1. This is an act of war. We are attacking a sovereign nation with implements of war. It is like the Japanese attacking Pearl Harbor, or the Germans invading Poland, or our previous invasions of Vietnam, Panama, Grenada, Iraq, and Afghanistan. Whatever reason or justification is given it remains an attack on a nation that has not attacked us.
2. The ostensible reason for us now attacking is not that the use of poison gas by Assad is something that is so unique it calls for us to go to war is false. When Iran was our enemy, Saddam Hussein used it against the Iranians and we shrugged.
3. When one nation decides to attack another, the ultimate result depends upon the will of both nations and their allies. When the president speaks of a limited attack, he is only telling what we will do in the first instance. He has no way of controlling the response to our attack. That response, if any, will require us to respond back. That’s how big wars start.
4. This is an unprecedented action by the United States. We are not operating to defend ourselves or with the approval of the UN or pursuant to a treaty or to prevent a an imminent disaster (Libya). It is one step beyond all previous reasons to go to war. Perhaps some day it will be used as a precedent for attacking a country where a friendly dictator is ousted by people we consider hostile.
Walter Dellinger mentioned in the above article noted the planned attack is not: “covered by any of the previous precedents for the unilateral use of executive power. That doesn’t mean it couldn’t become another precedent, but when the president is going beyond where any previous president has gone, it seems appropriate to determine whether Congress concurs.”
5. Pause and think of this: at no time in our history have we ever gone to war for something like this. Then juxtapose that with the idea the president won the Nobel Peace Prize. Then ask yourself have we become way too much of a militaristic state when we invent new reasons for going to war. Then ask what is it about this situation that requires this extraordinary and unprecedented action.
6. Israel has a large role in what we plan to do. Our Secretary of War John Kerry threw in the Israeli card to get the backing of this unprecedented attack. Haaretz reported that AIPAC the highly influential American-Israel lobby group, has deployed hundreds of lobbyists to push for a Syrian attack. A strong Israel backer sets out many reasons why this is a mistake. It seems clear that we will be going to war in large part because that is what Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel wishes.
7. It is no secret that Secretary of War John Kerry ardently desires that he bring about an Israeli/Palestinian peace agreement. This elusive goal has eluded many for decades. Kerry is intent on working hard for Israel to bring this about. He stated that: “I think it’s important that the Israeli people and the government see that coming to the talks, taking the risk of moving toward peace is worthwhile.” This attack on Syria must be understood in light of Kerry’s goal where he is risking America’s wealth and lives to try to have it as his legacy that he brought about that peace agreement. He recognized, he must cave in to Israeli wishes to bring it about.
8. Secretary of War Kerry’s view of attacking another nation seems strangely unrelated to reality. He said we will attack “without engaging in troops on the ground or any other prolonged kind of effort in a very limited, very targeted, very short-term effort that degrades his capacity to deliver chemical weapons without assuming responsibility for Syria’s civil war, . . . That is exactly what we are talking about doing — unbelievably small, limited kind of effort.” If he is of the mind that going to war with another nation with chemical weapons is an unbelievably small matter he is either deluding himself or trying to delude the Americans.
9. The pro-Israel magazine Commentary had an interesting article in July taking about how America is trying to get Israel involved in fighting Syria. It failed. Syria did not fall for the bait. The article noted that if we started an: “Israeli-Syrian war [it]would force Israel to destroy Assad’s air force, thereby greatly increasing the chances of a rebel victory.” That is exactly what we plan to do in this strike. Having failed to get Israel involved because neither party wanted go at each other, we now have to do our own dirty work to help the rebels.
10. The bottom line is we are entering into an unprecedented war in which many will die to prolong a civil war in order to get a peace agreement between two people who will never be at peace.