September 5, 2013
Published: September 6, 2013
“Members of Congress are preparing to make a tough decision on whether or not to support President Obama’s call for a punitive military strike against Syria for the use of chemical weapons against its own people.
Many Republicans encouraged military support of the Syrian rebels early on in this civil war at a time when a clear path to victory was probable — and the insurgents were independent from more radical Islamic elements. Much time has passed since; and this option — whether advisable then or not — is certainly unwise at this juncture.
For now the tactical and political situation has changed. The Syrian rebels contain significant Al Qaeda elements. President Obama has telegraphed his intentions for retaliatory air strikes for the use of chemical weapons. In response, President Assad has reportedly scattered his remaining chemical weapons stockpiles throughout civilian neighborhoods. Many key U.S. allies have already publicly renounced participation in any U.S.-led military action. The only thing that President Obama HAS promised is that no U.S. soldiers will invade Syria. As of now.
So we must ask why a military attack that produces no regime change, cannot destroy significant amounts of chemical weapons and does nothing to further American security interests in the Middle East (and that may actually empower an Al Qaeda-led government) is possibly the right course.
I oppose military intervention of any kind in the Syrian civil war at this time because such action would fail the ‘Reagan Test.’ It’s not in the vital interest of American national security.
I do urge the President to publically condemn Russia and Iran for their support of the reprehensible Syrian regime – even in the face of its use of genocidal weapons against its own people.
But Americans should know that it was President Obama’s feckless foreign policy that led to the consideration of these “best worst options” in the first place. The only ‘Red Line’ that should have been drawn in the Middle East in the past four years is through President Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize.”
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