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Iran fighting for Assad in Syria. US need not get involved

warpigs

Lordy, the war pigs in the US are just, uh, dying to get involved in the Syria civil war. But it won’t be their kids who die, now will it?

The rebels by now are mostly jihadist. Arming them would be supremely stupid since they are not loyal to us and the weapons could end up anywhere. Further, “intervening” in Syria will mean dead Americans, probably lots of them. Regardless of who eventually ends up taking power (if anyone does) things will be unstable in Syria for years to come. Or are we just going to go charging into Syria with no concrete plan because we’re so darned Exceptional so what could possibly go wrong with that?

This is not our fight. Ever tried to break up a serious fight between two cats? Chances are the cats will stop fighting each other and attack you instead. In the case of Syria, none of the cats trust or like us and it really does look like the warring sides will have to beat each other bloody for the foreseeable future.

The two-year-old Syrian conflict has become a regional war and a de facto U.S. proxy fight with Iran.

“This is an important thing to note: the direct implication of foreigners fighting on Syrian soil now for the regime,” the official said.

Top 10 warning signs of ‘liberal imperialism’

#2: You tend to argue that the United States is morally obligated to “do something” rather than just stay out of nasty internecine quarrels in faraway lands. In the global classroom that is our digitized current world, you believe that being a bystander — even thousands of miles away — is as bad as being the bully. So you hardly ever find yourself saying that “we should sit this one out.”

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  • DJ

    It bothers me that the idea of this post is to sit back and let people kill each other – or rather, let a handful of combatants kill tens of thousands of civilians. I’m not advocating military involvement, but rather “conflict resolution” involvement – and our government may not be the best tool for that job, since it seems to exacerbate conflict wherever it goes.

    I’ve been listening to NPR commentators asking why the U.S. Government doesn’t have more people on the ground in Syria. My question is, why don’t peacemaking organizations have more people on the ground? (Or am I missing something?) We had them in Iraq – and some of them died for their work (think Christian Peacemakers, who were Mennonites espousing peace, not Christianity). In Sri Lanka, I was one of those folks on the ground. Our group took a conflict that no one seemed to understand, made sense of it, and eventually helped bring about a four-year cease-fire, the longest in that thirty-year war. Yes, conflicts CAN be intervened in and resolved – but generally not with guns.

    We as human beings are obligated to prevent the killing of innocents where we can. Failing to do so is immoral. Yet it is equally immoral to rely on our government as a surrogate for our own efforts. It is a poor substitute, with goals that are often not in the interest of real peace.

    If we sent troops to Syria, many of my neighbors would have sons and daughters who be on the front line. They serve in Afghanistan and Iraq. Too often, the local flags fly at half mast because one of them has been killed.

    I often wonder why those who seek peace seem to be less willing to take time from their careers, and even risk their lives, than the kids where I live. Granted, there is less organizational and training support – and peace work doesn’t pay as well in monetary terms. It can be equally risky, and (as I can attest) the chance of later nightmares is nearly as high. But if we believe that peace is possible (and I do), we must realize that it takes work to accomplish. That work can’t be accomplished without people, volunteers, as committed to their objective as soldiers are to theirs.

    • I don’t think the outside powers involved here care much about what happens to the people of Syria, most of whom probably just want to get on with what once was their lives. Some urban dwellers in Syria are now living in caves, for God’s sake. And the economy is a shambles.

      Would a peacemaking group even be safe in Syria now? In Sri Lanka the sides were obvious and clear. There were also safe areas where combat wasn’t happening. I’m not sure if any of that exists in Syria.Who would they talk to? Their are dozens of militias, rebel groups, and by now, probably war lords. Who would protect you?

      I’m not comfortable with letting innocents die either. But the even the most seasoned UN peacekeeping missions have had no luck.

      • DJ

        Those effectively making peace don’t work in safe zones. I’m thinking about (Brit) William Knox of Quaker Peace & Service (and later Thuruptiya), who worked in the conflict zones of Sri Lanka during the worst of the war, getting to know the people involved. He was under fire more than once. Or (Indian) M. Araham who traveled into the rebel areas of Nagaland to meet and talk with the rebels there. Or (American) Sharif Abdullah, who defied the GOSL and traveled to Jaffna to meet with the LTTE leadership to talk peace. These are men I knew personally. But we should never forget (American) Tom Fox who was killed in Iraq while working among Iraqi civilians.

        I’m not in their league, but I have to say that the most effective work I did was on the ground, some of it in dangerous places where we didn’t know who to trust. And BTW, the U.N. folks are dedicated, but they work at the top, and that’s not enough. The Norwegians never would have gotten their 2002 CFA in Sri Lanka without a lot of mostly-unseen grassroots work at the bottom and middle.

        “Forward he cried from the rear, and the front rank died.”

        War is not safe. Our soldiers know that – when will our peacemakers learn that you can’t make peace from the rear? Peace is hard work, and it is dangerous. But it is also a moral imperative.

        Fortunately, a quick internet search reveals that in addition to local peaceworkers, the Mennonites are now working in Syria. There ARE boots on the ground for peace – just not nearly enough yet. If I was inclined to go there, I’d start with the Mennonites – having worked alongside the Quakers, I’ll bet the MCC folks know the parties and the problems better than the CIA.

        • One big problem is none of the players, internal or external, really want peace. Yet.

          Hats off to the Mennonites. I wouldn’t know where to start there. The most I can do here is urge we don’t arm the rebels or get directly involved in what could become a regional war.

          • DJ

            They know where to start because they’ve done it before. I could probably make an educated guess, too, because my experience taught me how. But I’m tired and have a family now, so I won’t be going back to the front lines (unless and until they come to me). The best I can do is teach what I learned.

  • I don’t think the outside powers involved here care much about what happens to the people of Syria, most of whom probably just want to get on with what once was their lives. Some urban dwellers in Syria are now living in caves, for God’s sake. And the economy is a shambles.

    Would a peacemaking group even be safe in Syria now? In Sri Lanka the sides were obvious and clear. There were also safe areas where combat wasn’t happening. I’m not sure if any of that exists in Syria.Who would they talk to? Their are dozens of militias, rebel groups, and by now, probably war lords. Who would protect you?

    I’m not comfortable with letting innocents die either. But the even the most seasoned UN peacekeeping missions have had no luck.

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