Sunday, September 1, 2013

Sunday Question for Liberals

Same question as the one for conservatives:

What Democratic politicians, if any, do you tend to trust on Syria?

Outside of politicians: which writers, analysts, or experts do you tend to trust on Syria?

15 comments:

  1. Not too many politicians who jump out at me - Bernie Sanders maybe?

    For writers, James Fallows is my go to on this sort of stuff and he has been great on it so far.

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  2. I wouldn't say "trust" per se but I thought George Packer's Two Minds piece in The New Yorker nicely reflected my own ambivalence on the topic.

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  3. On the Middle East in general, I trust Juan Cole.

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  4. James Fallows


    - Ken

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  5. Politicians: None.

    Analysts: James Fallows, Matt Duss, Daniel Larison.

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  6. Stephen Walt.

    Fallows is fine, often thoughtful, but his expertise and knowledge is much better regarding Asia, rather than about the Middle East or the nature of international relations in general.

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  7. Senator Chris Murphy was sounding pretty rational on All In w/ Chris Hayes earlier this week. Making the case that congress should be consulted.

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  8. I disagree with Obama's preference on this, but I have to say that I was very pleasantly surprised by the decision to go through Congress.

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    1. Sort of a cursory thought comparing Syria to Kosovo: when Clinton sent the troops to Central Europe, the Serbs had begun an invasion followed by an ethnic cleansing, whereas Syria is acting against its own people within its own borders.

      So, the President really needs buy-in from Congress, Syria's neighbors, and hopefully the UN. Otherwise, intervention cannot even vaguely be construed as lawful.

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  9. Maybe it's not even worth flagging this but the Wall Street Journal story claiming that Syria will define John Kerry's legacy is the kind of overreaching inflammatory speculative illogical bullshit that makes the media less than useless in serious matters.

    Who do I trust? I trust nobody who insists on fighting the last war. Learn from history, yes. But open your eyes to the now.

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    1. Other than failing in his run for resident, this is Kerry's most important government position, as Secretary of State. It seems completely reasonable that his behavior and results as SoS will be a major part of his legacy. And, unlike the waffling from both sides of the aisle, his use of phrases like "moral obscenity" make his position on Syria perfectly clear.

      Since Kerry has used his soapbox as SoS to make the clear call for strong action against Syria, I thing the WSJ is right on.

      Not sure if this is a good analogy, but imagine if the Apple BoD had told Steve Jobs "sorry, we think that iPod / Phone thing is a bad idea, let's stick to making Macs" and killed it's funding.

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  10. Probably gonna get laughed out the comment section, but on foreign policy I really do trust Obama's judgment. I'm glad he decided to consult congress.

    However, my trust is not unconditional. If he decides to move against the express wishes of congress, or with only France and Turkey giving explicit support, I'll be pretty disappointed.

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