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America Says ‘No!' to a Beltway War

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Last week, hell came to the tiny Christian village of Maaloula where they still speak Aramaic, the language of Jesus.

"Rebels of the Free Syrian Army launched an assault aided by a suicide bomber from Jabhat al-Nusra," the al-Qaida-linked Islamic terrorist group, writes the Washington Post.

The AP picked up the story:

One resident said bearded rebels shouting "God is great!" attacked Christian homes and churches. "They shot and killed people. ... I saw three bodies lying in the middle of a street."

Maaloula is now a "ghost town." Christians left behind were told, "Either you convert to Islam or you will be beheaded."

"Where is President Obama?" wailed a refugee. And, indeed, where is Obama?

He is out lobbying Congress for authority to attack the Syrian army that defended Maaloula as John McCain beats the drums for a Senate resolution to have the U.S. military "change the momentum" of the war to the rebels who terrorized the convent nuns of Maaloula.

If we strike Syria and break its army, what happens to 2 million Syrian Christians? Does anyone care?

Do the Saudis who have signed on to Obama's war — but decline to fight — care? Conversion to Christianity is a capital offense in Riyadh.

Do the Turks, who look the other way as jihadist killers cross their frontier to set up al-Qaida sanctuaries in northern Syria, care?

Do the Israelis, who have instructed AIPAC to get Congress back in line behind a war Americans do not want to fight, care about those 100,000 dead Syrians and 400 gassed children?

Here is Alon Pinkas, Israel's former general consul in New York, giving Israel's view of the Syrian bloodletting: "Let them both bleed, hemorrhage to death. That's the strategic thinking here."

According to two polls reported this weekend by the Jerusalem Post, Israelis by 7-1 do not want Israel to go to war with Syria. But two-thirds of Israelis favor the United States going to war with Syria.

Peggy Noonan writes that the debate on war on Syria "looks like a fight between the country and Washington."

She nails it. The Washington Post, Wall Street Journal and Weekly Standard are all up for air strikes. In the think tanks of D.C., the corridor talk is all about "On to Teheran!"

But what of the soldiers who will fight the neocons' war? Major General Robert Scales speaks for our next generation of wounded warriors.

Our fighting men, Scales writes, "are tired of wannabe soldiers who remain enamored of bloodless machine warfare.

... Today's soldiers know war and resent civilian policymakers who want the military to fight a war that neither they nor their loved ones will experience firsthand."

Enthusiasm for war is likely higher at Cafe Milano in Georgetown than in the mess hall at Camp LeJeune.

Why is opposition to the war surging? Because the case for war is crumbling.

U.S. credibility is on the line, we are warned.

If we do not attack Syria to punish a violation of Obama's "red line," no one will believe us again. Our allies will no longer have confidence that America will come over and fight their next war for them.

Yet George Bush blustered in his "axis-of-evil" State of the Union that "the world's worst dictators" would not be allowed to get "the world's worst weapons."

And Kim Jong Il went out and tested an atom bomb and built an arsenal of nuclear weapons. And what did The Decider do? Nothing.

Did our alliances collapse because "W's" bluff was called?

Should Congress really authorize a war on Syria because Hillary Clinton and Obama said "Assad must go!" and Obama said his "red line" has been crossed?

Or should Congress used this vote as a teaching tool for Baby Boomer Bismarcks by declaring:

"We are not taking our country to war because you blundered in issuing ultimata you had no authority to issue. Rather than go to war, you should admit your mistake, as real leaders do, and take responsibility."

How many Syrians should we kill to restore the credibility of Barack Obama? How many Syrians should we kill to impress upon Iran how resolute we are? How many Syrians should we kill to reassure nervous allies that Uncle Sam will forever come fight their wars for them?

In America, before we put a man to death, we prove him guilty of murder "beyond a reasonable doubt."

Should we not set as high a standard of proof before we kill a thousand Syrians and plunge the United States into another war?

Where is the evidence Assad ordered a gas attack? German intelligence says it intercepted orders from Assad not to use gas. Congressmen coming out of secret briefings say the case is inconclusive.

The American people do not want war on Syria, and such a war makes no sense. Who is trying to stampede Congress into war on Syria, and then on Iran — and why? Therein lies the real question.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of "Suicide of a Superpower: Will America Survive to 2025?" To find out more about Patrick Buchanan and read features by other Creators writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators webpage at www.creators.com.

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Comments

3 Comments | Post Comment
Well said.
Comment: #1
Posted by: Peter Ungar
Mon Sep 9, 2013 5:40 PM
If the U.S. is acting in good faith, it will present its evidence to the Security Council and let the world judge. If the evidence is so overwhelming, Russia and China should not be able to stand up to that.

If the U.S. is selling a bunch of B.S. like it did when it ravaged Iraq, it will avoid shining a bright light on the evidence and keep focusing on how evil "chemical" weapons are, as if napalm, bombs, missiles, and other okie-dokie ways to kill are not.

I find it especially instructive that a "weapon of mass destruction" in domestic U.S. anti-terrorism law can even be as teeny as an improv-bomb made with a pressure cooker ala Boston Marathon. But Raytheon's hallowed Tomahawk Missile is not when it comes to turning masses of human flesh into hamburger in just about each swipe outside our borders. That's A-OK.

For me the most chilling and hair-raising thing about this whole controversy is the continuing legitimization and warm-fuzzynization of "conventional" war. It's fine to wipe out whole neighborhoods--just use the Raytheon-certified product to do it.

Oh---sorry Lockheed and all you other contenders---didn't mean diminish your fine contributions to comfy-style and totally acceptable obliteration of human life and any other life that happens to be where your fine product touches down.
Comment: #2
Posted by: Masako
Mon Sep 9, 2013 6:06 PM
The hypocrisy is unbearable because the historical facts show President Reagan supplied the Iraqi government with chemical weapons to attack Iran in the Iraq/Iran war and the International community knew of this and did nothing. Then George Bush, operating largely behind the scenes throughout the 1980s, initiated and supported much of the financing, intelligence, and military help that built Saddam's Iraq into the power it became. And Reagan/Bush administrations permitted—and frequently encouraged—the flow of money, agricultural credits, dual-use technology, chemicals, and weapons to Iraq. On 3 September 1992 the Conference on Disarmament submitted to the U.N. General Assembly its annual report, which contained the text of the Chemical Weapons Convention. The General Assembly approved the Convention on 30 November 1992. The convention augments the Geneva Protocol of 1925 for chemical weapons and includes extensive verification measures such as on-site inspections. It does not, however, cover biological weapons.

Knowing the back story, one must ask why the international community turned it's back when America used chemical warfare during the Vietnam era (Agent Orange). A thinking person will then ask why Syria, why now? Syria is a civil war. Civil wars are not uncommon in today's world. More questions...knowing Congress is against anything Obama is for and they have been biting at the bit to involve us in Syria and Obama refused, now he has agreed and left it to them to be the decision makers which no one can argue, they are now backing down on their gung ho war involvement. Is it because all that war talk was to make Obama seem weak, a poor leader? He's put the bs in their laps and now they're running around like headless chickens. Russia? They've played from the sidelines for years, as China has also done. Now they get to be the calm voice, the voice of reason.

I think it's politics as usual it ain't about chemical weapons, though no one can deny the horror of what occurred in Syria nor that Obama wouldn't love to take Syria out, but it seems it's more about bringing Russia and China into the fold and showing up those war mongering Republicans who have been blasting Obama for not involving us in Syria these past two years for the hypocritical waste of space they are.
Comment: #3
Posted by: morgan
Tue Sep 10, 2013 7:29 PM
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