Opinion: Bombing Syria is an unnecessary, tactless instance of retaliation
Well, here we are again. Once more we’ve subjected ourselves to the atrocities of war and further tested man’s unquenchable thirst for bloodshed. For many of us, it is impossible to remember a time when the United States was not fighting in the Middle East.
Explaining the Middle East’s volatile situation is a long, complicated story. But the west created the region’s turbulence, and it’s become one of the main theaters of contest between the United States and the Russian Federation. That’s where we are in Syria ― wondering how to deal with one dictator in President Bashar al-Assad while maintaining something resembling friendly relations with another in Vladimir Putin, the puppeteer pulling Syria’s strings.
President Donald Trump ordered a series of missile strikes against Syrian chemical development facilities in response to the Assad government’s use of chemical weapons against its own citizens. America’s involvement is based on a flawed national ideology which elevates the U.S. as a global police force, a role no one elected us to and no one wants us to have. The failings or abuses of one government doesn’t fall under the authority of another.
The use of internationally outlawed chemical weapons against innocent people cannot be left unanswered. But human civilization has reached the point where even violent despots must be met with hardline diplomacy. Violence must not beget more violence, and America must lead by example.
We’re getting involved in Syria’s mess not because we feel some misplaced parental urge to defend the innocent from the wicked, but because our government has, for too long, bowed before the will of the billionaire oil barons who lust the region’s heavy underground lakes of black gold. The American government is ready and willing to see red, white and blue blood stain the deserts of Persia so long as they can line their pockets in the process.
The Trump administration is merely pretending to give a damn about the oppressed masses in Syria. Perhaps if Trump hadn’t campaigned on a platform thoroughly against any measure that could’ve potentially saved innocent lives. Perhaps if Trump hadn’t closed our one window of hope by barring refugees fleeing an apocalyptic civil war based off nothing more than their religion. Maybe then we could believe the Good Samaritan act.
If Trump truly wanted to improve the situation in Syria, he would stop trying to emulate and appease Tsar Putin. The monster in the Kremlin is a narcissistic tyrant with designs on destabilizing the West and fulfilling a ridiculous dream of restoring the pre-Great War Russian Empire. But Putin’s hold on power is unstable, leaving him vulnerable to major international sanctions. Any pain felt by Russia will be felt even more by their client states, which Syria is. All Trump has done was stomp his feet and demand something go boom to fix it, which accomplishes nothing. If that’s all we wanted from a President we could have just as well elected Michael Bay.
If the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different outcome, then the United States was lost to delusions long before Trump. Yet with each passing day, this government seems to push the boundaries of commons sense to their utmost limits while denying the world of a stable democratic power to lead them. A leader is one who knows that it doesn’t require a broadsword to change the world, and one who isn’t so quick to use a hammer when a file tool would better perform the task. Behold America, there is no more blunt a tool than Donald J. Trump.