Perhaps the single costliest, most demonstrable crime of Barack Obama’s time in office is what he did to fuel the rise of the army of the Islamic State in Syria, which now threatens to take over Syria, Iraq and other Middle East while murdering thousands and posing an extreme terrorist threat to the U.S.
Obama claims not to have seen this coming.
But others certainly did.
Two years ago, I pointed out that Obama was, in effect, siding “with al-Qaida and other Muslim Brotherhood terrorist groups in the effort to overturn the regime of Bashar Assad” by intervening in the civil war in Syria.
“As a Syrian-American myself, I have watched Bashar al-Assad and his father before him murder their own rebellious citizens,” I wrote in August 2012. “I’ve seen them turn away visitors to Syria based on their religious beliefs. I’ve seen them host various terrorist groups. I’ve seen them impose their will on neighboring Lebanon. I’ve seen them assassinate political opponents.”
For two generations, I had observed the atrocities of the Assad leadership – deploring its alliance with Iran and Hezbollah and police-state tactics.
Nevertheless, it was easy to see U.S. intervention against Assad would not only result in “incomparably worse leadership than Assad” but an existential threat to every Christian in the region, I explained.
“America has no interests in toppling Assad,” I wrote. “Only a nation that wanted to provoke instability in the Middle East would be backing the Muslim Brotherhood. And maybe that’s what Barack Obama wants. How else can one explain America’s bizarre actions in the region?”
That wasn’t the first time I had warned about the U.S. meddling in Syria.
In June of 2012, I wrote: “There’s a certain eery consistency to the Obama administration’s foreign policy. It’s always wrong. U.S. support for the rebellion in Syria is a sad illustration. Now, don’t get me wrong. I have always been a staunch critic of Bashar al-Assad and his tyrant father before him. But, in the Middle East, the choice is often between bad and worse. And, predictably, Barack Obama has chosen worse by siding with Islamists over the authoritarian dictator with plenty of faults of his own.”
Sometimes I hate being right, but the handwriting was already clearly on the wall.
“For Americans, our prime concern should be humanitarian in a conflict like this,” I wrote more than two years ago. “While Syria is an anti-Semitic and anti-Israel police state, what will inevitably follow the fall of Assad will make the current regime look like a benevolent picture of stability by comparison.”
I further predicted a Christian genocide in the Middle East if the Syrian regime fell.
Did I have a crystal ball? No. Did I have access to intelligence briefings not available to Obama? No. Did I divine this information through supernatural powers? No.
I saw all this coming simply by understanding the players and knowing the conditions of the region.
I also questioned Obama’s justification for his plan to bomb Syria two years ago. Back then, he wanted to bomb Assad’s forces. Today he is talking about bombing ISIS forces in Syria. Why was he hell-bent on bombing the wrong side in the civil war? He claimed it was because Syria had chemical weapons and used them. This from the man who steadfastly opposed the war in Iraq, a nation that also had chemical weapons and used them against the Kurdish population and Iran before that.
Obama forgot about his plan to bomb Syria when the plan was condemned by many in Congress, but he did arm the Syrian opposition. Those weapons, some of them very sophisticated, have all wound up in the hands of ISIS, which was always the strongest component of the anti-Assad forces.
Maybe it was just incompetence by Obama when he pushed all the wrong buttons leading to the empowerment of ISIS.
Maybe it was just gross negligence on the part of Obama and his administration that directly resulted in the rise of ISIS.
Maybe it was just his inexperience or detachment or lack of sophistication that led to the new killing fields of the Middle East.
But his policies in Syria and Iraq over the last two years have resulted in a bloodbath that shows no signs of abating. His administration is floundering in its response, refusing pleas for rearmament and aid by the Iraqi government and the Kurds.
The reality is that Obama could not have done any more to help ISIS if it were his intent.
And that raises the unavoidable and uncomfortable question: Was it his intent?
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