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Should the U.S. take military action against Syria? (Political Debate thread)

Discussion in 'Cafe toonzone' started by wonderfly, Sep 5, 2013.

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What action should the U.S. take in regards to the ongoing war in Syria?

  1. Full military action should be taken to remove the Assad regime.

    1 vote(s)
    6.3%
  2. Limited military action should be taken to destroy Assad's chemical weapons supply or to punish him

    2 vote(s)
    12.5%
  3. The U.S. should not get involved in either side of the conflict (because both sides are bad - it sui

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  4. The U.S. should not get involved in either side of the conflict as we're not the police of the world

    9 vote(s)
    56.3%
  5. The U.S. should not get involved in Syria because it'll just lead to another occupation/Iraq/Afganis

    1 vote(s)
    6.3%
  6. The U.S. should not get involved in Syria because it would escalate warfar throughout the Middle Eas

    3 vote(s)
    18.8%
  1. wonderfly

    wonderfly Shaking things up a bit
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    President Obama last Saturday declared that he would authorize military action against Syria...if Congress signed off on it. Thus setting up a national debate as to what role the U.S. (and the world) should play in the civil war going on in Syria.

    Well, if our political leaders are going to debate over it, I figured we should take a vote on it ourselves (see the poll above).

    Forum members are also free to chime in with their own thoughts on the subject, though standard Cafe rules for political threads apply here:

    The Rules:

    1) A discussion should most of the time not be more than "Post, Response, Reply to Response" as we don't need ongoing debates between two individuals that overtake the thread. Also, no picking apart someone else's post with a line by line reply over each point made in the other person's post. Pick one or two parts of the post to quote in your response, and that's it. We don't need a drawn out idealogical debate: You can believe what you want, and others can believe what they want, but realize that you probably won't be able to change their minds.

    2). Name calling or belittling other forum members will not be allowed. Do not denigrate supporters of one side in this debate. Do not denigrate a state that passes legislation you don't agree with. This is TROLLING or flamebait and may result in a warning or being banned. You can express your displeasure without resulting to name calling.

    3). Do not respond to flamebait or troll posts yourself!! Report the offending posts and let the moderators do their job! This thread will be CLOSED if repeat violations occur, and warnings will be issued for violations as warranted!

    4). About political cartoons- If you want to post more than one in the same post (or more than one on the same day), put them in spoiler tags. It makes it easier for people to navigate the thread.

    Comments?!?
     
  2. CartoonFridays

    CartoonFridays Promoted to detective.

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    Well, as Obama is leader of the free world, this must be stopped before innocent people get hurt.
    Still, we're all pretty bummed out from Iraq.
     
  3. defunctzombie

    defunctzombie 1992 not 2002
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    No, I don't think the US should do anything. We're not Team America. If they want to kill each other over there, fine. But as they don't pose a direct threat to American survival, we should not assume it's our duty to make them stop.
     
  4. Peter Paltridge

    Peter Paltridge Knows about rock people
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    Bush screwed everything up. Now we have videotaped evidence of a jerk in power, which is different from "maybe there's WMDs maybe there isn't", and nobody wants to do anything because they remember how Iraq dragged on and on. It only went that way because we made it so.

    Obama is dead set on not repeating that mistake, zipping in and zipping out, but it's gonna be difficult with no help. We might have had help if we'd known when to say "when" last time!
     
  5. Light Lucario

    Light Lucario Moderator
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    I don't think that we should get involved. What is happening in Syria is awful and should be stopped, but charging in there with military action isn't going to solve anything. From what I understand, it would just make things worse in Syria, as well as potentially make relationships with other countries and the U.S. more difficult. Besides that, America isn't the world police. Obama is the leader of the free world, but that's not the same thing, or at least I don't think that it is, and since we have no involvement with the conflict, it doesn't make sense to charge in with military action. Granted, I wouldn't be in favor of military action if we were more connected to the conflict due to not being in favor of war in general, but that's beside the point.

    If the government really wanted to help resolve the conflict in Syria, military action wouldn't be a choice, or at least not the first choice. There would be peace talks and discussions with the leaders involved to see what could be done from that angle. I don't know if they've already tried that or if that was brought up at all since I've only heard of the possibility of the U.S. taking military action against Syria, so I could have missed that, especially when I don't regularly watch or read news.
     
  6. GWOtaku

    GWOtaku Moderator
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    If the real intent is a limited campaign to cripple Assad's capacity to deliver these chemical weapons and genuinely hurt the regime, then maybe. But an open-ended involvement in a civil war where there may be no good side while we also refuse to say our goal is regime change - notwithstanding a declaration from the President two years ago that Assad needed to leave, absent any cohesive strategy to make this happen - would be a hypocritical and dithering response.

    The entire situation makes me sick. It has been mishandled from the start. This administration wouldn't even send gas masks to the opposition groups before. There is no telling how long the conflict will drag on now. Whether it's 5 countries or 50 backing it, firing a few missiles now won't be ending it much sooner.

    It's hard to argue with what Fareed Zakaria is saying about this.

    http://swampland.time.com/2013/09/04/on-syria-words-have-consequences/
     
  7. MDawg

    MDawg Nerfariously planning

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    This just isn't our problem. If the UN wants to do something, let them. We shouldn't be meddling in affairs when even if it helps them, we know the people we ally with would just betray us in the long run.
     
  8. Beefy

    Beefy It only hurts forever

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    The United States should not get involved.
    Does Syria export oil or anything of value to us? If the answer is no, then why should we care?

    Where is a UN or NATO coalition force to intervene in Syria? Why should the United States go in alone?
    How well is Iraq doing since we removed their leader from power?
     
  9. Convoy Rat

    Convoy Rat Member

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    Oh yeah, innocent children are getting gassed, whatever!
     
  10. wonderfly

    wonderfly Shaking things up a bit
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    [​IMG]

    "All that is required for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing". - Edmund Burke

    Having said that, I understand the "we shouldn't be the police of the world" mentality - and it's a belief found in both conservative and liberal circles. I understand we can't intervene in every single crisis in the world. But I keep going back to a quote found in a Spider-Man comic book: "With great power comes great responsibility". The U.S.A. does have great military power, and we should stand for the greater good in the world. And President Obama was the one who said that the use of chemical weapons would be a "red line" which Assad would be held accountable for crossing.

    I'm not saying the U.S. should go it alone, I'm not saying the President shouldn't get authorization from Congress. I'm just saying we should do SOMETHING, whether it's a full removal of Assad, or a limited campaign to cripple his chemical weapons...or SOMETHING.

    The more I think about it, the more I wish I had included an "undecided" category in the poll above. :(
     
  11. Light Lucario

    Light Lucario Moderator
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    That is beyond terrible. I don't think anyone is going to dismiss that. However, I don't see how taking military action is going to help with innocent people being hurt and killed. Throwing ourselves into the conflict sounds like it would do more harm than good. I agree that something should be done, but I don't think that military action would be the best way to go about it, especially when that could result in more innocent lives being lost in a growing stronger. A more peaceful approach would be better in my opinion.
     
  12. Wonderwall

    Wonderwall Moderator
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    Why were chemical weapons the "red line"? Was people getting their heads blown off by sniper fire or bombs ripping them apart not "red line" worthy enough? It probably doesn't matter which route the super powers go since the situation has degenerated to the point where a military strike, whether short or prolonged, will have any real effect. It seems minimal effort is always put in before deciding bombing is the way to go even though it never solves anything. How about an actual plan for once rather than platitudes and big talk that makes internet tough guys look legit.
     
  13. Beefy

    Beefy It only hurts forever

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    Over 100,000 people have already died, and the world just stood by and watched.
    Why does a few hundred more people getting gassed suddenly matter? Dead is dead.

    "With great power comes great responsibility." The United States isn't the only country with a military. China, Russia, Israel, France, the United Kingdom all have great power. I don't see any of them doing anything.
     
  14. defunctzombie

    defunctzombie 1992 not 2002
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    You are entitled to disagree with him, but you have to do so in a respectable manner. The rules at the top of the thread apply to everyone, regardless of their position.
     
  15. Ed Liu

    Ed Liu That's 'Cause I ATE IT!!!
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    This article is probably the best, short summary of what we know, what has been reported, and what the options are for Syria. The fact that the article is still quite long is telling in itself, but it's worth it if you want to understand the context of what's happened and what our options are. We have a choice of multiple options and all of them are bad. This has been true ever since the start of the Syria civil war 2 years ago and continues to be true now, so I don't think there's much (if anything) that Western powers could have done to prevent this or mitigate it anywhere along the line.

    About all I can really establish with certainty is that I have no idea how to deal with Syria. I don't think military intervention will be effective on its own, regardless of scale. It will do little to deter future similar actions, I don't think anybody on the ground will view it as anything more than Western meddling, and there are too many scenarios where direct military action makes things worse. If I had to suggest any action that would be productive, I'd start with engaging Iran and Russia: These are the two players on the stage now who are the major enablers of the Assad regime in Syria, and conventional wisdom is that it's their infusions that have propped up his regime and assisted in some of the major turnarounds against Syrian rebel forces. There will be no peace in Syria until both players can be convinced that continuing intervention is not in their best interests. Given the regime change in Iran, I'd seize on the chance now to open discussion about their nuclear program and use whatever leverage we can to get them to act differently in the region. Iran is central to stability in both Iraq and Syria, so if we want to achieve any kind of stability in either country, we'll need to engage them pretty directly. Russia is a bit of a tougher nut to crack, but even there I think we could probably craft enough incentives to get them to stop propping up the Assad regime.

    Beyond that, I think imposing a no-fly zone is workable and a reasonable, visible military reaction that can slightly reduce the amount of carnage Assad can visit on his people, while also pushing for International Court charges of war crimes for Pres. Assad and his senior leadership. I'm hesitant to suggest arming or training rebel groups, since that's a wildcard that may easily backfire on us, but at the same time I don't know that we have much choice considering that al Qaeda-aligned forces have no such issues (which has led to their growing influence among the anti-Assad factions).
     
  16. Kindness King

    Kindness King Active Member

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  17. Beefy

    Beefy It only hurts forever

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    That is a very good article.
    If the UN had provided aid to Syria during the drought, would there have even been a civil war?

    At the moment there is not enough evidence to prove that the Syrian government are the ones who used the gas.
    It certainly looks like the rebels and Israel have much more to gain from this gas attack than the Syrian government.

    If the United States does get involved, it's a no-win situation. Expect another mess like Iraq and Afghanistan.
     
  18. sun

    sun You stay, I go

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    Killing Innocent people??? Have we always gone in? Should We??

    Stalin killed 10 million..yes 10 million of his own people..We didn't go in there to stop him, in fact, he turned out to be our friend. In Cambodia, the bad guys killed about 2 million ..So we didn't go in there. I actually met someone who jumped out the back window of his place as the Army came in and killed his father. Horrific. But we didn't go in there. War is awful, beyond awful. You bomb someone, then they can bomb us. After all, it is war...not some game on a computer. .
    .....Assad can be delt with in many other ways besides us going in there. In Viet Nam and Iraq 2, our leaders thought things would be over with rather quickly, and they were wrong. Earlier, if you read the history, the leaders who started in World War One, thought it would be over with quickly. A few months and then over..5 or 6 million deaths later, and 4 years later.....they were wrong....In the 20s, that war was written as..."The War to End All Wars"...and everyone thought it couldn't happen again...World War Two..killed 20-50 million..I am against bombing someone, even limited bombing, cause it is war..not some game. Their soldiers will be killed so they will think they can kill our soldiers. Maybe if we kill innocents, Assad will think that he can kill innocents here. Anything is possible..anything. If you do not think so, then you need to read some more on war. To be avoiding at all costs ..and bombing them means will be starting a war with them. Even if it is ......."so called limited bombing.."
     
  19. Convoy Rat

    Convoy Rat Member

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    Excuse me gents, but could you please stop giving such strong opinions?

    It sounds to me like some of you are saying the rebels are the bad guys, and sorry my sophisticated companions, but I must disagree! I believe your words are being used to persuade the others, and I am saying this in a most respectful way, pish posh!
     
  20. Wonderwall

    Wonderwall Moderator
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    You want people to stop having opinions? Doesn't really make for the most lively of discussions then.

    If you actually do some reading, you'll know that these rebels aren't exactly The Rebel Alliance led by Luke Skywalker. There's a lot of shadiness about the guys behind the rebels that make them not really a better choice than the bad guys currently in power.
     

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