Some aggressive leaders don’t figure the consequences in ethnic animosities like attempts by Syria to gain more regional influence. Establish democracy (“nation building”)? Can it be done in Syria? I don’t know. If it is done, will it be friendly with US? I don’t know. Lots of unknowns, but potentially unfavorable scenarios in Syria whether US go or leave.
I think, US can work politically in Syria. In my opinion, that is desirable, because that means Syria will not perform violent acts. But it is a much more difficult task because this liberal political notion may not take hold there. Perhaps economic pressures from the U.S. and the U.N. will suffice in Syria. The only way to eliminate Syrian war and violence completely is to bring them for peace talks. All US can do by strengthening economic and diplomatic relations.
Every nation has goals try to win or protect by foreign policy. Throughout its history, the US has used its foreign policy to maintain and expand foreign trade, e.g., trade agreements with European Union, Japan, China, Mexico, Canada, India; reduce worldwide unemployment, inflation, and business cycles, e.g. IMF; seek collective economic cooperation with other nations, e.g., UN, Israel, Pakistan, NATO; assist in settling disputes, e.g., Russo-Japanese War, WTO; provide humanitarian aid, e.g., post-WWI American Relief Administration, post-WWII Marshall Plan, Peace Corps; promote democracy, maintain a balance of power, e.g.
Usually, a combination of these motives govern US foreign policy and maintaining peace globally.
I don’t have any special advise on how to negotiate on Syrian peace.
But right now, I am taking an interest in many things to broaden my perspective on what is going on in Syria and what has gone on in the world. I’m tired of hearing about innocent people being killed there in Syria that has lasted too long. Let’s have a peace in Syria and start over again in that country. At least the common people can get on with their lives anew. Not that I’m optimistic about the long range effects of a change in government. There will be some people who will continue to kill each other.
So, I think, US can work politically and economically in Syria to bring peace. The only reason for the US is working hard to establish peace has always been to protect peace.