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Publius / October 15, 2015

In Syria, a Cold War Redux

The 1980s are calling.

Remember when Barack Obama poked fun at Mitt Romney for saying Russia is our number one geopolitical foe? “You said Russia. Not al-Qaida. You said Russia,” Obama taunted during the 2012 presidential debates. “The 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back because the Cold War’s been over for 20 years.” Today, Obama looks more childish than ever, having invited the return of the Cold War through his refusal to acknowledge the Russian threat. Days into their air campaign in Syria, Vladimir Putin’s forces have killed about 150 CIA-trained rebels. Russians killing soldiers linked to the CIA? Gee, when have we heard this before? The news comes as Head of the Cuban Armed Forces Gen. Leopoldo Cintras Frias traveled to Syria with a group of Cuban soldiers — not to help defeat the Islamic State as Obama might hope, but to help drive tanks Russia gave to Syrian dictator Basher al-Assad. Just whose interests are being furthered in Syria? The 1980s are indeed calling, but repeating that era now is a bad proposition. The Russians long ago took the measure of Obama, and our nation’s leadership just isn’t what it used to be.

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