The one area where I know President Obama was not as agile, resourceful, or demanding so to meet a crisis head-on was in Syria. On this blog I called for a no-fly zone and placed myself shoulder-to-shoulder with the likes of John McCain. I strongly advocated for a strong military response to the use of chemical weapons by Syrian President Assad.
No one wants war, and Obama clearly did not want history to write that he started one. But there comes a time in international affairs when there is no more room for debate, and a strong response has to be made. There comes a time when history weighs down on our world leaders to not shy away from the actions that need to be employed.
Military responses are not the first step that should ever be taken to sway or move our opponents. But the bloodshed and carnage that has been allowed to continue from the Assad regime clearly demonstrates they are not mindful of international opinion. It is clear that a more determined way to make a point needs to be registered.
If I were advising the president I would state a full scale strike on the flying assets of Assad needs to happen. The military means that the Assad regime uses to barrel bomb and murder their own civilians needs to be rendered useless.
Our nation has the means to effect change in Syria.
But we sit idly by and make polite diplomatic exchanges that has led us to the fifth year of a most nauseating war which has left hundreds of thousands dead. The NATO allies seem impotent, the United Nations seems unwilling to engage Syria, and the United States looks to be sleeping.
As current readers know I am plowing my way through The Glory And The Dream by William Manchester. I am now past WWII with the riveting narrative. While watching BBC news coverage of the Syrian child pictured above my mind kept asking would it have been wrong during the Holocaust to try to bomb the gas chambers at Auschwitz? Would it not have been the correct thing to do to stop the atrocities? The American public had a deep streak of isolationism but is it not true that a president is elected to lead and show why others must follow? I understand that our military had to mass produce so to be ready for the war that would eventually come, but did we not have a moral calling to act on the knowledge we had about extermination and do something?
I want leadership in the last months of the Obama presidency to make it known to the Syrian government that the time has come for an end to the slaughter of their citizens.
Get our military might to create deep craters in Syrian runways and obliterate their aircraft. We need not send in land forces to make this happen. But we can change the dynamics on the ground for the rebels and create safer days and nights for children like Omran Daqneesh.