(An attack on an upscale shopping center is especially frightening for the plutocrats because it is a kind of spiritual retreat where their families and their sycophants can go to escape the pressures of being part of the ruling class, or serving it, and find their inner selves.)
So, what do we do about Syria? Assad is behaving well, dutifully handing over lists and locations of Syria’s chemical weapons. The rebels are behaving badly, denouncing the Syrian government-in-waiting – academics and technocrats based in Dubai or Istanbul or elsewhere, anywhere but Syria, jostling each other for thirty seconds on CNN – and, probably through coercion as much as conversion, throwing their lot in with the radical Islamists who have been racking up whatever successes the rebellion has had.
I suppose Obama and NATO could get their spin doctors to choreograph a little dance which would let them change partners. But does that mean we would also have to dance with Hezbollah and Iran, who are the ones who have made sure that Assad is still on the dance floor?
We went through something similar, when we allied ourselves with Stalin against Hitler, but the excuse that the continuance of civilization is at stake wouldn’t fly in this case.
Syria sure is a nail-biter, but while an edge-of-your-seat 12-episode television series, guarantees some kind of cathartic resolution by the end of Episode Twelve, the whole drama of Syria could just fade away. The attention of the media easily could be directed elsewhere, now that we have given Russia the lead in Syria, and in a week or two the Syrian crisis would interest no one but the same few liberal foreign policy wonks who were so obsessed for so long by some place called Darfur.