Friday, October 27, 2017

Don't You Dare Say You are Surprised

I suppose you thought that the Russian-designed Syria chemical weapons deal was intended to stop Assad from having and using chemical weapons?

Wait. What?

The United States is "very disappointed" that Russia on Tuesday cast a veto at the United Nations Security Council against renewing a mandate to continue an investigation into who was responsible for the use of chemical weapons during Syria's civil war.

Who could have predicted this veto?

The entire point of the deal was to save Assad. That was achieved, meaning the deal reached its implicit expiration date.

So Russia is now willing to defend Assad's possession and use of chemical weapons.

In the end, the deal bought time for Assad to defeat the insurgencies (with America defeating ISIL in the east and the Russians defeating or nullifying the rebels in the west), and as a bonus got the West to pay for cleaning up old chemical weapons.

Paving the way for enemies to have WMD while paying them for the honor seems to be a pattern for the Obama administration, you must admit.

Ah, Smart Diplomacy. The nuance, it burns!

UPDATE: This is what Russia is protecting:

Syria's government was responsible for a deadly chemical attack on a rebel-held town in the north-west of the country on 4 April, a UN report says.

The authors say they are "confident" Damascus used sarin nerve agent in Khan Sheikhoun, killing more than 80 people.

The Syrian government denies the report. Russia thinks it is best the world not look too closely at that denial, apparently.

UPDATE: Russia gets a benefit, of course:

Russia expects all "terrorists" in Syria to be destroyed by the end of the year and then plans to keep enough troops in the country to prevent any new conflict, the Interfax news agency cited a prominent Russian senator as saying on Monday.

They won't repeat our mistake of prematurely leaving Iraq in 2011.

And the troops will maintain naval and air bases for Russian use in the region. That's the real pay off.