Doesn’t Obama know that the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) has bulldozed the part of the Syria/Iraq border that it controls? Doesn’t he know that there are no significant forces in Syria that want a secular state, but only various bands of pro-Sharia Islamic supremacists? Doesn’t it occur to him how incoherent it is to want to arm these people in Syria and fight against them in Iraq? For there is no significant difference between the “rebels” fighting Assad and the “extremists” fighting Maliki.
“Obama seeks $500 million from Congress to help moderate Syrian rebels,” Reuters, June 26, 2014:
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama, under pressure from some lawmakers for greater U.S. backing for Syria’s opposition, on Thursday asked the U.S. Congress approve $500 million to train and equip moderate Syrian rebels seeking to oust President Bashar al-Assad.
A White House statement said rebels would be vetted before being given assistance, in an effort to assuage concerns that some equipment provided to the Syrian opposition might ultimately fall into the hands of U.S. enemies.
Obama has been under strong pressure from some lawmakers, such as Republican Senator John McCain Of Arizona, to increase assistance to the rebels in Syria’s three-year-old civil war. Some lawmakers have accused Obama of being passive and indecisive for months, allowing Assad to repulse a threat to his government.
Obama’s request for $500 million followed through on a promise he made in late May in a foreign policy speech that he would “ramp up support for those in the Syrian opposition who offer the best alternative to terrorists and brutal dictators.”…