Saturday, September 7, 2013

Ron Paul Institute Board Members Weigh In On Syria


Members of the Ron Paul Institute For Peace And Prosperity (RPI) advisory board have been making their views on Syria known to media outlets lately. Unsurprisingly, all are against military involvement in Syria's civil war.

Ron Paul, for his part, wrote this in his syndicated column this week:
"I agree that any chemical attack, particularly one that kills civilians, is horrible and horrendous. All deaths in war and violence are terrible and should be condemned. But why are a few hundred killed by chemical attack any worse or more deserving of US bombs than the 100,000 already killed in the conflict?
 Why do these few hundred allegedly killed by Assad count any more than the estimated 1,000 Christians in Syria killed by US allies on the other side? Why is it any worse to be killed by poison gas than to have your head chopped off by the US allied radical Islamists, as has happened to a number of Christian priests and bishops in Syria?
For that matter, why are the few hundred civilians killed in Syria by a chemical weapon any worse than the 2000-3000 who have been killed by Obama’s drone strikes in Pakistan? Does it really make a difference whether a civilian is killed by poison gas or by drone missile or dull knife?"
Walter Jones, the staunchly anti-war Republican Congressman who says he will take his vote invade Iraq to his grave, and who previously introduced legislation to impeach Obama for unilateral action in Syria and Libya, released the following statement:
“I will vote against any proposal to authorize U.S. military intervention in Syria,” said Congressman Jones. “The reality of America’s dismal fiscal situation is that any money spent to bomb Syria will be borrowed from overseas or will be taken from the Defense Department’s already-shrinking budget – resulting in even fewer resources for Eastern North Carolina military installations. Neither of these options is acceptable.”
“Furthermore, there are serious questions about the credibility of the Obama administration’s claims regarding the use of sarin gas in Syria.  The president has failed to explain how our national security depends on engaging in yet another Middle Eastern civil war on the side of radical Islamist rebels who have been documented as possessing sarin gas and beheading Christians, among other atrocities.”
John Duncan Jr., the only remaining Republican Congressman to vote against the Iraq War, who like Jones is firmly anti-war, released this statement:
"I am opposed to us getting involved in another war in the Middle East.  We do not have the authority under our Constitution or even under international law to get involved in a civil war in another country.
While what is going on in Syria is very sad, if we keep getting into situations like this, we will be in a state of almost permanent war.
We spent and will be spending several trillion dollars that we could not afford in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Even so called limited wars have usually led to much greater involvement later on, and I simply do not want to see any young Americans killed in Syria.
We need to start taking care of our own people, and stop trying to run the whole world."
Dennis Kucinich, the former Democratic Congressman who is known as the left's version of Ron Paul in terms of foreign policy, said this in an interview with The Hill:
“So what, we're about to become Al Qaeda's air force now?” Kucinich said. “This is a very, very serious matter that has broad implications internationally. And to try to minimize it by saying we're just going to have a 'targeted strike' — that's an act of war. It's not anything to be trifled with.”
Additionally, Kucinich wrote an excellent opinion editorial entitled "Top 10 Unproven Claims for War Against Syria".

Last but not least, Judge Andrew Napolitano called out the legality issues of Obama's proposed intervention in his Townhall.com column.

Because of the vicissitudes of history, the personalities of presidents and the myopic compromises of past Congresses, the area of presidential war-making has different legal and constitutional ramifications. Under the Constitution, only Congress can authorize the offensive use of military force. James Madison's notes from the Constitutional Convention in 1787 make it obvious that the Framers were nearly unanimous in their resolve to keep the war-making power away from the president and repose it exclusively with Congress. They did this clearly and unambiguously in Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution.
 Notwithstanding the precise language of the Constitution and the history of the nation's birth, the War Powers Resolution (WPR), a federal statute enacted in 1973 over President Nixon's veto, does permit the president on his own to use the military for offensive wars for a maximum of 90 days. Thus, under current federal law, Obama may lawfully bomb Syria even if Congress declines to authorize him to do so and even though such an act would violate international law.
 But the WPR is profoundly unconstitutional because it cedes Congress' constitutional war-making power to the president. The WPR was an ill-conceived political compromise effectuated by a Watergate-weakened president, congressional hawks who approved of Nixon's unilateral invasion of Cambodia and sober congressional heads more faithful to the separation of powers.
 This diverse coalition made up of conservatives, liberals, and libertarians is not only occurring within the RPI, but all across the country as Americans are overwhelmingly against war in Syria. Polls are showing it, and a vote would go a long way of confirming it. As Ron Paul put it in his interview with MSNBC:
“If this vote is won, that is defeat the request to have more military approach to Syria, I think it’d be historic because it’ll be a grand coalition of the libertarian Republicans and the Democratic progressives.”







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