Now, I'm not suggesting that this is anything but the ravings of a delusional tyrant trying to put on a brave face for his people and the rest of the Arab world, but, what if Assad's charges are true?
"There is a plot to break Syria apart," Assad claimed. "It began with incitement on the internet and on Facebook, and moved on to the media and the street. We were able to stop the American-Israeli plot."
"Whoever is part of the Syrian nation always stands tall," Assad added. "Our enemies act every day in an organized and public matter in order to harm Syria."
Assaid said the protesters are "smart in their timing, but stupid by choosing a country that will not be defeated by any step."
You see what I mean about a "brave front". Kind of like Bush in the days of Osama: Dead Or Alive. But I digress...
Is this that far-fetched a charge? I don't think it is. After all, Obama has struck me as the kind of man who plays his cards close to the vest, and wouldn't hesitate to proffer a back-door way of deconstructing tyranny that does not involve violence unless it's absolutely necessary.
It sure would explain his curious "hands off" approaches to Tanzania and Egypt, as well as his wisely delayed decision to attack Libya and only with UN support (however you may feel about the attacks, and I oppose violence flat out, the delay is what I'm focused on here.)
And it really can't be denied that there's a certain apparent orchestration to events as they've unfolded across the Middle East and North Africa: first Tanzania, then Egypt, Libya, Yemen, Syria, and soon perhaps, Iran.
Too, it's not the sort of strategy you'd want to telegraph, whether Israel is involved or not. And they may or may not be, that's not the point. The point is they benefit from these changes, assuming the regimes and governments that rise in these nations are democratic and populist.
I say "populist," because I think the Arab street is just tired of fighting Israel's existence and are willing, however grudgingly, to leave them be.
Meanwhile, Israel has been preparing what Ehud Barak calls a "diplomatic tsunami" behind the scenes. Break Syria, and you break the attacks from Lebanon and Hamas. Mostly. There's still Iran to deal with but without a strong Syria to partner with, they'd have to expose their hand in attacking Israel. That's something I think the Iranian people would be upset about. A lot of rhetoric against Israel comes from Ahmadinejad and the Ayatollahs, not a lot from the people, who have stirred the pot in the past against their regime.
It's possible Obama may have earned his Nobel after all.