To hear the pundits tell it, President Obama had no choice but to bomb the Syrians to repay dictator Bashar al Assad for gassing them. The pundits were wrong.
As it turns out, America and Russia can talk things over, can come to a mutually advantageous agreement, can find a way to avert a global disaster.
President Obama was man enough to recognize this. He had the guts to back down after drawing that red line, even though he knew he would pay a political price.
He was aware enough to realize that personal embarrassment was a small price to pay for the lives he would save by his restraint.
Another man would’ve pulled the trigger, knowing he was doing the wrong thing. But Barack Obama was not another man. He was the kind of man who will accept a little egg on his face in the cause of world peace.
And Vladimir Putin was savvy enough to seize the way out of a standoff when it was offered.
And now, we are told, Russia and the US have reached an agreement on a plan to transfer Syria’s chemical weapons to international control.
Secretary of State John Kerry (above left, with the president) met late into the night on Friday with his Russian counterpart, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, to hammer out the deal.
No missiles were launched. Nobody died.
As that famous old warrior Winston Churchill pointed out, “To jaw-jaw is always better than to war-war.”
Churchill was right, of course.