Hollande and Obama on Syria by Brittany Elena Morris

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Twelve hours ago BBC regarded French President Francois Hollande as “too hawkish” in an article on the destruction of chemical weapons in Syria. Publications such as the Washington Times agree, and the outlets also put President Obama in the same realm.


While mild joy has been shared across the globe at the diplomacy in the US-Russia deal to rid Syria of its chemical weapons, Hollande and Obama urge that pressures should remain the same.


Contrastingly, the citizenry of both France and the U.S. concur with the media’s interpretation of the leaders’ stances: they are too disposed to a militant solution.


What’s interesting about the two leaders political leanings is they’re both considered to be socialist in some regard (Hollande obviously more so). And although socialism is by definition an economic system, it adheres to the notion that “policy should arise from the people, that [their] Labour Movement is a movement of free working men, linked together for the common cause, and that the politicians must carry out the will of the people they represent,” R.H.S. Crossman and Honorary Kenneth Younger said in Socialist Foreign Policy. (Essentially, policy is a derivative of the economic schema. Therefore policy should be a direct reflection of the peoples’ desires.)


It’s plausible to assume presidents Hollande and Obama have strayed from their political mores. More importantly, they disregard the obvious distaste their countries have for a military solution in Syria. Why?


In short, the answer – partly so – is Iran. While a media blitz followed the deliberations in the U.S. Congress after Obama initially suggested involvement, and European presses juxtaposed British Prime Minister David Cameron’s reactions to Hollande’s, Iran’s limelight was dimmed. Iran is an embarrassing menace for the U.S. and European Union and the situation in Syria is the two leader’s opportunity to have an ironclad hold on a fraction of the discord in the region. For a short while, the ever-present threat and debate on nuclear warfare has been sidestepped, making way for chemical weaponry instead.


Ironically, Hollande proposes that sanctions and other means be considered to impede Syria from using the chemical weapons – a method remotely effective when used on Iran.


The two leaders agree the deal is a stepping-stone, but no less than President Bashar al-Assad’s removal from power is acceptable, the BBC said.

Clearly the Syrian conflict is far from resolved – and whether Hollande and Obama lend their ear to the people versus their current stance will largely determine the direction the civil war (and possibly, the climate on nuclear warfare in the future).