Letters to the Editor

Act on Syria

February 25, 2012


To the editor:

Dear President Obama: Do not give up your day job. Please pay attention to Sen. McCain’s request that we provide arms for defense of the innocents being slaughtered in their fight to free themselves from the tyranny of Assad in Syria. You know, I know, Sen. McCain knows that United Nations resolutions are seldom, if ever, effective in these matters. Every day you delay letting the world know which side we are on condemns more to the meat grinder operating in Syria.

Surely we are on the right side there just as we were in Libya? Step up and help these people help themselves by shipping them more and better arms to defend themselves. After all they are doing much not to just rid themselves of a butcher, but his fall will truly isolate Iran from the rest of the Arab Muslim world and make your sanctions stronger.

Take this opportunity to make those Americans who voted for you proud and able to say “he is a real leader.” Do what Teddy Roosevelt would do and show what America still stands for. It would also quiet much of the criticism that you cannot be presidential. Show your John Wayne side. People would love it.


cato_the_elder 6 years, 3 months ago

"Dear President Obama: Do not give up your day job."

Obama's primary day job since he was elected has been running for re-election in 2012. He's just returned from Florida, having soaked more groups of gullible liberals for tons of money, while his staff continues to deny that he's "campaigning."

Good grief.

P Allen Macfarlane 6 years, 3 months ago

It is worth pointing out that since day 1 of his term it has been the job of Republicans and conservative groups to see that he is a one-term president. So, they and their superpacs have been soaking up dollars just as much as the Democrats have, Shame on you for being so disingenuous!

Richard Heckler 6 years, 3 months ago


A $7 billion missile-defense system for the United Arab Emirates. An estimated $15 billion potential sale of Lockheed Martin’s brand-new fighter plane to Israel. Billions of dollars in weaponry for Taiwan and Turkey. These and other recent deals helped make the United States the world’s leading arms-exporting nation.

The Pentagon routinely justifies weapons sales as “promoting regional stability,” but many of these arms end up in the world’s war zones. In 2006 and 2007, the five biggest recipients of U.S. weapons were Pakistan ($3.5 billion), Iraq ($2.2 billion), Israel ($2.2 billion), Afghanistan ($1.9 billion) and Colombia ($580 million) – all countries where conflict rages.

In Pakistan, the fighting ranges from communal violence and state repression, to attacks against India, to deadly battles between Pakistani military and al Qaeda forces in the northwest provinces. Israel has used U.S.-supplied weapons in the West Bank and Gaza, as well as in the 2006 invasion of Lebanon. Colombia uses U.S. weaponry to fight the drug war. Of the 27 major conflicts during 2006 and 2007, 19 of them involved U.S-supplied weapons.

While full data is not yet available for 2008, the United States continues to flood warzones with more destabilizing weapons. In 2008, the Pentagon brokered more than $12.5 billion in possible foreign military sales to Iraq, including guns, ammunition, tanks and attack helicopters.

Raed Jarrar, an Iraqi analyst with American Friends Service Committee, notes the chance that this weaponry will promote peace and democracy in Iraq is slim.

What’s more, the United States cannot successfully track its weapons. Hundreds of thousands of U.S.-supplied pistols and automatic weapons destined for Iraqi security forces between 2004 and 2005 remain lost, according to the Government Accountability Office.

The Pentagon has “no idea where they are,” Rachel Stohl, a senior analyst at the Center for Defense Information, a national-security think tank, told the Washington Post in 2007. “It likely means that the United States is unintentionally providing weapons to bad actors.”

Michael Klare, director of the Amherst, Mass.-based Five College Program in Peace and World Security Studies, has followed the arms trade for decades. He discounts official claims that the delivery of arms can help promote stability.

“The more we help one side, the more that regime’s opponents are driven to seek arms from another supplier, leading to an inevitable spiral of arms buying, provocation and conflict,” Klare says.


Mike Ford 6 years, 3 months ago

oh conservative know nothings.....an apology is his way of being publically accountable for the actions that began this mess....the nonsense I heard on kmbz yesterday was the typical no brainer load that got us into Iraq and Afghanistan. This vitriol makes us look like hatfields and mccoys to the rest of the world. oh well.

Joe Hyde 6 years, 3 months ago

A question worth asking is what would happen if enough food, medicine, weapons and ammo and combat intelligence is given to Syria's rebels that they succeed in overthrowing Assad's lethal regime.

Would the new, post-revolt government be amenable to peacefully co-existing with Israel and other neighboring states? Or would western support of today's Syrian rebels only install new leaders there who might, once Assad is gone, choose to remain a threat to the Syrian people and a destabilizing factor to regional stability?

Tricky situation in many longterm respects. One thing's for sure: When you see tanks blasting residential areas, when army snipers are gunning down unarmed people in the streets simply because they are protesting government policy, it makes you want to help the underdog go bigdog. Authoritarian regimes are just a huge pain in the butt.

Armstrong 6 years, 3 months ago

How about Obama please give up your day job. Much better

Mike Ford 6 years, 3 months ago

oh.....in the bubble dumb kansans.....please take me back to 1956 or 1926.

Mike Ford 6 years, 3 months ago

oh.....in the bubble dumb kansans.....please take me back to 1956 or 1926.

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