Over the Memorial Day weekend, the intrepid John McCain (R-Alzheimer’s) apparently made a heroic trip to Syria to meet with leaders of the Syrian “rebels.” His brain-dead daughter promptly declared that her dad was the “last of the badasses” for his bravery in visiting the war-torn nation.
The reality, however, is that McCain is the “last of the dumbasses” if he actually believes that the people he wants to help are interested in instituting some sort of Jeffersonian democracy in Syria. Let’s look at some of the stories that have come out in just the past 24 hours related to the Syrian “rebels”:
First, McCain claimed that, contrary to just about every bit of actual evidence, only a “small part” of the rebel forces are made up of Islamic extremists:
US Senator John McCain said on Wednesday, two days after meeting with rebels in Syria, that he is confident the United States can send weapons to fighters in Syria without the risk they will fall into the wrong hands.
“We can identify who these people are. We can help the right people,” McCain said on CNN’s program “Anderson Cooper 360.”
McCain, a Republican, is an outspoken advocate for US military aid to the rebels fighting Syrian President Bashar Assad and has angrily denounced Democratic President Barack Obama – McCain’s opponent in his failed 2008 presidential race – for shying away from deeper US involvement in the conflict, which has claimed 80,000 lives.
Critics of some lawmakers’ push to arm the rebels have expressed concerns that weapons could end up in the hands of militants who might eventually end up using them against the United States or its allies.
But McCain said such radical fighters make up only a small part of the rebels forces.
Unfortunately, the Syrian “rebels” themselves seem to disagree with McCain’s analysis of the situation on the ground:
“There is not even one battalion, in all honesty, that they can control,” the Islamic Front representative said. “These people [senior defectors in the FSA like the one the Libyans had met the night before] were placed as facades, in the beginning, as media personalities, but as real commanders on the ground? Not at all.”
The Libyan’s next question was one he would repeat or refer to 16 times over the next two and a half hours: “Why aren’t you united?” And every time, the Syrians would politely respond that their Islamist battalions were better organized and disciplined and had a clearer chain of command than their more-secular FSA counterparts, but that asking for greater unity than that was a difficult proposition.
Now, one could certainly raise the question of who is actually telling the truth. After all, it’s in the interests of each of the various “rebel” factions to inflate their own importance and dismiss the significance of the competition, right? Unfortunately, pictures don’t lie:
Senator John McCain’s office is pushing back against reports that while visiting Syria this week he posed in a photo with rebels who kidnapped 11 Lebanese Shi’ite pilgrims.
The photo, released by McCain’s office, shows McCain with a group of rebels. Among them are two men identified in the Lebanese press as Mohamed Nour and Abu Ibrahim, two of the kidnappers of the group from Lebanon.
A McCain spokesman said that no one who met with McCain identified themselves by either of those names.
So, the great military genius went to Lebanon, snuck across the border into Syria to meet with secular “rebel” leaders in order to promise them US aid, and wasn’t even able to figure out the fact that he was actually meeting with Islamists, because they pulled a dastardly trick on him and used false names?
If that’s all it takes to fool our “leaders,” we’re truly doomed.