The House should be very clear that a resounding “NO!” means NO!
It actually goes far beyond just this aggression into a nation where the US has ZERO national interest. The real issue is the unconstitutional power that has been taken by a hundred years of US presidents.
It began at the start of the “progressive era” under Teddy Roosevelt. In a show of machismo and belligerence, Roosevelt wanted to send the new US navy, bristling with battleships, around the world, to, in effect, try to intimidate and menace the entire world.
And congress said No! Congress refused to break the bank and give Roosevelt a blank check to intimidate the rest of the world. The US was already a world power because we *had* the navy. But Teddy Roosevelt wanted us to in effect rule the world.
Roosevelt did not capitulate. Instead he ordered the US Navy to go to the other side of the world. Halfway.
“If congress wants a navy, then they must pay to bring them back.” Such was his unprincipled arrogance.
While congress agreed to pay for the return of the US navy, the result was *not* what Roosevelt expected. The rest of the world did not cower before our might, but instead began building their own battleship navies. And submarine navies. And even some of the first aircraft carriers.
The end result of which was that when the opportunity for World War I presented itself, the carnage was staggering.
However, and this is the important part, the US president taking the power of appropriations for the military away from congress was an awful precedent; which Woodrow Wilson followed up with a rubber stamp war from congress in World War I.
Right now, Obama is considering a poorly thought out scheme against one small part of an axis of nations opposed by an alliance of nations, not unlike World War I.
Syria is aligned with the eastern half of Lebanon and Hezbollah, Iran, Russia, and with considerable Shiite sympathies in Iraq.
The Syrian rebels have the support of Saudi Arabia, France, Egypt, some degree of support from Pakistan, Chechnya, Iraq’s Sunnis, and marginal support from the US and England.
The Turks, Kurds, western Lebanese, Hamas in Gaza, Fatah in the West Bank, Jordan, Yemen, and several European nations are off to the side, but might get dragged in.
All the players want to drag Israel in.
The best outcome we can hope for is that this mess continues until Syria is a smoking hole, and that Iranian and Russian weapons are destroyed as soon as they get there.
But the US must avoid throwing our hand it if at all possible. Our efforts should be in keeping other hands *out* of Syria as well.
A well-stated and information post. Thank you!