Wednesday, September 4, 2013

On Attacking Syria

The US is about to attack Syria.

The impending attack is because the we believe the Syrian government used chemical weapons on its own people.  Per the BBC, the US has put the death toll on this chemical weapon attack at 1,429 including 426 children.  Per the same article, France only attributes 529 deaths to the same attack.  The US and France are both highly certain that this use of chemical weapons was conducted by the Syrian Army and any use of Syria’s vast reserves of such weapons must be approved by President Assad.

President Obama had warned Syria about using such weapons.  He told them if they crossed this line, this red line,  there would be severe consequences.  Now that such an attack has come and we are highly certain that Assad was behind it, we are cornered into backing up the red line threat our President made.  At first England and France were with us, but as support among their parliaments and people waned, they backed away.  The issue was brought up at the United Nations Security Council but Russia vetoed any action being taken.  So, if their is to be any military action, we stand alone.  

Today, September 4, both President Obama and Secretary of State Kerry have been saying there was no Obama or US “red line.”  It was a global “red line.”  Two smart fellows named David, one a cousin and another a friend, are apparently as bewildered as I am.  They  posted the following on Facebook.
So, let me get this straight. We're going to go to war to defend the credibility of a comment Obama won't take responsibility for.

HIGH CONFIDENCE VS CERTAINTY: Is anyone else bothered by this Admin's very specific talking point that it has evidence which shows with "high confidence" (vs certainty) that Assad used chemical weapons? If it has certainty, I have no doubt that they would wouhave said so.

OBAMA MOMENTS AGO IN SWEDEN: "I didn't set a red line, the world set a red line." Huh? Would you like me to roll the tape/video on your previous comments?

So launching missiles isn't going to war, huh? Half pregnant comes to mind…

I never realized how cool wars could be until Obama started them. (this was on a shared photo).

That awkward moment when a Nobel Peace Prize winner wants to bomb people that other world leaders want no part of. (this was also on a shared photo).
If the US attacks Syria, it will not be in accordance with the popular view.  A Washington Post-ABC News poll conducted a few days before this blog posting showed that 58% of Americans are opposed to any military action, 38% are in favor of an attack, and about 3% are undecided.  This is different than a poll taken in December, the same question was raised.  Then the results were flip-flopped and about he same majority supported an attack.  At the time of that poll, there had not been a chemical attack, it was purely hypothetical.

Why are we doing this?  Why are we doing it when no other country is supporting participating?  What do we expect to gain from this attack?  Will anything change if we attack?  Will weakening the current regime lead to the success of the rebels?  Would a new government be any friendlier to us?  There are no good reasons that I can fathom for this.  Have we learned nothing from our recent, ineffective (in my view) wars in Afghanistan and Iraq?  The vague answers to such questions bothers me a bit.

We have to stop being the policemen of the world.  We have to focus more on solving the many issues we have in this country in terms of commerce, jobs, deficits, and education.  I believe those battles are much more winnable than any foray in the Mideast.

There are articles, not so much in the mainstream, that suggest the rebels used chemical weapons making it look like it was the Syrian Army to provoke us to do exactly what we are planning to do.  Some of these articles also go so far as to say Saudi Arabia is behind it.  Maybe there are deals and alliances happening behind closed doors that we will never be privy too.

As of September 1, The Huffington Post reported that over 110,000 people have died since the beginning of the conflict in March of 2011.  Of that number, over 40,000 are civilians of which 4,000 are women and 5,800 are children.  The remainder are combatants on both sides with the Syrian Army and pro-government militia being the largest part.

This is an abhorrent civil war.  Both sides are killing civilian men, women, and children.  Yet it wasn’t until chemical weapons were used that we think about intervening.  What makes children killed by chemical weapons worse than children killed by bullets and artillary?  This bothers me a bit.  

Rioting in Egypt a few weeks ago resulted in the burning and looting of churches and the killing of Christians.  Yet, barely a peep out of our government and certainly no line of any kind drawn nor any warnings to anyone.  This bothers me more than a bit.

There is something I learned in managing logistics suppliers.  When things seem bewildering and illogical.  There are things happening behind the scenes.  In logistics, the happenings are usually payments to individuals to get and retain the business.  I am not saying payoffs and bribes are involved in this case, but it would not surprise me to learn that discussions with both Saudi Arabia and Israel have influenced this desire to bomb Syria.  

Me? I would not get involved in Syria.   I would put whatever funds it is going to cost to attack them and put it towards solving a domestic issue.  Helping to transform Detroit would be an excellent use of those funds.


  1. Thank you Levon Avdoyan for this:

    The dealings are apparently not really behind the scenes.

  2. I am in full agreement with you (and especially those two smart David fellows!). Military action to (in great part, I believe) establish the credibility of our Narcissist in Chief for having made his "red line" comment is no reason at all for taking said action. Additionally, does anyone really believe that, given that Assad knows we'll never commit "boots on the ground," this will serve as a deterrent to him wrt the further use of these abhorrent weapons? He'll do ANYTHING to stay in power or die trying. Last, and perhaps most telling, even the Arab League is against our using military force!!! WT?!

  3. From Mike Adajian (facebook)

    This Syria war is a tough bastard of a problem. 110,000 deaths is an abomination.

    Sometimes there are no easy answers. Too often there are no answers at all. ...See More

    Syria: life in the rebel strongholds

  4. I don't want the USA to get involve with Syria. It will be a big mistake for the USA. It is an abomination of 110,000 deaths, and we are a country that wants to be remembered as the hero, a humanitarian country, but I don't want American blood shed.