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Thursday, October 1

Senator McCain, your boy Petraeus couldn't even oversee a CIA gun-running op in Libya without getting a US Ambassador and two CIA contractors killed. Now stand down.

I don't know whether John McCain has noticed this about himself but it's not that he's a war hawk that's his problem. It's that he can't insert himself in any American defense-related situation without making a mess of it. It's uncanny. 

The larger issue is that Members of Congress are not supposed to be inserting themselves at any kind of operational level in American defense.  Yet many of them have been doing so. Add to this the American involvement with NATO.  

The upshot for the United States has been Government by Headless Horseman.  The upshot, for too many other countries, has been chaos.

Syria isn't Anbar Province, and the clans that Gen. David Petraeus armed to fight al Qaeda in Anbar aren't the alphabet soup of jihad groups trying to overthrow Syria's government. Nor was al Qaeda's presence in post-Saddam Iraq entangled with a complex geopolitical situation that involves a score of countries including a member of NATO -- Turkey -- whereas that's exactly the case for al Qaeda today in Syria. 

Which is to say that a tactic that works in one very limited circumstance can't be crafted into a strategy for a situation that bears only superficial resemblance to the circumstance. 

Moreover, providing assistance to al Qaeda and jihadi groups allied with Qaeda is a violation of the laws by which the United States defense establishment operates. An American Ambassador had to die so the violation could be covered up.  

Which is to say, Sen. McCain, that you have become the enemy you seek to fight. Now stand down and let the Russians try to clean up the horrific mess that your fellow travelers in this country and abroad have unleashed.

Associated Press: US Complains to Russians on Their Airstrikes in Syria
CNN: Russia's Lavrov on Syria targets: 'If it looks like a terrorist, walks like a terrorist ...'

UPDATE
I just remembered. It might have been another US commander who first helped the Anbar clans arm against AQ.  If so, Petraeus was certainly involved with the operation at some point.

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