A long overdue blog is finally here. The giant elephant in American news lately has been what we should do in Syria. I mean the country is in the midst of a bloody civil war. It is such a critical situation for the United States because…oh wait. Want to know what really is a critical situation to this country? We have an impending government shutdown again and the need to raise the debt ceiling again soon. We have crumbling infrastructure and a sluggish (although continually improving) economy. Not to mention that Detroit just filed the largest bankruptcy case in US history. We have skyrocketing education costs, student loans, and every possible effort to block the implementation of the Affordable Care Act. So with all of these problems at home, why are we even considering taking action in Syria? Not to mention that we have absolutely nothing to gain from intervening and a whole lot to lose.
For starters, Republicans have been screaming that spending is out of control. They’re also screaming that they will die before raising taxes on millionaires and billionaires. So the big question is where is this money going to come from? I’ll gladly tell you where: Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security, and education. These four have been under attack for several years and there’s no doubt that there will be cuts in these programs to offset the costs of any military action in Syria.
The next problem is that this situation is completely different than the situation in Libya. In Libya, the protestors were virtually united against Ghadafi, and had several strongholds in major cities to set up a defense. Syria is quite the opposite. There are several loose confederations of protestors wanting to see the ouster of Bashir al Assad, including Al Nursa which is led by Mohammad al-Golani who has ties with Al-Qaeda. The last thing that the United States, or Israel for that matter, needs is a radicalized Islamic state in Syria that serves as a base for Al-Qaeda.
So let’s just be honest and call it for what it is. The US has a strange obsession with military action. President Obama is trying to get his two in to match his predecessors. For Obama it’s Libya and Syria. The younger Bush has Iraq and Afghanistan of course; Clinton has Bosnia and Kosovo; the elder Bush had Iraq and Somalia; Reagan has Beirut and Grenada…noticing a pattern? Of course the other reason for the desire for an attack is an attempt to get Republicans and Democrats sitting down and working together with hopes that it’ll spill over the larger issues. However, using military actions as a political tool is just pathetic.
Finally, the US taking unilateral military action is setting a dangerous precedent. With Libya, we had international support. With Syria, England has already voted against it. Russia has been adamant against it. The United Nations has said any action needs to be delayed until a thorough investigation is performed. If we act now, how are we going to speak out against another country, such as Russia, doing the same thing in a situation that we do not support? There’s nothing at all to gain from us taking any action against Syria. We need to focus on the situation at home and drop this military industrial complex once and for all.