As I understand it, we're going to bomb Syria to punish them for using chemical weapons against the rebels, but not to destabilize or topple the regime. In effect, we're acting as NFL referees here. Assad's team Illegally Used Chemical Weapons resulting in a 23 Cruise Missile penalty and Loss of Airplanes.
Or something like that.
Meanwhile Assad will broadcast to his loyalists and allies that he withstood the might of the Crusaders and still stands, defiant and faithful to Islam and the Arabs. Of course, as B-Daddy argues, toppling the regime would be even worse than not toppling it, so there's that to consider. I'm still trying to figure out what we get out of the whole deal other than smug, self-satisfaction.
I swear, this administration never left the faculty lounge.