Since information came out that the Syrian regime has used chemical weapons in the country’s two year long civil war, more Americans now are shifting toward supporting some military action – not intervention – in Syria. According to the latest Quinnipiac poll, 49% of Americans support cruise missile and drone strikes in Syria while 38% are opposed. (It is ironic that drones are becoming favorable, but again, may be that is where they belong).
Ideally, 49% is not good enough, though it is much higher than before the revelations. Furthermore, there are issues of right and wrong, as well as moral responsibility in defense of the defenseless. This principle ought to have prevailed from the beginning and should prevail at all times.
The situation is now very complex and there are risks of more complications with any action or inaction. But there are certain realities: One, complications will continue to mount as the crisis continues. Two, inaction is not the equivalent of a solution. Three, all human beings are connected, in spite of national boundaries. The plight of one should be the plight of all.
One would wish that all rulers would emulate, say Japan’s or Italy’s example, but there are more despots in authority than there are genuine leaders interested in the welfare of their fellow citizens. When such despots show no concern for millions of innocent victims, then their authority is not worth the lives it costs – Bashar al Assad’s Russian friends should recognize this, but they don’t.
At this juncture, the Syrian regime must be stopped. It should not have taken this long.
Perhaps some are wondering: Why should the US be involved? The answer is really, that the whole human community should get involved. It is inappropriate to ask the innocent defenseless victims: “Why don’t you defend yourself?”
Finally, at this juncture, the credibility of Assad’s supporters has been so badly tarnished that they can no longer be part of a possible solution.