Bill Maher On Syria: "We're Basically Arming Al Qaeda"

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BILL MAHER, HOST OF "REAL TIME" ON HBO: Obama made a speech a couple of weeks ago -- remember that speech he made about the War on Terror, that wars have to end? He quoted James Madison. He said, 'no nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare.' And now we have to get into another one? Can't we sit one of them out? Does every time the bat signal go off we have to answer it?

KELLYANNE CONWAY, POLLSTER: James Madison was no competition for Bill Clinton. I think Bill Clinton helped goad President Obama into taking this action.

JONATHAN ALTER, AUTHOR: No.

CONWAY: Yes. The red line was crossed, he said.

MAHER: He looks more like a pussy doing it. When a guy says you don't do something, you're a wuss and then the next day you do it, it's like your mother coming to school and beating up bullies.

CONWAY: This is an evil man using gas against his own people.

MAHER: Oh, for fuck's sake.

ALTER: The Bill Clinton part is like a talk radio talking point. It's not what actually happened. What actually happened is that the government, Assad's government, made military advances. They're about to take Aleppo, a key strategic city, and that would be the end of the rebels.

MAHER: You mean al Qaeda? Because we're basically arming al Qaeda. I don't understand this --

ALTER: There's a peace conference. If they don't go into that peace conference with at least some victories on the rebel side, the rebels won't show up. So the president is trying to bolster them enough so they can get to the peace conference.

MAHER: It's like picking sides in Game of Thrones.

ALTER: His policy is to get rid of Assad, that's American policy.

MAHER: But haven't we learned -- isn't the lesson we learn in the Middle East wars, the easy part is getting rid of the bad guy, it's what happens next? (HBO's Real Time, June 14, 2013)

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