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NewsOpinionReaders Respond

The folly of attacking Syria

ElectionsBiological and Chemical WeaponsArmed ConflictsBarack ObamaBashar Assad

The Sun editorial staff is of the opinion that the "U.S. must act decisively and forcefully to punish [President Bashar] Assad for his choice to unleash chemical weapons on innocent civilians in Syria — even if our allies won't" ("Where is the outrage?" Sept. 4). The editorial goes on to suggest that there were "more than 1,400 people dead, 400 of them children, from rocket attacks spreading a chemical agent."

But is President Barack Obama's belated concern over civilian casualties really about punishing Mr. Assad for using chemical weapons — or about covering up his Middle East policy disasters in Libya and Egypt, plus his ill-advised "red line" speech?

Where was the president's outrage over the 100,000-plus people who have been killed in Syria since last year?

All too often presidents use our military to protect their political careers — such as President Jimmy Carter did when he tried to win re-election by ordering an attempt to free the hostages held by Iran and President George W. Bush's rush to war in Iraq with no clear evidence that Saddam Hussein even had weapons of mass destruction or planned to use them.

Clearly, this is the same road President Obama is taking to save his face. His actions have nothing to do with protecting the United States.

Hopefully, Congress will not authorize any military action against Syria since once it does the Constitution allows the president to wage war without restraints unless two-thirds of both houses of the legislature vote to stop it. And as we all know from the history of past authorizations, that will not happen.

Ron Wirsing, Havre de Grace

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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