This post by NPR today makes the argument why the US should allow Assad to stay in power in Syria. It’s an interesting argument, indicating that if his regime was to fall, Syria could be put into more chaos, resulting in his chemical weapons falling into the hands of people who shouldn’t have them. I still don’t know how I feel about the issue, but it’s a persuasive argument.
Today, Obama announced that he would try to take the diplomatic route on stopping Syria from using chemical weapons , an action proposed by Russia a few days ago. I absolutely commend the president on his attempts to resolve the issues in Syria diplomatically, however, I’m not sure if it will be sufficient to solve the problem. Who’s to say whether the regime will give up its chemical weapons, or if they give up some of them, who’s the say they won’t give up all of them? While getting rid of Syria’s chemical weapons is certainly a good thing, why would that stop the violence occurring there on a daily basis? It seems to simply be a band-aid solution to an underlying problem.
I honestly don’t know if I think we should intervene in Syria or not. On the one hand, I think that the violence happening there needs to be stopped before it erupts into something that destabilizes the entire Middle East, but on the other, I think about our past failed interventions in the Middle East which only resulted in worse violence and postponing problems. I also don’t know if we should support the regime or the rebels. Hell, I don’t think we even have a clear idea of who has the chemical weapons and who used them. Certain sources say the rebels have them, and other sources say the regime in Syria have and used them. It’s a massive mess with no clear solution.
And I fear that we are running out of time to make a decision. Obviously the daily killings and the current death toll is inexcusable, but I fear that Syrian instability would spill over to cause instability in the greater Middle East. If so, tensions between Iran and Israel may ratchet up to the point of no return. Terrorist organizations may get their hands on nuclear weapons and fire them against other nations. Oil prices may fluctuate to create shocks in the global economy.
I don’t know what we should do, or if we should even do anything. But I think that the world needs to figure out how to deal with the situation in Syria as soon as possible.