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Middle East swamp
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Samantha Power, our new ambassador to the United Nations, is a brilliant and interesting woman who actually spoke at the Sweet Branch library 10 years ago while on a tour for her book, "A Problem from Hell: America and the Age of Genocide."

She also had the ignominious reputation as a foreign policy adviser for the Barack Obama campaign in 2008. She called Hillary Clinton "a monster" and resigned as a result of the misstatement.

Power is now faced with dealing with chaos in Egypt, a civil war in Syria, continued civilian bombings in Iraq, etc. Constructing a reasoned response to these highly unstable situations is both delicate and complicated.

President Obama has indicated that the use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime in Syria, for example, would be a red line that might provoke a response from the United States. From the perspective of Salt Lake we can only hope that Power and the rest of the president's foreign policy team will take cautionary rather than precipitous action, lest we wallow deeper in the swamp of the Middle East.

Louis Borgenicht

Salt Lake City

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