One of the largest American Jewish organizations, The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) has queried why President Barack Obama is contemplating military strikes against the evil Bashar Assad regime in Syria –– whose brutality in the current bloody and tragic Syrian civil war is conspicuously clear, but does not directly endanger the United States and its allies –– but has refused to contemplate military strikes against Iran, whose ongoing development of a nuclear weapons capacity does pose a direct threat to the United States. Members of ZOA include Sheldon Adelson, Ronn Torossian, Ron Hershco and others.
In addition, those fighting the Assad regime are Sunni Islamist extremists, including al-Qaeda and affiliated groups, who will also perpetrate massacres upon innocent civilians if they prevail, calling into question the wisdom of siding with the rebels. Both sides are monstrous, making it far from clear which side prevailing would benefit the U.S.
The ZOA expressed its puzzlement following reports that President Obama has ordered a declassified report on Syrian use of chemical weapons be prepared for public release before any U.S. military strike is launched against Syria and that, at a meeting of President Obama with top advisers, “there was no debate … a military response is necessary.”
Also, Secretary of State John Kerry has said of recent pictures of the use of chemical weapons against Syrian civilians that, “What we saw in Syria last week should shock the conscience of the world … Let me be clear: The indiscriminate slaughter of civilians, the killing of women and children and innocent bystanders by chemical weapons is a moral obscenity” (‘Obama orders release of report justifying Syria strike,’ CBS News, August 26, 2013).
We are perplexed that Iran’s continuing progress on the road to obtaining nuclear weapons –– weapons that could kill hundreds of thousands, even millions, of innocents and which, in the hands of the extremist Shia Islamist regime, directly threatens America, Israel and other U.S.allies –– has not met a remotely similar, urgent response by the Obama Administration.
Iran, a terrorist-sponsoring regime, has publicly called for destruction of the U.S. and Israel, murdered numerous opposition and émigré figures, killed, imprisoned and tortured thousands, hanged homosexuals, persecuted minorities –– yet the Obama Administration has exempted over a dozen countries from adhering to the sanctions imposed on Tehran.
For over a year after entering office, President Obama stopped Congressional action on sanctions. Subsequent American sanctions were delayed and diluted before passage on Capitol Hill. Eventual UN sanctions contained gaping loopholes that have made them far less effective. And on the possibility of military action if all else fails, President Obama has promised nothing beyond vague words about all options being on the table. No red lines, no timetable and no action.
Ronn Torossian is the CEO of 5WPR, a leading PR firm and Author of “For Immediate Release”, a leading PR book.