program would not be made public."


Retaliation against Syria: Schatz, Hanabusa oppose U.S. strike

As President Barack Obama continues to press his case for punitive U.S. military action in Syria, at least two of Hawaii's four-member, all-Democratic congressional delegation say they are opposed to such intervention, while the others are skeptical that the move would accomplish its intended goals or advance U.S. interests.

U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa and U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz have gone on record this week opposing U.S. action against the regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad, which the U.S. has blamed for an alleged Aug. 21 chemical weapons attack in a rebel-held suburb of Damascus.

"I am a no vote on the resolution," Hanabusa said Wednesday after a campaign event. She said her position has remained unchanged by what she has learned in briefings and after listening to various positions.

She said she would oppose any measure authorizing U.S. involvement in the Syrian civil war. Obama is seeking congressional authorization for military action against Syria; a vote is expected after Congress returns to work Monday.


Tulsi Gabbard and Mazie Hirono still not committed.
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