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Insurrection!

World Affairs, National Issues, National Security

As many of you know, I am in opposition to the international adventurism with which we as a country seem to be obsessed lately. I regret ever having supported the Iraq invasion. In retrospect--hindsight is always better than foresight--we accomplished very little at great cost. Saddam Hussein was a bad guy, but so what? The world is full of bad guys running countries. Are we going to depose every tinpot dictator we don't happen to like?

Saving innocent lives is a worthy endeavor, but oppression and mistreatment happens all over the world and has been going on since the beginning of recorded history. If enough residents of a country object to their government, they can depose it by coup, revolution, insurrection or, if available, the ballot box. Why our government thinks it is somehow our responsibility to right all the wrongs of the world defies logical explanation. We have expended many American lives and gobs of money in Iraq, Libya, Kosovo and Afghanistan, along with something very quietly going on in Uganda, with very little to show for it.

Besides the loss of life and resources, we are stressing our military, especially air power, to dangerously near the breaking point and reacting to this manufactured crisis with draconian budget cuts. The Air force was caught unawares by the Administration's precipitous campaign in Libya to depose another tin pot dictator who constituted no threat whatsoever to the United States. Now, our President and his Secretary of State seem to be desperately searching for an excuse to intervene militarily in Syria.

Let me engage in a bit of hypothetical hyperbole. Let's say that several domestic militias, most of whom hate the government, banded together and mounted an insurrection with the purpose of deposing the government of the United States. Let's say they were supported by a bunch of right-wing extremist organizations and even some disaffected citizenry. What would be the reaction of the government? Wouldn't we attack them, militarily if necessary--I believe the Posse Comitatus Act permits military intervention ion the event of insurrection--with whatever force needed to defeat them, including lethal force. I believe the majority of the country would support this action.

Now, what is the difference between this hypothetical and what Basheer Assad is doing in Syria? He is defending his legal government against an armed insurrection--an attempt to overthrow him and his government. Oh, that's right, he is a "bad guy" and we don't like him, and he is militarily attacking a ragtag group of revolutionaries masquerading as civilian protestors.

I maintain that what Assad is doing in Sryia is none of our--or anyone else's--business. If enough Syrians support the insurrectionists, they will prevail. From recent reports, that does not seem to be the case despite Hillary's unseemly appeal for the populace to rise up; they seem uninclined to do so. I fear we will find some excuse/justification for intervening militarily, probably with air power and SOF (Special Operations Forces) at least initially. Realize that Iran is a strong supporter of the Syrian government and Mr. Assad. Any military intervention could easily open a Pandora's Box of escalation.

Let's just stay home and fix our own problems. Or don't we have enough to keep us busy?

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