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View Diary: Taking Occam's Razor to the Syria diplomacy debacle (104 comments)

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  •  My suspicion: (1+ / 0-)
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    frostbite

    Obama all along dreaded being boxed into the "humanitarian bombing" of Syria and so kept open a back door for informal talks with Lavrov and Putin about a diplomatic option.

    But until this diplomatic option could be agreed upon Obama's first priority at home was to get Congress to authorize a US strike. He used Kerry as attack dog for this. It required a blunt approach: overheated bellicose rhetoric and appeals to emotion rather than reason (a calm and reasoned argument would never sway the Senate or House). Kerry is much better suited to that than Obama.

    I don't think Kerry was entirely prepared for the sudden shift back to diplomacy. The shift made him look a little ridiculous and at the least "out of the loop." He may have been kept partly out of the loop; he may not have understood how much Obama was now wagering on getting a diplomatic breakthrough.

    In other words, Obama and Kerry played "good cop"/"dumb cop."

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