The Moore American

Local News

July 31, 2013

Okla. opposes war in Syria

MOORE — At an Oklahoma State Capitol rally, four speakers on the left and four speakers on the right addressed 200 participants gathered together in near 100-degree heat. The message was, “President Obama must hear from all of us that Syria is a powder-keg that the U.S. must not become militarily embroiled in. Syria is not our war.”

We must learn from the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts. Military action can become a swamp from which it is nearly impossible to disengage. We have invested trillions of dollars and thousands of lives of our troops. Tens of thousands are wounded and still seeking medical or psychological care. Congress and “we the people” must prevent avoidable military excursions. 

The Assad government is ruthless and has killed thousands of civilians, but the Obama administration said poison gas used by government forces would be the “red line” for action. A United Nations finding published by Reuters showed that poison gas was used by rebel forces, not government forces, so that line has yet to be crossed.

Syria’s civil war is complex. It’s a sectarian war, meaning that religion is an issue, in a volatile region of the world. The conflict could spread beyond Syria’s borders to become a regional war. U.S. involvement pulls us into a proxy war with Russia and Iran, who are supporting the Assad government.

President Barack Obama has thus far avoided getting the U.S. into the Syrian mess, but he is under pressure from the hawks who push for military action and label presidents who avoid it as weak.

Former National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski has come out in a Time Magazine editorial stating that intervention will make the Syrian conflict worse. Joshua Landis, an acknowledged expert on Syria and director of the Center for Middle East Studies at the University of Oklahoma, has published articles stating that intervention by the U.S. risks war on par with Iraq and Afghanistan.

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