Military action in Syria is coming, and it won’t be pretty. Though my words do not carry any weight in this, perhaps a reminder of what is at stake by someone more well-known than myself might be appropriate in this circumstance.
“I don’t oppose all wars. What I am opposed to is a dumb war. What I am opposed to is a rash war. What I am opposed to is the cynical attempt by […] weekend warriors in this administration to shove their own ideological agendas down our throats, irrespective of the costs in lives lost and in hardships borne.
What I am opposed to is the attempt by political hacks like [Jay Carney] to distract us from a rise in the uninsured, a rise in the poverty rate, a drop in the median income, to distract us from corporate scandals […]
That’s what I’m opposed to. A dumb war. A rash war. A war based not on reason but on passion, not on principle but on politics.
Now let me be clear: I suffer no illusions about [Bashar al-Assad]. He is a brutal man. A ruthless man. A man who butchers his own people to secure his own power…. The world, and the [Syrian] people, would be better off without him.
But I also know that [al-Assad] poses no imminent and direct threat to the United States, or to his neighbors…and that in concert with the international community he can be contained until, in the way of all petty dictators, he falls away into the dustbin of history.
I know that even a successful war against [Syria] will require a U.S. occupation of undetermined length, at undetermined cost, with undetermined consequences.
I know that an invasion of [Syria] without a clear rationale and without strong international support will only fan the flames of the Middle East, and encourage the worst, rather than best, impulses of the Arab world, and strengthen the recruitment arm of al-Qaeda.”*
This action is ill-advised, ill-conceived, and can only end badly.
*Illinois Senator Barack Obama Speaking against the Iraq War October 2002 Federal Plaze, Chicago, Illinois