Commentary Magazine


Some People Never Learn

I honestly thought even fools should realize by now Syria’s Bashar al-Assad has no interest whatever in reform, peace, democracy, or anything else we’d like to see over there. Representative Dennis Kucinich, though, recently set out on “a fact-finding mission to Syria” and Lebanon where he hopes he’ll be able to help. No doubt he’ll be greeted warmly by everybody, including by Assad and his people, and he’ll come away feeling better than he did before he went there.

“Peace is a conscious, active pursuit that requires work and communication,” he said. Well, yes. That’s true. And since a predator like Assad has no interest in peace with either Arabs or Jews, he won’t do any of the work necessary to achieve it. He will continue murdering Syrians until they either kill or expel him, or until he’s killed enough of them that they finally stand down. Then we’ll have peace. It won’t come a day earlier.

You don’t have to visit Beirut or Damascus to figure this out, and Kucinich likely won’t figure it out even after he’s back from Beirut and Damascus.

I’m almost willing to write his trip off as a harmless yet useless comic diversion, but there’s a tiny chance Assad might end up fleeing Syria if he comes to believe the entire world is gearing up to smash him if he refuses. Kucinich would have a better chance at success if he told Assad, “you’re next after Qaddafi,” but he’s Dennis Kucinich (a man the Daily Show’s Jon Stewart once referred to as “a small woodland creature”), so he won’t.

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