It’s hardly surprising the administration was eager to paper over a story that showed the cracks in its jerrybuilt Syria policy. After all, just last August Obama pledged that “seeing movement on the chemical weapons front, or the use of chemical weapons” by Assad would mean the Syrian dictator had crossed a “red line” and would trigger a U.S. response. If Assad had already used those weapons, that would mean Obama blinked.
The leak itself showed that even inside the administration there is a gnawing suspicion that the president’s Syria policy has come up short. The president has let a humanitarian crisis grow to enormous proportions during the last 24 months. Further, Obama has squandered an opportunity to advance American interests by toppling Iran’s only Arab ally, and has imperiled U.S. allies on Syria’s borders by failing to contain a crisis that is spilling over into Turkey, Jordan, and Lebanon and may cause trouble for Israel as well. (Weekly Standard, Posted 25 Jan 13)