If Syria Becomes Obama's Vietnam

Syria is proving to be Barack Obama’s Vietnam. It is symbolic of the collapse of a politician who was transformed at the beginning. The collapse of the prestige of the greatest power in the world. The end of the era in which America was the world’s leader and “policeman.” Bad strategic decisions from the start, not only in the Arab Muslim world but in the Jewish Israeli world too. Breaking his own word. That is something to cheer the hearts of all anti-American cowards around the world who rejoice in the fall of “heroes.”

Obama’s sins are numerous, most notably his unbridled ambition and lack of political experience, hidden behind a humility and bleeding-heart liberalism that has no place (and maybe even no right) in our polished, social world.

Basically all of this is of secondary importance. Firstly, because democracy and diplomacy live off the mistakes of their opponents and the opponents of America are making, and will continue to make, many. Starting with Putin, who has to use the freedom of the U.S. press — in a country which has no freedom — to be heard by the media that matter. Can you imagine if it were the other way around?

In the second place, because policy in international relations is not — as Voltaire said about domestic politics — the money of others. For foreign politics, means — economic and military — and the ability to use them together with a firm desire to lead — which Obama has proven to not have — are necessary.

For all of this, his Syrian Vietnam has all the prospects of becoming an American victory. First of all, because of the effect it will have on the American public and electorate in the future. It is the same phenomenon that followed the defeat in Vietnam: refusing to admit defeat through an excess of new achievements and then transforming itself in a materialist triumphalism for which America is now paying the price.

In the second place, because of the weakness of America’s opponents. They are many and very jealous, from China to Venezuela, including Russia and the Arab countries. The internal problems in China are immense — human, economic, moral and ideological — and the desire to collaborate with America is greater than the desire to collaborate with Russia, which they continue to see as a dangerous opponent. As for Russia, have you ever tried to buy a product from Moscow? Russian dolls, yes, but a computer? The G-20 meeting in St. Petersburg has shown, behind a facade of 18th century splendor, the backwardness of a country that claims to be a great power with an economy that is typically colonial and lives off raw materials — the gifts of nature — but which it does not always know how to exploit.

The beating, certainly a painful one, that the Syrian Vietnam will give to America, like that of the Asian Vietnam, may also give it the drive to resume its place in the world and try to take care of the effects of the soporific cocktail of unbridled and immoral finances mixed with a leadership that is — in the broadest sense — photogenic but of little ability.

The new American era — peace to the living-room ideologists or those in the streets — has just begun. It is up to each of us to “jump on board.”

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