Welcome to DU! The truly grassroots left-of-center political community where regular people, not algorithms, drive the discussions and set the standards. Join the community: Create a free account Support DU (and get rid of ads!): Become a Star Member

Jeff In Milwaukee

Jeff In Milwaukee's Journal
Jeff In Milwaukee's Journal
September 5, 2013

Pissing on a gasoline fire and other really bad ideas...

Syria needs more war in the same way that the Sahara Desert needs more sand. If the past decade in Iraq and Afghanistan has taught us anything at all, it’s that guns and bombs are not the solution to political and societal problems. Syria has a serious political and societal problem, and the introduction of chemical weapons has been a less-than-helpful development. But the introduction of Tomahawk cruise missiles is not going to be any better.

I get it. As decent human beings, we want Bashar Al-Assad to stop gassing his own citizens, and as fretful Americans, we don’t want to see those same weapons falling into the hands of a successful insurgency, particularly when it appears that al-Queda is among the combatants. If we bomb Assad, it’s likely he’ll attack Israel just to upset the apple cart. If we don’t bomb Assad, his chemical weapons are potentially available to people who destroyed the World Trade Center.

Damned if you do and damned if you don’t?

Here’s an idea. Stay the hell out of the conflict. And instead of spending billions on blowing people up, let’s try spending billions on the vast number of refugees this civil war has created. The United Nations estimates that Syria is hemorrhaging 5,000 citizens a day who are fleeing the conflict. Nearly two million so far. Half of them children.

If we want to send a message to the Arab World about our intentions, how about we do that by making sure that the weakest and most vulnerable among them are adequately fed and housed? How about we do that by engaging the Arab League, the Organization for Islamic Cooperation, Hezbollah and Russia (yes, Russia) to apply some leverage on Assad. It’s a crazy idea, I know, but maybe just for once we should try waging peace with the same courage and resolve we bring to waging war.

I’m just spit-balling here. I could be wrong. But here’s the thing. My son was eighteen months old when we invaded Afghanistan. He’ll be sixteen years old next year. I’d really like it if at least a small portion of his childhood was not spent with American troops dying overseas.

That’s not too much to ask.

Profile Information

Gender: Do not display
Hometown: Milwaukee, WI
Home country: USA
Member since: Mon Apr 25, 2005, 07:42 PM
Number of posts: 13,992

Journal Entries

Latest Discussions»Jeff In Milwaukee's Journal