Obama delays

… and quite right too.
Even though the scope and ambition is much more limited than previous military interventions in Kosovo, Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, quite what has happened in Syria (that requires a response) has not been fully understood.
With time, this may turn out to be a surprising statement, but the response to the British Parliamentary debate by the US government included sharing more information about why they were so certain that the Syrian gov’t had gassed its people.
Nor is the nature of what a military reprisal might be understood. Again, commentators might gasp at notions that we might have to explore in public the nature of any military action when such discussion makes the success of any action lower in its own narrow terms.
But it’s right to be clear about how a limited action will make things better.
Bizarre then to hear some political commentators say Obama’s delay is a sign of political weakness. It takes strength to be ready to rehearse the arguments in public for a further 10 days.

Cameron’s dash makes him culpable

Let’s acknowledge that political point scoring over today’s consideration by the House of Commons is problematic when many people are still trying to work out just what is the appropriate way forward.

There’s been an atrocity, but it’s not fully understood (and there was a chance for it to be explained more clearly soon).

The way forward being painted by David Cameron was not understood, neither in its purpose and design; nor its legality, extent and likelihood of success.

Cameron is culpable cos he called Parliament back early, yet he actually needed time to work things out.

Slightly concerned by outcome – there will be no intervention with Britain taking part – cos I think message was ‘take time to work out what’s happened and argue a way forward through the UN’.

Note BBC tv commentary in response to opening speeches that Ed Miliband had the worst of it and Cameron wold win the vote looked pale ten hours later.