Five US destroyers are positioned near Syria, prepared to launch an attack as soon as President Obama gives the order. Each ship carries dozens of million-dollar Tomahawk cruise missiles, each with more explosive power than the bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan. Even a relatively limited bombing campaign will mean disaster for people on the ground in Syria.
The Obama Administration claims that a military attack on Syria will serve to punish its government for the alleged use of chemical weapons. This is nothing more than a pretext. The US itself has a long history of using toxic weapons – from Agent Orange in Vietnam, to white phosphorus in Iraq, and depleted uranium in every major conflict for the past two decades.
The U.S. has not bothered to wait for a report from UN inspectors on the scene in Syria, and has ignored reports that the Assad government may not be responsible at all. Even those who support the Syrian opposition, doubt that Assad would use these weapons, just as UN inspectors were investigating nearby sites. This sounds too much like the big lie used to justify the invasion of Iraq. There were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq ten years ago, and there’s no reason we should believe that the Syrian government is using banned weapons today.
Syria’s real “crime” is to remain independent, ignoring the agenda of US empire in the Middle East, and befriending the patriotic peoples of Iran, Lebanon and Palestine. Obama says chemical weapons, hoping that we have forgotten his goal of “regime change” in Syria. Beyond openly calling for the president to be thrown out, the US has already given more than a billion dollars’ worth of battlefield support to the Syrian opposition. It is not up to the US government, or the people of this country, to decide who should lead the Syrian government. Devastating them (a country smaller than Minnesota) with hundreds of cruise missiles will only make it harder for the Syrian people to decide their own future.
The American people have no interest in a war against Syria. We are tired of war, we can’t afford another war, and we know that no good will come of it, for us or for Syrian people like us. According to recent polls, only 9% of the US public supports military action in Syria, but if Obama wins Congressional support, he says he will go ahead with a punishing attack. We must do everything in our power to stop him.
= We Say NO to War =
– Statement by the Anti-War Committee, September 3, 2013