Like all people who work in public relations, I enjoy and appreciate the language of euphemism, and my hat is off to the wordsmith who coined the phrase “cosmetic strike,” but it was a true artist who came up with the provision in the Senate Foreign Relations Commitee Resolution, voted in by 10-7, that newly adopted policy must “change the momentum on the battlefield” in Syria.  “Battlefield,” is a picturesque and tidy Victorian notion, and “momentum” is what happens at exciting moments in Notre Dame-Southern Cal football games.  This is, I guess, is what we mean by “realism” in American foreign policy.     

Michael O. Garvey works in public relations at the University of Notre Dame.

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