I am normally very supportive of the president's domestic and foreign policy actions, but I do not think we should take military action against Syria.
Bashar al-Assad is evil in every respect, but it is the task of the Syrian people and other Middle East governments to deal with him. He is their problem, politically and religiously, and they must deal with him in their way and in their time.
Our credibility is not at stake. We have very little positive credibility in the area after Iraq and Afghanistan. Continuing to rebuild our reputation can only succeed by aiding our allies, not by more military action. We can aid surrounding countries by providing safe areas for refugees. We can craft an agreement among many nations to completely isolate Assad, economically and financially. That signal will be more powerful than a military strike. It would illustrate the penalty for the use of poison gas. All nations realize the danger of renegade use of cheap poison gas, and even his friends would be encouraged to join the effort.
Can we prevent being attacked in the future? No. But a strong and united society can withstand attack and punish attackers. We will be credible overseas when we create a society in which people of all races, religions and ethnic backgrounds can dwell in safety and prosperity. We need to build a future of stable lives and families here at home. Read Richard Haas' book, "Foreign Policy Begins at Home." He's correct.
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