The title of this post points to a We the People petition at the White House demanding that the President stand down on attacking Syria. There is no legal authority for attacking Syria and Congress has not exercised its power to declare war. In addition, the limited strikes that the President is contemplating have NO CHANCE of altering the balance of power in the civil war. It would not be a protective act. It would merely kill people that don’t seem to be particularly valued by either side in this conflict.
For a good explanation of why these strikes won’t work and why it might be bad even if they succeeded, check out Red Lines over at Stonekettle Station. There are a lot of moral, strategic and tactical questions laid out there. It’s worth reading the whole thing.
Although I want us to stay out of Syria because I don’t see any action that doesn’t make things worse, I would go along with the approach that Stonekettle Station proprietor Jim Wright suggests:
I think President Obama should go before the nation and clearly outline the options.
Limited strikes, no fly zones, boots on the ground, invasion and occupation, humanitarian relief only, or no action. Whatever the options his advisers are giving him, A to Z. I think he should explain as best he is able, in simple terms, the advantages and disadvantages of each, and the expected consequences and outcomes.
I think he should tell us which option he prefers.
Then I think he should publicly call for a vote in Congress.
I think every member of Congress should go on record, yea or nay, as representatives of the people of the United States.
And then I think the President should abide by that decision
It may not be the choice I want, but at least it would respect our democracy and provide an accounting of what to expect.
But given the track we’re currently on, I think that all of us who object to bombing Syria or taking sides in their civil war need to make our voices heard quickly and loudly. As I write this, the No to War in Syria petition has 8,095 signatures. We need more and we need them now. Please sign and share.
This post is going to stay at the top of this blog until we either stand down or start bombing.