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View Diary: No, Putin isn't being smart. Obama is running rings around him (253 comments)

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  •  Agreed. A lot of the praises for Obama (8+ / 0-)

    (ZOMG SO SMRAT!!!) seem premature, and there's plenty of time for things to go south. And the idea that Kerry's offhanded remark that got the diplomacy ball rolling was somehow planned is pretty laughable.

    But what we know is that Obama is being deliberate about this and pivoted well when Kerry (and then Putin) gave him an out. We have an Executive Branch that doesn't seem to see its job as starting wars and then finding justifications for them — that fact alone is worth appreciating.

    (I suppose it could all still be kabuki, but for the moment I'm willing to suspend my cynicism just a bit.)

    Code Monkey like freedom / Code Monkey like peace and justice too
    Code Monkey very nerdy man / With big warm fuzzy bleeding heart
    Code Monkey like you!

    Formerly known as Jyrinx.

    by Code Monkey on Wed Sep 11, 2013 at 02:34:23 PM PDT

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    •  You may not know that there is evidence the deal (24+ / 0-)

      has been in the works for over a year, long before the sarin attack.

      Smartypants links to a USA Today article (scroll down that page) saying that the discussion between Obama and Putin started in Los Cabos, Mexico at last year's G20 in June, 2012.

      If so, then that Kerry remark in London was hardly offhand.

      The chemical weapons problem in Syris is longstanding, and one that fits with Obama's history. WMD, especially nukes, but also chemical and bio weapons, was his signature issue when he was in the Senate. So it's hardly surprising that he's still pursuing it.

      Enjoy the San Diego Zoo's panda cam! Now with new baby panda! And support Bat World Sanctuary

      by Fonsia on Wed Sep 11, 2013 at 03:27:49 PM PDT

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    •  Yeah. The 'Kerry's oops was the pre-planned (5+ / 0-)

      tactical lynchpin' movement here is...something else.

      Do most folks know the State Dept walked Kerry's oops back twice Monday afternoon?  Here's different SecState spokeperson at regular daily briefing later Monday afternoon spin-spin-spinning away from the reporter's questions:

      Ouch, man

      Fave:

         Q: I’m interested why you keep putting this on the Russians because Lavrov did not make this statement until after he found out about what the secretary had said.

          MS. HARF: But the secretary was not making a proposal. The secretary was making –
      ---
          The secretary was making a rhetorical statement.
      And you read the whole quote, which I actually appreciate you doing. Look, he’s not about to do this. That was — that’s what — that’s what the –

          Q: But how do you know that?

          MS. HARF: Because everything — look...

      Because everything!  Yeah, that's Strategery Brilliance in action, folks.

      As of 9pm 8/30/13: RETIRED Pie Warrior. Substance over Sh*t Flinging (as best as I am able) ~ JV

      by JVolvo on Wed Sep 11, 2013 at 04:43:50 PM PDT

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      •  Not uncommon when one is the carrier (5+ / 0-)

        of a message that doesn't match the saber rattling public face.  Nuance seems to be lost to Americans.  I blame reality TV.

        I'm not looking for a love that will lift me up and carry me away. A love that will stroll alongside and make a few amusing comments will suffice.

        by I love OCD on Wed Sep 11, 2013 at 05:53:35 PM PDT

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      •  Such a strange moment, (0+ / 0-)

        given that this exact option had been floated at the G20, and this was confirmed by the Kremlin's press secretary.  The most likely explanation is that the admin had discussed it with the Russians, but didn't approve making it public while they were pushing for the President's favored strategy to make it through Congress.  Kerry flubbed by mentioning it, they tried to walk it back, but the cat was out of the bag, so they're trying to spin that flub positively.

        I really, really don't see Obama running rings around anyone during this whole debate.  He's been doing some good work in the background working with Russia to find a solution, but his public game has been kind of a mess.  

        Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

        by pico on Wed Sep 11, 2013 at 07:45:40 PM PDT

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    •  Today's Times had this to say (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      PsychoSavannah, Sylv
      While the proposal appeared to come out of the blue when Russia made it public on Monday after a seemingly offhand comment by Secretary of State John Kerry,
      [snip]

      The discussion about Syria's unconventional arms first came up between Mr. Obama and Mr. Putin when they met on the sidelines of a Group of 20 summit meeting in Los Cabos, Mexico, in June 2012 according to accounts of several administration officials who requested anonymity to describe internal and diplomatic conversations.  Their meeting was dominated by their dispute over Syria and the civil war, but according to aides, Mr. Obama mentioned the issue of securing Syria's stockpiles of chemical weapons.

      [snip]

      It went nowhere because the Russians were highly resistant to any intrusion in Syria's internal affairs.

      "It ain't right, Atticus," said Jem. "No, son, it ain't right." --Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird

      by SottoVoce on Wed Sep 11, 2013 at 07:16:45 PM PDT

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