Commenting on the bloody assault on the Syrian city of Idlib by Bashar al-Assad’s forces and their Russian allies, National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien stated that he does not think that the U.S. will “intervene militarily.” While Washington ought not be in any rush to go to war with Russia over Syria, writes Frederic Hof, such declarations only serve to communicate weakness and undermine American deterrence. The mistakes of the Obama administration should be sufficient to make this clear:
The U.S. Must Make Clear to Russia and Iran That Its Patience Has Limits
Israel Has Dodged a Constitutional Crisis, but Only Temporarily
Two weeks ago, then-Speaker of the Knesset Yuli Edelstein refused to hold a vote for his replacement, insisting that, in keeping with precedent, the new speaker should only be chosen after a governing coalition has been formed. As his move prevented the newly installed Israeli parliament from resuming its normal business, the Supreme Court tried to break the impasse with two unprecedented interventions into the legislative branch. To Evelyn Gordon, Edelstein acted out of a “genuine and serious concern” about constitutionally questionable moves by his opponents, even if the court was justified in its order that elections for the new speaker take place.