Generally speaking, as I have expressed herein numerous times, I am opposed to the use of force to deal with international conflict. I have roundly criticized the use of drones, which has markedly increased since I last wrote. Also, I believe that sovereign nations that do things wrong to its citizenry are not a direct threat to another country’s national security. The recent Syrian attacks on civilians with the nerve agent Sarin are, indeed, heinous and should be condemned on humanitarian grounds at the very least. However, I do not assent to the claim that the act itself approaches a level that is dangerous to the United States. The explanation of the current Trump administration in launching fifty-nine Tomahawk missiles upon the Syrian airfield, from which the chemical attacks that killed one-hundred civilians emanated, was in reaction to the horrific acts by the government of Bashar al-Assad and a considerable threat to our national security. Both aspects of that explanation, in my estimation, do not rise to the level of military violence by one country against another country.
In 2013, former President Barack Obama was perched on the edge of his seat to launch a military strike against Syria for murdering innocent children and other civilians with chemical weapons. Obama was prepared to utilize the same missiles from vessels on the Mediterranean Sea. At the last minute, so to speak, he constrained himself from so doing because he was being criticized for proceeding unilaterally, i.e., without consulting with the U.N Security Council and our Allies. At the time, the atmosphere of racism in the U.S. Congress and the concomitant opposition to anything Obama sought by Republicans politicized their denial of Obama’s request allegedly on the grounds that Syria’s odious internal aggression did not constitute a threat to U.S. security.
Donald Trump did not want to wait on the majority Republican Congress to discuss the matter. Instead, he made up his mind to demonstrate his willingness to use the military to reprimand Assad. His decision went deeper than his expressed aversion to the sight of poisoned, incapacitated, and dying children. He has been trying desperately to change the narrative of all the concerns with his campaign and presidency concerning Russian, his low approval rating, and the dysfunction of his administration. Without a real plan for dealing with Syria and other countries in the Arab world, this operation could only address domestic issues rather than reveal any coherent foreign policy. But the media is adept at allowing Trump to change the focus of their coverage of the executive branch.
His criticism of Obama is intentionally deceptive, if it is not subtle or incisive. Clearly, he is not aware that his desires to distort Obama’s legacy must be based upon facts and not fictions or illusions. For were he about the truth, Trump would indicate how he had agreed with the decision not to bomb Syria back in 2013. Now that he’s in power, he wants to exercise it because he has demonstrated an obvious ignorance on how to govern.
We shall see what happens next. I forever long for the day when nations will seriously and sincerely try to settle differences peacefully. I don’t want to think it is a pipe dream, but as time marches on, I’m afraid, my idealistic faith is far from hopeful in waking up to such a day!