I do not believe that the interests of the United States of America would be strengthened by an attack, no matter how “surgical” it might be, on Syria. The Russians (I still call it the Soviet Union) are right in one important regard, and that is that without United Nations Security Council support, the attack should not take place. At this time, that support is not there. Part of the problem is just being a little realistic, Syria is a militarily strong nation that is being torn apart by a vicious Civil War, and the rebels, like the Sourtherners in the United States Civil War, want other nations to provide weapons and intervention. It is not, in my opinion, a war that the rebels will win. The Syrian military has shown that it will use gas warfare against the rebels, and the world is rightfully indignant at this violation of the principles of the Geneva Convention. Even Nazi Germany refrained from using chemical weapons in WWII. There are, however, many ways to show our contempt for the government of President Assad, who was a man whom the United States considered a solid supporter in the past.
Economic sanctions are certainly doable and necessary in order for us to show our disgust. Unfortunately, other nations will fill the void left by the lack of American products in the Syrian economy. The selling of weapons systems to the Syrian government is something that I believe is still taking place and stopping it is paramount. I would not be at all surprised to learn that, while we talk of bombing them, we are taking on our own weapons systems which are now in the hands of the Syrian Army. Purchased and paid for by the Syrian government. Our own soldiers were attacked by the Japanese military’s proliferation of American-made weapons and the use of American steel products in WWII.
Even old automobiles were melted down into ammunition.
We cannot continue to act as if we are sanctioned to police the world. We are still at war, the longest war in our history, in Afghanistan. I voted for this President for a variety of reasons, but one of the largest was his goal of bringing American troops home from that war. Thusfar he has not delivered.
The most effective use of sanctions includes working with the World Trade Organization. Putting a noose around Assad’s neck by refusing to trade as a World Community with Syria would be far more effective than bombing indiscriminately. Granted, the WTO is weak by its nature but it has the support of the world community, and it is recognized by every member of the United Nations Security Council.
Finally, let us visit John Kerry. Many of us remember the day that John Kerry threw his military decorations in the Potomac to protest the Vietnam War. Many of us hoped that that was the sign of a man who would strike a moral code and declare war to be the wrong way to fix international terrorism. Instead, we watch a man on television who is defending and demanding that we recognize and support the misguided goals of the United States president. If Mr. Kerry wants, I have dozens of books on the United Nations, a group the U.S. formed at Dumbarton Oaks, CA., in 1943 to 1945, which he can read that describe many of the international laws and mores which prohibit the use of force as a first offense.
I hope we reconsider what could be a heinous act. Strangely, I find both Republicans and Democrats to be against the action. Let the U.S. look first for peaceful means to right this incredible wrong that has been perpetrated on the Syrian people. Let’s try to get Assad out of there by not backing his economic or military goals. I strongly believe that he has American-built weapons systems. Let’s stop giving him those for starters. Too often, it is our own weapons that are used against us.
Then let’s take a look at America’s role in the world. I believe that too many bodies, maimed or lifeless, are being returned from Afghanistan. We do not need to ship bodies home from Syria. These veterans are our heroes. We should be protecting them, not putting them in harm’s way.