Did Samantha Power back President Obama’s Syria policy?

Saturday, January 16, 2021
By Lauralei Singsank

Samantha Power, who served on the Obama administration’s National Security Council and then as U.N. Ambassador, was among officials who disagreed with President Obama's refusal to intervene in Syria's civil war during his time in office.

Power had written a book advocating for aggressive U.S. actions against genocide. The Syrian conflict brought great loss of life, but it was not the kind of ethnic slaughter her book had focused on. In her 2019 memoir, she wrote that “we will never know what would have happened had Obama taken a different path,” but acknowledges that the risks of escalation would have been significant.

“The idealist has become wise to the ways of Washington and crafted her Syria story in a way reflecting that wisdom,” a Bard College scholar said of the book. Power has been nominated by President-elect Biden to run the U.S. Agency for International Development.

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