In the past few weeks, all major news networks have been preoccupied with the mind-numbing question: Should the U.S. take military action against the Syrian government for their use of chemical warfare on their own civilians?
Upon discovering that Syria has an arsenal of chemical weapons, President Obama was rather quick in his plan to engage in a limited air strike against the Syrian regime of Bashir al-Assad.
Before our president could approach the American public with this idea, Russia – Syria’s most important ally – had vetoed any military intervention from the United Nations, therefore disabling them from any swift action.
The United Nations Security Council is now trying to negotiate a draft resolution, forcing Syria to identify all chemical weapons under government control. Inevitably, there is still conflict.
Britain, France and the United States are stern in their positions. In the negotiations, military action will only be used if Syria does not comply, but Russia does not seem so keen to accept this demand.
Meanwhile, the Syrian civil war has resumed their internal genocide, with fatalities estimating to 100,000 civilians in the past two years. Judging from the rising tension among the regions now, this doesn’t seem to be coming to an end any time soon.
Opposition of U.S. military intervention is within good reason despite the instances that Assad must be punished for their use of chemical weapons. President Obama, under the guise of humanitarian efforts, seeks to be taken seriously and knows that no action will be worse than any action.
Although he has not stated any plans to dissemble Assad’s regime, he does want to make an example of a dictator that decides to violate international war. However, at what costs?
Unless the Obama administration wishes to face the same criticism as the Bush administration, the U.S. must obtain approval from the UN Security Council. In any event that Syria might violate the negotiations, we must ponder what Obama’s next move would be. Revive the prospects of “limited” air strikes? Direct participation from the United States would increase chances of direct conflict with Russia, Iran and Hezebollah.
Our military intervention will not miraculously destroy this malicious regime. If anything, we will be participating in the devastation of innocent victims, since many of the Assad regime’s missile batteries are in heavily populated districts.
A formidable plan will not only enforce peace and constructiveness, and would be for the United States, France and England to dispel the idea that military action will relieve the suffering of Syrians, if that is our true agenda.
As TheNation.com suggests, the United States should join Russia to renew the Geneva negotiations, since we share the mutual interest in preventing Syria’s disintegration from spreading throughout the region.
It may not be easy, but with mutual cooperation, we might be able to halt the flow of arms strengthening the Syrian army in order to contain the conflict. The most we can hope for is a cease-fire.
We should learn from history that meaningless bickering is a waste of time. Russia and the U.S. may not share the same social and political values but our efforts should be focused on a humanitarian agenda.
The civil war has left 1.9 million refugees without a home, forcing them to flee across the country’s borders. Our international obligation is not to play hero at every blast of a gun, sending air missiles to the rescue.
President Obama may need to learn from his predecessors that military conflicts have serious repercussions in any opportunity at global peace.