Via RCP, that sounds like a deal, no? We send our boys to be the tip of the Sunni spear in a sectarian war against the Shiites and in return Saudi and Qatari oilbags cut us a check for $100 billion or whatever. I wonder how much they’d be willing to pay for a direct attack on Iran. We could structure a compensation scheme based on casualties: 500 dead American servicemen gets us $200 billion, 1,000 dead gets us $500 billion, and so on. Put enough guys in harm’s way and we could conceivably erase this year’s deficit. Or, alternately, give Iran the right to match the offer. If they can come up with a few hundred billion, we’ll drone the Syrian Salafi nuts of their choice.

How was this offer even broached, I wonder. Was Kerry not a bit insulted at the idea of Arab dictators trying to rent American pilots as de facto Sunni mercenaries? Didn’t he once famously, in another lifetime, lament sending men off to die for a mistake? Even in the course of ruling out boots on the ground, he seems to be touting the proposal as something impressive, evidence of how seriously our “allies” are treating Assad’s aggression. Ros-Lehtinen seems unfazed too. Tells you a lot about our role in the modern Middle East that no one blinks at the Secretary of State mentioning that Sunni oligarchs would happily pay us to do their dirty work as a reason in support of going to war.