Pat Buchanan looks at recent commentary from leading Republicans relative to ISIS, Syria and Vladimir Putin. Mitt Romney writes in Sunday’s Washington Post:
We must wage the war to defeat the enemy. … (Obama) must call in the best military minds from the United States and NATO, actually listen to what they have to say and finally construct a comprehensive strategy that integrates our effort with the Kurds, Turks, Saudis, Egyptians and Jordanians. … Now is the time, not merely to contain the Islamic State…Now is the time, not merely to contain the Islamic State, but to eradicate it once and for all.”
But Pat asks, “Why did he (Romney) not mention Russia, Iran, Assad, and Hezbollah. All of which also wish to eradicate ISIS?”
Sens. John McCain and Lindsey Graham want U.S. ground troops sent into Syria and Iraq. But as Turkey has an army of 500,000 next door and Assad’s army would happily help wipe out ISIS, why not let Arab and Turkish boys do the fighting this time?
Yet New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is ready to rumble.
“Well, the first thing you do is you set up a no-fly zone in Syria, and you call Putin, and you say to him, ‘Listen, we’re enforcing a no-fly zone, and that means we’re enforcing it against everyone, and that includes you. So, don’t test me.’”
There is simply no end to the potential for unintended consequences from poorly thought out rhetoric as outlined above. I see no mention of just exactly what national interest of America is being compromised in Syria. As for no-fly zones, ISIS has no air force. As for national interest, Russia has a significant national interest at risk, if Assad is allowed to be taken out of the game to the benefit of ISIS. Russia leases a naval installation from Syria in Tartus on the Mediterranean. This is Russia’s only Mediterranean repair and replenishment base for Russian warships headed to the the Black Sea bases through the Turkish Straits. In terms of capabilities, the Russian naval facility does not offer a lot, but a facility it is, and unlikely to be relinquished lightly by Vladimir Putin.
Pat Buchanan concludes, “If Putin wants to enlist in the war against ISIS, sign him up.”