Sunday, September 08, 2013

The Stupidity of Attacking Syria

It seems like there are two main camps who oppose President Obama's proposed retaliatory strikes against the Assad regime. One is the liberal anti-war camp, which opposes any military action anywhere. The other is the isolationist camp, which wants the United States to butt out of other countries' affairs, diplomatically as well as militarily. But what about people like me who think the particular circumstances in Syria are what makes a strike inadvisable, rather than any general pacifist or anti-interventionist principles?

I don't see how a strike against Assad would make matters any better. The best scenario would be an end to the use of chemical weapons, but the regime would definitely continue massacring its own people with conventional weapons. At worst, what begins as a limited strike will spread the violence to neighboring Israel, Jordan and Turkey, in addition to Lebanon, where this has already started to happen. Assad may be replaced by Sunni Jihadists who would take over his chemical weapon stockpiles.

As an Israeli, what is most important to me is how any action in Syria would effect Israel. The Israeli government and the Israeli public, according to polls, back a strike on Syria. Again, I find myself in the minority. There is too great a danger that a strike would pull Israel into a war with Syria, without any clear objectives or any likely positive outcomes. 

When evil fights evil, stay the hell out of the way. Sure, innocent Syrians are caught in the middle, but we're not going to help them. If anything, we'll just be adding innocent Israelis, Jordanians, Turks and Lebanese to the list of people suffering from Assad's regime.

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