Pentagon Lays Out Options for U.S. Military Effort in Syria

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    The Pentagon has provided Congress with its first detailed list of military options to stem the bloody civil war in Syria, suggesting that a campaign to tilt the balance from President Bashar al-Assad to the opposition would be a vast undertaking, costing billions of dollars, and could backfire on the United States.

    The list of options — laid out in a letter from the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, to the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Carl Levin of Michigan — was the first time the military has explicitly described what it sees as the formidable challenge of intervening in the war. ...

    ... The options, which range from training opposition troops to conducting airstrikes and enforcing a no-fly zone over Syria, are not new. But General Dempsey provided details about the logistics and the costs of each. He noted that long-range strikes on the Syrian government’s military targets would require “hundreds of aircraft, ships, submarines and other enablers,” and cost “in the billions.”...

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/23/wo...be-costly.html

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  2. 81 Comments...

  3. 7
    The Libertarians in Congress and need to stand up and oppose putting our military personnel and financial assets into the middle of this conflict.
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    ... U.N.: Still Time for Inspectors to Probe Chemical Allegations in Syria

    The threat of a U.S. attack comes just as U.N. inspectors in Syria have begun a probe into the chemical allegations. On Monday, the inspectors met with Syrian victims and collected samples to determine if nerve agents were used. The visit was initially delayed after the inspectors’ convoy came under sniper fire. A U.N. spokesperson said Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon still believes the inspectors can make a proper assessment, even though five days passed before they were allowed entry.

    Farhan Haq: "Despite the passage of a number of days, the Secretary-General is confident that the team will be able to obtain and analyze evidence relevant for its investigation of the 21st of August incident at Ghuta in Damascus. The team will complete its scientific analysis as soon as possible. And the mission will seek to reconstruct an evidence-based narrative of alleged incidents and other information in accordance with its guidelines."

    If confirmed, the attack in Ghouta would mark the world’s worst chemical weapons strike since 1988, when Iraq’s Saddam Hussein gassed thousands of Kurds in Halabja with U.S. complicity ...

    http://www.democracynow.org/2013/8/27/headlines#8272
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    I emphatically oppose any intervention in Syria. Besides the fact that the vast majority of the Muslim world hates us, these people have been killing each other since Biblical times and they are going to continue to do so, whether or not we go in.

    Whipping a little democracy on 'em isn't going to cure the ills of this region....we've seen this recently in Iraq and Afghanistan, where civil war is again erupting despite our having occupied these countries for over a decade. This is all they've ever known, and we can't fix it. The only difference between the way they killed each other in the first century and the way they're killing each other in the twenty-first is the sophistication of the weaponry.
    We've seen the horrifying pictures of those little babies and children who were killed by the chemical weapons, and they hurt our hearts. We are all angry, and we want to avenge these innocents. But should we put our own sons and daughters in danger---AGAIN---to" save" another Muslim country that will only turn on us at some point in the future? As the mother of two Iraq War veterans, I say NO. Not again. Never again.
    imintrouble, tntrn, BCgradnurse, and 3 others like this.
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    Attacking Syria is dangerous and wrong on so many levels. First, we don't know who used the nerve agents and there seems to be credible evidence that it was the US backed rebels. Second, we have never been able to make a positive difference by intervening in other nation's civil wars. They've got to get it figured out by themselves. We need to stay out of it.
    Iran, China, and Russia oppose US military intervention. Now Iran probably can't hit us but they can launch stuff at our surrogate, Israel. China can hurt us economically without firing a single bullet. Russia is already deeply involved in Syria. They could easily have already placed anti-aircraft and anti-ship missiles in Syria. If we fire cruise missiles we could end up with a few ships on the bottom of the ocean. Then what? Is it really worth going to war with Russia?
    imintrouble, VivaLasViejas, Elvish, and 2 others like this.
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    Syria Debate: Does U.S. Have the Evidence and Authority to Hit Assad for Alleged Chemical Attack?

    The Obama administration appears to be pressing ahead with military strikes on Syria despite new obstacles at home and abroad. On Wednesday, an informal meeting of the United Nations Security Council failed to reach an agreement after Russia and China opposed any authorization of force in response to last week’s alleged chemical attack by Assad forces in Ghouta.

    After domestic pressure, British Prime Minister David Cameron announced he will seek parliamentary authorization for using force against Syria, and only after U.N. inspectors complete their current mission.
    And in Washington, the White House plans to brief lawmakers today following growing calls that President Obama seek congressional backing for any use of force. The administration is expected to make public soon some of its intelligence, but skeptics say there remains no smoking gun implicating the Assad regime.

    We host a debate on military intervention in Syria between Tariq Ali of the New Left Review and Steven Clemons of The Atlantic. ...

    http://www.democracynow.org/2013/8/2...es_us_have_the
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    I don't believe that the vast majority of the Muslim world hates us. I believe that a lot of people in Muslim countries don't appreciate the US sticking its nose into their countries' affairs....which is reasonable, since the US wouldn't appreciate them sticking their nose into our affairs. War is not all these people have known. There have been many centuries of prosperity and peace. Damascus is the oldest continuously inhabited city on the planet. Most of them, like most of us, would like to just be left alone to live in peace. Humans there are not so different than humans here.

    The US has fabricated information to justify involvement (or, in the case of WWII, knew about a planned action and did nothing) nearly every single war we've been involved in. I can't believe there are people who would be so gullible as to buy the pack of lies they're spreading now. No more troops dying for someone else's agenda in an unconstitutional war, and no more civilian blood on our hands. Syrians need to figure out what is best for Syria. No more 'nation-building'.

    "I have told my sons that they are not under any circumstances to take part in massacres, and that the news of massacres of enemies is not to fill them with satisfaction or glee. I have also told them not to work for companies which make massacre machinery, and to express contempt for people who think we need machines like that." - Kurt Vonnegut, 'Slaughterhouse-Five'
    Last edit by Elvish on Aug 29, '13
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    Cameron forced to rule out British attack on Syria after MPs reject motion | World news | theguardian.com

    David Cameron indicated on Thursday evening that Britain would not take part in military action against Syria after the government lost a crucial vote on an already watered-down amendment that was designed to pave the way to intervention in the war-torn country.
    In a devastating blow to his authority, the prime minister lost a government motion by 272 votes to 285 – an opposition majority of 13 – after scores of Tory MPs voted with Labour.
    Ministers had thought they were secure after a Labour amendment was defeated, in the first vote of the night, 332 votes to 220, a government majority of 112.
    Labour claimed that the government ran into trouble when Nick Clegg struggled, in the closing minutes of the debate, to answer concerns on all sides of the house that the government motion would have taken Britain closer to joining a US military operation against the Assad regime in Syria after last week's chemical weapons attack


    I was happy to read this.
    imintrouble, azhiker96, herring_RN, and 1 other like this.
  10. 5
    I wrote my representatives up to and including the president that I cannot condone retaliation or responding to violence with violence.
    How can a discrete and limited bombing stop the civil war?

    We didn't help Viet Nam, Afghanistan, or Iraq.
    If the United Nations cannot agree on an action to enforce international law why does the United States have to do it?
    How will that save lives?

    I think President Obama needs to do something other than military action. Or admit he wasn't correct to draw the line in the sand.
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