Events in Syria are taking a turn for the worse. Every day brings a new report of a gruesome massacre of civilians by government forces, and efforts by the international community to arrange for a cease-fire have failed.
Some have argued that America should take military action in Syria to stop the killing. Senator John McCain is one such voice. So far, however, the Obama Administration has resisted any military intervention, hoping instead that international pressure will eventually topple the Assad regime.
I’m with the President on this one. The reports of cold-blooded civilian killings in Syria are heart-breaking, but America simply can’t take military action anywhere and everywhere that despotic governments are killing and mistreating their citizens. Military intervention should be reserved for what should be rare instances implicating our vital national interests. As tragic as events are in Syria, it’s hard to see how crucial American interests are at stake there.
It sounds cold-blooded to talk of money at a time when innocents lives are being lost, but the United States also needs to consider its financial situation. The missiles, airplane fuel, ordinance, and military personnel that would be used in any Syrian intervention would cost money that we just don’t have right now.
We need to start making choices as part of getting our fiscal house in order, both domestically and abroad. This is an instance where the choice should be to stay our hand. If there is to be military action in Syria, let it be led by the Arab League states. They should use their oil revenues to police their own neighborhood.