Public opposition halts march to war: Obama Backs Down, Seeks Congressional Okay for Syria Attack
By Dave Lindorff
The forces arrayed in Washington propelling the nation into a war against Syria, including the Pro-Israel lobby AIPAC, the cabal of neo-conservative pundits and “think” tanks, whose ranks include President Obama’s National Security Advisor Susan E. Rice, the arms industry, the oil industry and other groups, are very powerful, and it may well be that eventually sheer momentum will lead to a US bombing attack on Syria. But for the moment, a grass-roots anti-war campaign has triumphed.
Only days ago, the corporate media were shamelessly beating the drums for war, quoting “official sources” as saying the decision to attack had already been made with the only question being the timing of an attack, and with some saying bombing could begin as early as Thursday, Aug. 29.
On August 29, however, instead of a US bombing blitz there was a debate in the British Parliament on a motion by Prime Minister David Cameron to authorize Britain to join the US in an attack on Syria. It was to have been a token show of democratic debate, with the outcome -- approval of the motion -- foreordained. Instead, Cameron’s support, even among members of his own Tory party, withered, as the evidence he presented was skewered, as memories of the lies of the previous Prime Minister, Tony Blair, were revived, and as the British public demonstrated and demanded that there be no attack. Cameron, by day’s end, conceded defeat, and Britain was no longer “America’s poodle.”
Since then, support for an American attack to “punish” Syrian leader Bashar al Assad for an alleged gas attack has eroded further. Earlier this week, the media were reporting as fact Obama administration claims that the Arab League was in support of a US-led airstrike on Syrian government forces. By Saturday, the media were reporting that the Obama administration was “struggling to locate” just one Arab state that would endorse an attack on Syria.
There are no takers. Not even Saudi Arabia (which some reports suggest was actually behind the gas attack on civilians in Damascus, rather than Syrian government forces as claimed by the US), is willing to publicly back a US attack.
While French President François Hollande continues to say France would join the US in attacking Syria as punishment for its alleged gassing of civilians, French popular opposition to an attack is growing by the day, with Reuters reporting on Friday that 64% of French people opposed an attack, and 58% said they did not trust President Hollande to oversee such an action...
For the rest of this article by DAVE LINDORFF in ThisCantBeHappening!, the new uncompromising three-time Project Censored Award-winning online alternative newspaper, please go to: www.thiscantbehappening.net/node/1934