Originally Posted by SCdac
From a humanitarian point of view and being head of probably the most powerful country, I think it was the right thing to say and message to send. My only beef is, much like this administrations history, it's empty talk. For instance, should have never said we were going to close G-Bay if it's never going to happen, etc. We have a president who's constantly in campaign-mode but really he's just a corporate puppet anyways. None the less, it's important to maintain some humanitarian standard, even if we're dragged into the mess. I'm sure it's not simple decision, and there's more politics, formalities, and bureaucratic BS than that.
It was so obvious we weren't going to do anything that we shouldn't have said it. It just made us look bad once they used chemical weapons and we didnt do anything. We should have taken the moral high ground and strongly condemned Assad and tried to shame russia into restraining him.
relevant Facts about syria:
-Russia and China oppose intervention into Syria and the both support assad (russia strongly supports assad), both countries sell weapons to assad and russia has a naval base located in syria. Any intervention into syria would bring us into conflict with the russians.
-Despite being ruled by the assad family, which is a brutal dictatorship, His father also cracked down on civilians in 1989 if I remember right. The assad family have pursued a relatively peaceful foreign policy. They are not like Saddam who at least invaded kuwait. The Assads are more concerned about maintaining their own control rather than expansion. This is important to American and our ally Israel. For all the talk, Assad hasnt done much to Israel or the US.
- Syria is over 60% Sunni Muslim. Assad is leading a coalition of Alawites, Shia and christians. Assad is an alawite and the shia and christian believe (probably correctly) that a Sunni take over would be bad for them. Almost assuredly the sunni government that replaces assad will be more fundamentalist and take a harder line against Israel. (This is also why removing Saddam was a bad Idea. we should have used him as a puppet against Iranian control of Iraq which will likely happen as most of Iraq is Shia like Iran and Saddam would have suppressed the Shia and kept his Sunni in charge and Iran out.)
Its just not in our interests to expend the effort necessary to remove Assad. And if we do the Sunni will just butcher the alawites in revenge for decades of oppression the shia and christians will be in trouble too.