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As much as I agree with both of you on a personal level and want the United States to stay out of all of the upheaval in the greater middle east, I just don't see it happening. We are so intertwined in that region that the President has found himself in a box. I definitely believe that President Obama doesn't want to touch this with a ten foot pole, but sometimes events on the ground spiral out of control in a way that will force him to act whether he wants to or not.
We must remind ourselves that the middle east is much different than the forgotten continent of Africa. The strategic stability of this region is a top national security concern for our government
, as much as I'd like it to be other wise. When you look at the number of US and allied military installations in the middle and near east, it just seems a near impossibility for us to stay neutral in these conflicts.
Fareed Zakaria is correct when he says that Syria is in danger of becoming another failed state. The tide of the civil war has definitely shifted, no doubt because of the help of Hezbollah and Russian arms, but that doesn't mean that those who started this insurgency are just going to roll over. They are still getting arms from friendly countries in the region and the European Union just lifted its embargo on the Syrian "rebels." Russia is just as deeply involved in this because the Syrian city of Tartus is home to their only naval base in the Middle East. They don't want to see that taken away from them from a likely far less friendly Sunni government that would replace President Assad.
My guess is that violence will continue to go on for a long time and that Syria will eventually be broken up along religious lines, which will only encourage more violence. It's going to be a messy situation for many years to come.