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Syria - it's not our problem.

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  • Syria - it's not our problem.

    So it appears that Syria might have crossed President Obama's "red line" by using chemical weapons in it's civil war.

    I have to ask, who cares? We have no friends there. Assad is a dick(tator), and the rebels are largely Islamist assholes. So why should we give a crap about it?

  • #2
    Re: Syria - it's not our problem.

    Originally posted by MattInFla View Post
    So it appears that Syria might have crossed President Obama's "red line" by using chemical weapons in it's civil war.

    I have to ask, who cares? We have no friends there. Assad is a dick(tator), and the rebels are largely Islamist assholes. So why should we give a crap about it?
    I'm not sure that we know much of anything about most of the rebels. I'm sure some are islamist assholes, but there's probably a substantial number of people who've simply had enough of Assad's dick-tatorship.

    Constitutionally we shouldn't intervene unless NATO or one of our other Alliances requires it by treaty.

    Of course the UN (and the countries that offer troops in support of it) could intervene, assuming that the UN can even agree that the leaders of a country gassing their own citizenry is not allowed. China and Russia might veto that concept depending on the day of the week.

    מה מכילות החדשות?


    • #3
      Re: Syria - it's not our problem.

      Originally posted by MattInFla View Post
      So it appears that Syria might have crossed President Obama's "red line" by using chemical weapons in it's civil war.

      I have to ask, who cares? We have no friends there. Assad is a dick(tator), and the rebels are largely Islamist assholes. So why should we give a crap about it?
      There's enormous similarities with present-day Syria, and the 1950s Hungarian Revolution. Poland rebelled somewhat against the Soviet Union, and was granted concessions, so Hungary similarly started a rebellion. Radio Free Europe indicated to the Hungarian people that the west would support their uprising; however there were several problems with that, the two most notable being geography (to send ground forces into Hungary would mean crossing into several Soviet nations first), and the Suez crisis occurred at the same time.

      The parallels I draw with Poland/Hungary are a couple of years ago the west supported Libya's rebellion, much like we supported Poland's rebellion. The people of Syria were led to believe - rightly or wrongly - that we would support them (and I think based on what occurred in Libya, the Syrian people had a reasonable assumption of western involvement), and we didn't (like Hungary), because it would undoubtedly lead to a direct confrontation with Iran.

      The question comes back: why was the west prepared to militarily intervene in Libya and not Syria? It's the same argument as why was the west prepared to invade Iraq to stop a madman getting weapons of mass destruction, but not North Korea? The foreign policy of the "west" is massively contradictory.

      Should the west intervene in Syria? Well, any direct involvement would bring Iran (and possibly China) into the conflict, so perhaps a covert operation to either smuggle weapons or resources in; or at the very least further UN or NATO involvement with strict, military enforced sanctions.
      Last edited by noahath; 04-26-2013, 03:59 PM. Reason: correcting typos

      מה מכילות החדשות?


      • #4
        Re: Syria - it's not our problem.

        Why intervene in Libya and not Syria?
        How interesting was Russia in Libya (not so much) and Syria (a lot more).
        Isn't Russia propping up the regime (arms sales), didn't Russia cast some Syria supportive, otherwise blocking votes in the UN security consul?

        Just going off of memory here.

        Kudos to MattInFa for an excellent question to ponder.

        מה מכילות החדשות?


        • #5
          Re: Syria - it's not our problem.

          It's an excellent question. I suppose it's a good thing McCain isn't in power then eh? You should be thankful your current president wants prove beyond a reasonable doubt that a red line was crossed before sending anyone in. That being said I think a limited Libya type coalition and campagin is warranted here. Something to give the rebels a hand in overthrowing Assad. It's just the humane thing to do.

          מה מכילות החדשות?


          • #6
            Re: Syria - it's not our problem.

            Originally posted by Danny View Post
            It's an excellent question. I suppose it's a good thing McCain isn't in power then eh?
            Pointless partisan cheap shot.

            Originally posted by Danny View Post
            You should be thankful your current president wants prove beyond a reasonable doubt that a red line was crossed before sending anyone in.
            If I'm not mistaken, a number of people have come to the conclusion that the regime has in fact has already used chemical weapons.

            Syria Likely Used Chemical Weapons, U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel Says

            Syrian government using chemical weapons against its own people crosses a red line for Britain to do more, David Cameron warns | Mail Online
            How solid is Israel

            Opinion: Obama must act on Syria chemical weapons - CNN.com

            They might be right, or they may be wrong. I'm thinking they are right. Seems that Middle East dictatorships under threat from the general populace resort to chemical weapons to instill fear and control over that populace.

            Now let's see what Obama is going to do. My guess / bet is nothing, and walk away from his previous strong comments. The signs are already showing that this is the case.

            U.S.: Syrian gov't has used chemical weapons, but more definitive proof needed | CTV News

            Originally posted by Danny View Post
            That being said I think a limited Libya type coalition and campagin is warranted here. Something to give the rebels a hand in overthrowing Assad. It's just the humane thing to do.
            I guess we'll see if Obama's apology tour will net any results on this front. Wonder if the UK has any inclination to support, now that Obama's pissed them off as often as he has. My guess is that this isn't going to be a likely option. I'm betting that Obama's going to handle it just like he's been handling Iran and the Iranian uprising, which is not at all.

            מה מכילות החדשות?


            • #7
              Re: Syria - it's not our problem.

              Anybody who thinks we aren't supporting the Syrian rebels is crazy.

              As far as Libya, we supported the Libyan bunch because Europe wanted the help. They get a lot of oil from there.

              מה מכילות החדשות?


              • #8
                Re: Syria - it's not our problem.

                Originally posted by Danny View Post
                It's an excellent question. I suppose it's a good thing McCain isn't in power then eh? You should be thankful your current president wants prove beyond a reasonable doubt that a red line was crossed before sending anyone in. That being said I think a limited Libya type coalition and campagin is warranted here. Something to give the rebels a hand in overthrowing Assad. It's just the humane thing to do.
                Why? What do we gain? I guess you've already forgotten how Libya turned out?

                Syria is not our problem.

                מה מכילות החדשות?


                • #9
                  Re: Syria - it's not our problem.

                  Originally posted by eohrnberger View Post
                  Now let's see what Obama is going to do. My guess / bet is nothing, and walk away from his previous strong comments. The signs are already showing that this is the case.
                  I'd hope, given our recent history, we'd all want to be (reasonably) certain that Syria has crossed the "red line" before we risk getting ourselves bogged down in yet another war in the Middle East. I know I do. This is a tremendously serious decision and Obama should move slowly and cautiously. Syria offers a much more complicated challenge than Libya ever did.

                  That said... Obama has drawn that "red line" about chemical weapons. And if the intelligence proves to be reasonably conclusive, I agree that he is obligated to take serious action... and if he doesn't (again, assuming that the intelligence pans out), it will be a grievous mistake.

                  I guess we'll see if Obama's apology tour will net any results on this front. Wonder if the UK has any inclination to support, now that Obama's pissed them off as often as he has. My guess is that this isn't going to be a likely option. I'm betting that Obama's going to handle it just like he's been handling Iran and the Iranian uprising, which is not at all.
                  What do you think Obama should have done about Iran?

                  מה מכילות החדשות?


                  • #10
                    Re: Syria - it's not our problem.

                    Originally posted by MattInFla View Post
                    So it appears that Syria might have crossed President Obama's "red line" by using chemical weapons in it's civil war.

                    I have to ask, who cares? We have no friends there. Assad is a dick(tator), and the rebels are largely Islamist assholes. So why should we give a crap about it?
                    We probably should not get involved, but that is not the American way. I am not even really sure it matters that we are talking about a dictator vs. a probable radical Islamist government waiting to take over. We are way to drawn to conflict, anyone's conflict. Especially if there is an opprotunity to tell another nation how to exist. Besides, with Iraq over and Afganistan in retreat we will be bored soon.

                    מה מכילות החדשות?


                    • #11
                      Re: Syria - it's not our problem.

                      Originally posted by AdamKadmon View Post
                      I'd hope, given our recent history, we'd all want to be (reasonably) certain that Syria has crossed the "red line" before we risk getting ourselves bogged down in yet another war in the Middle East. I know I do. This is a tremendously serious decision and Obama should move slowly and cautiously. Syria offers a much more complicated challenge than Libya ever did.

                      That said... Obama has drawn that "red line" about chemical weapons. And if the intelligence proves to be reasonably conclusive, I agree that he is obligated to take serious action... and if he doesn't (again, assuming that the intelligence pans out), it will be a grievous mistake.



                      What do you think Obama should have done about Iran?
                      When Obama didn't respond, and then responded late to the Iranian populace up raising, that was a mistake. A mistake of hesitancy. As far as Iran is concerned, Obama got sunk right there, and the Mullahs figure they can out wait him, out bluff him, and perhaps even just shove him aside when the time comes, if it comes before the end of his administration. A weak response. Very weak.

                      In a larger context, the US has been weak against Iran even before Obama's administration began. We were wrapped up in Afghanistan and Iraq, and the Mullah's knew that we'd not want a fight with a 3rd country, so they pressed on their course. All this in spite of all the words, warnings, sanctions (that other countries violate under the table).

                      As soon as Iran has a bomb, or are right close to building one, Israel will swoop in with their fighters, bomb the shit out of the factory, and that'll be the end of that for now. We'll have to thank them for once again doing the dirty work. Problem is that it'll probably cause another 20 years of Arab / Muslim vs. Israel / Jewish conflict, as the Mullah's propagandize the evils of Jews and Israel to yet another uneducated generation of their youth, radicalizing them.

                      Originally posted by Sluggo View Post
                      We probably should not get involved, but that is not the American way. I am not even really sure it matters that we are talking about a dictator vs. a probable radical Islamist government waiting to take over. We are way to drawn to conflict, anyone's conflict. Especially if there is an opprotunity to tell another nation how to exist. Besides, with Iraq over and Afganistan in retreat we will be bored soon.
                      Yeah, the American way is to always butt into other's internal politics like some neighborhood busybody. We can send the Navy with earthquake or tsunami releif, but beyond that, we should let the trade and business flow and keep out of the internal politics. Not our country, so not our business.

                      Originally posted by MattInFla View Post
                      So it appears that Syria might have crossed President Obama's "red line" by using chemical weapons in it's civil war.

                      I have to ask, who cares? We have no friends there. Assad is a dick(tator), and the rebels are largely Islamist assholes. So why should we give a crap about it?
                      I agree. Let the turmoil boil over there, and let them kill each other off. It's one less problem that we've got deal with each other, just as long as they aren't shooting or bombing us.

                      מה מכילות החדשות?


                      • #12
                        Re: Syria - it's not our problem.

                        Originally posted by eohrnberger View Post
                        Yeah, the American way is to always butt into other's internal politics like some neighborhood busybody. We can send the Navy with earthquake or tsunami releif, but beyond that, we should let the trade and business flow and keep out of the internal politics. Not our country, so not our business.
                        I agree, just pointing out the likely conclusion of all of this. Like Libya and "Operation Odyssey Dawn." May have been a support role but still a conflict for us to get involved in, influencing the outcome. Dealing with North Korea or Iran has too many complications with respect to potential nukes, but Syria on the other hand might be further behind the curve in their development.

                        מה מכילות החדשות?


                        • #13
                          Re: Syria - it's not our problem.

                          Originally posted by eohrnberger View Post
                          When Obama didn't respond, and then responded late to the Iranian populace up raising, that was a mistake. A mistake of hesitancy. As far as Iran is concerned, Obama got sunk right there, and the Mullahs figure they can out wait him, out bluff him, and perhaps even just shove him aside when the time comes, if it comes before the end of his administration. A weak response. Very weak.
                          OK but what should Obama have done? Imposed even more sanctions? Threatened military force? Bombed Tehran?

                          In a larger context, the US has been weak against Iran even before Obama's administration began. We were wrapped up in Afghanistan and Iraq, and the Mullah's knew that we'd not want a fight with a 3rd country, so they pressed on their course. All this in spite of all the words, warnings, sanctions (that other countries violate under the table).
                          The problem, as I see it, is that we don't really have any good options. A bombing campaign will likely delay their nuclear program, but that's probably it. Computer viruses have been used, to some effect, but not enough, obviously. We sure as heck don't want to try to occupy Iran. (You think Iraq was tough? Child's play compared to Iran.)

                          As soon as Iran has a bomb, or are right close to building one, Israel will swoop in with their fighters, bomb the shit out of the factory, and that'll be the end of that for now. We'll have to thank them for once again doing the dirty work. Problem is that it'll probably cause another 20 years of Arab / Muslim vs. Israel / Jewish conflict, as the Mullah's propagandize the evils of Jews and Israel to yet another uneducated generation of their youth, radicalizing them.
                          Israel's conflict with the Muslim world will continue, regardless of whether they bomb Iraq's nuclear facilities... and please note the plural. Their program is scattered across the country and deep underground. This is a really tough nut to crack.
                          Last edited by CYDdharta; 04-27-2013, 10:30 PM. Reason: fixed quote box

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by MattInFla View Post
                            Why? What do we gain? I guess you've already forgotten how Libya turned out?

                            Syria is not our problem.
                            The only gain would be credibility ( which is needed after Iraq). You'd also gain satisfaction at saving lives.

                            Strategically, you might lose some ground since Assad was a known but stable entity. You will also loose money. A few billion at least.

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                            • #15
                              Re: Syria - it's not our problem.

                              Oh I dunno.

                              I think if we fired up the B2's, flattened a good piece of real estate of one of their cities with conventional weapons and fly back out sight unseen, and then came back with 'that was conventionals. You want to escalate to nuclear? Bring it on' or even better yet, not confirm nor deny anything.

                              They'd turn and run with their tails between their legs, and we'd have a commanding standing in the world again just because we dared to do it, at least for a little while. Might even bring Iran back in line. But maybe not. In the long run, it may even save the most lives that way, between the two pending conflicts.
                              Last edited by eohrnberger; 04-26-2013, 07:59 PM.

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