What Can America Do About Syria?

May 29 2012 @ 5:15pm

Not much, according to Philip Gourevitch:

Inevitably, there has been speculation in the press that the Houla massacre will be a "game changer"—the pivotal outrage that will propel international military action against Assad. The Washington Post editorial page, for instance, has been boosting the idea of a NATO air war in Syria for a while now. What the paper’s argument boils down to is: it worked in Libya, so why treat Syria differently? That Assad must go, as Obama has said repeatedly, is not in dispute. But the Syria hawks don’t even bother to describe who or what should replace him. In fact, as I write in this week’s Comment in The New Yorker, Syria presents, in every particular, a completely different predicament than Libya did. Given the terrible tangles of domestic, regional, and geo-strategic politics at stake, the more pertinent reference is the cautionary example of Afghanistan.

Earlier roundup of commentary and imagery from this weekend's massacre here.