There is a Difference Between Foreign Policy and a Soap Opera. Really.

The U.S. needs to stop harping over melodramas and Republicans in particular need to stop using Middle East Policy as a way to voice sour grapes about the re-election of President Obama...

This week has been a whirlwind of foreign policy happenings across the globe and the ramifications of these events are already being felt at home. Paula Broadwell has lost her security clearance for writing biographies and I learned more about General Petraeus’ and Lane’s personal lives than I ever ever needed to know. Who knows that will happen next week on the Real Housewives of MacDill AFB.

Your guess is as good as mine.

You’d think that these were the only events that took place this week with how the media covered them but the Middle East has conflagrated and people are only starting to realize the implications of two very serious developments over the last few days. My opinion is that it isn’t worth a hill of beans so that’s all I’m going to say about it. If you want to see the best commentary on the subject watch this clip of the Colbert Report done appropriately by Susan Lucci (yes, that Susan Lucci). It sums the entire thing up perfectly. Nothing else needs to be said. And she is THE expert on this sort of thing. Now move on. Real stuff is happening that affects people.

Syria’s year old civil war is beginning to take shape as nations across the globe ACTUALLY pledge support for a side in the fight. This week saw the formation of a Syrian Resistance Coalition much like we saw in Libya and it has begun to attract international support from countries such as France, Turkey and the Arab League.

This is the first step towards a coherent coordinated opposition that can actually make change in Syria and unseat Syrian dictator Bashar Al-Assad. At the same time this is also a period where we will need concerted and coordinated efforts on our part with Europeans and nations like Turkey to make sure that this in fact happens and doesn’t devolve further into proxy wars and ethnic infighting.

The European Union is considering lifting it’s arms embargo and is likely to do so in order to arm the Syrian Resistance.

The US needs to stop harping over melodramas and Republicans in particular need to stop using Middle East Policy as a way to voice sour grapes about the re-election of President Obama. There are real issues to be addressed. Real consequences for the choices we will have to make. We won’t get a do over. And while folks can try to wish Benghazi were Watergate it isn’t, and folks can wish Susan Lucci really could use her telekinesis to slap the reporters covering the sex scandal she cannot.

The reality is that Syria is important.

Isreal is currently dealing with a real conflict with Hamas on it’s southern border. Hezbollah to it’s north has sided with Assad. IF Assad stays in power that not only leaves a tyrant free to massacre his own people in the tens and hundred of thousands it also gives another militant group with rockets (one financed by Iran by the way) more power to push this internal conflict into a regional one with all the implications that go with it.

These are real challenges. Dangerous, difficult challenges require leadership from the White House, the Congress and real in depth coverage by the media so that the American people understand what is at stake.

Let’s focus on them and leave the **Tch slapping to Ms. Lucci.

Reprinted from State Senator Curt Thompson's (D-5th) blog. Also, check the Senator out onFacebook and Twitter

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

George Wilson November 20, 2012 at 09:07 PM
As Israel continues to pound the Gaza Strip, and factions within the beleaguered territory retaliate as best they can, there are many myths and stereotypes dominating our mainstream media coverage. Here is one of the biggest myths: Hamas started the round of fighting that led to Israel’s “Operation Pillar of Defense.” Fact: This myth represents a common error in mainstream – and even much progressive – media coverage. The “truth” all depends on when you start the timeline. What is clear is that while both Israel and resistance groups in Gaza bear responsibility for keeping the warfare going, Israel is more often the aggressor. The imminent massacre in Gaza – the protagonists: ISRAEL 125,000 armed troops 500,000 armed reservists 11,000 armored vehicles 4000 battle tanks 700 aircraft incl American F16 bombers 60 ships + 3 nuclear submarines 1000s of prohibited cluster bombs GAZA 20,000 armed militants 0 armored vehicles 0 tanks 0 aircraft 0 ships + 0 submarines 0 cluster bombs 1000s Qassam and Grad rockets Israel has the 24th largest economy in the worlds and ranks number 5 in arms exports .Yet we continue to give them over 3 billion dollars a year in aid.
Phyllis Bearden December 03, 2012 at 09:30 PM
What intelligent commentary! Thanks for this post.


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