Psaki Can’t Say If Syria Strategy is Working

'It's not about being right or wrong'

• November 13, 2014 4:52 pm


State Department Spokesperson Jen Psaki struggled explain why the State Department and Obama administration have not re-evaluated their failing strategy on battling the Islamic State in Syria.

Speaking in her trademark State Department-ese, Psaki repeated trite lines from the administration, claimed "there's no military solution, there's only a political solution," and called the strategy "an ongoing discussion."

Associated Press reporter Matt Lee took Psaki to task, asking why there had not been a formal review of the administration's strategy in combatting IS (ISIS or ISIL) in Syria.

"I think there’s a difference between conveying that there is a new formal review and the president has asked for a new range of–launched a new formal review–and the fact that this is an ongoing discussion for months," Psaki said. "And we will continue to adjust and make decisions about any additional options we’re considering."

Psaki admitted "no one is satisfied with where things stand," which prompted Lee to ask his question again. What followed was perhaps the greatest non-answer in the administrations

"Because there is a difference between conveying–as you all know, because obviously no one would be asking about it if it wasn’t stated in the way it was, asking about–or announcing there’s a new formal review and an ongoing process that we have had in the administration, meetings multiple in a week that the secretary participates in about our ISIL strategy, about our Syria strategy, that’s been ongoing," Psaki said. "There have been a range of decisions that have been made along the way."

Lee sifted through the nonsense and managed to draw a conclusion from Psaki's diplomatic drivel.

"So the bottom line is, you're saying that there hasn't been a decision made by the president or the secretary or anyone that you report to that what you're doing needs to be–is wrong or is bad or not effective and needs to be fixed?" Lee asked.

"Our view, Matt, is that it's not about being right or wrong, it's about continuing to discuss and adjust to the situation on the ground," Psaki said