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Considering All the Options

September 7, 2013
By MIKE MYER , The Intelligencer / Wheeling News-Register

So, let me get this straight: President Barack Obama says we absolutely, positively must attack Syria in retaliation for that county's alleged use of poison gas against its own people.

To be meaningful, a U.S. assault would have to weaken dictator Bashar Assad's armed forces. That could allow rebels to prevail against him during the civil war.

Rebel forces, including quite a few elements of al-Qaida and other terrorist organizations, would then take over the country - including Assad's stocks of chemical weapons. Anyone want to venture a guess as to how the terrorists would use those armaments?

Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry are framing their request for congressional approval of an attack on Syria in very simple terms. It amounts to them saying Syria has been bad and needs to be punished.

Now, they are adding that if we don't attack Syria, the U.S. won't have any credibility with Iran and North Korea.

Would that the situation were that simple. But nothing is ever that simple. A few thoughts one wonders whether anyone in Washington has had:

Now, I'm not a military man or a diplomat. I don't know the answers to any of those questions. But I do know that I haven't heard most of them addressed by anyone in Obama's administration. I haven't heard of anyone even asking some of them.

What's that? Even discussing such possibilities could give Assad ideas? Don't be naive. In a vicious part of the world, Assad has gained a reputation for ruthlessness. Rest assured, he's considering all his options.

Are we?

Myer can be reached at

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