Open letter to Carper, Coons and Carney

September 17, 2013

Please oppose the resolution to attack Syria. No one condones the use of chemical weapons, but what President Obama proposes - and Republican Speaker John Boehner seems to support - will not help those who have been gassed. It will, however, result in more dangerous acts by a wounded Syrian dictator.

The reasons not to attack are extensive:

• There is no vital strategic national interest at stake. In fact our economic health and ability to produce jobs will likely be hurt by resulting oil, gas, and transportation price spikes.

• Russian soldiers are operating Syria’s air defense system. They as well as Chinese, Iranian or North Korean technicians could be killed. Much smaller events have triggered wars; witness the death of Archduke Ferdinand before World War I.

• Our military is depleted and stressed. Syria is not Grenada; it will not stay “short term” or “limited.” Descriptive adjectives like “proportional” telegraph that if Syria or neighboring countries react, we will up the ante.

• The window of opportunity has passed; when we had tens of thousands of troops in Iraq and moderate Syrian rebels were viable, there might have been a chance for success, but not now. With all the “red line” blustering, delays and bungling, Syrian President Assad has had time to deploy civilians as human shields to assure dramatic casualties.

• There are more than a million peaceful Christians in Syria. Assad has consolidated his forces leaving none to protect them. They are being slaughtered by the rebels our government proposes to support. Assad is no champion of religious freedom, but he has protected Christians far better than other Islamic nations have. If Sunni rebels seize power hundreds of thousands Christians will die or be driven out.

• Israel will suffer a counter attack. Iran says it will attack U.S. interests, perhaps our embassy in Bagdad. Have we forgotten Benghazi in less than a year? Libya was no success even with international support.

• The American people overwhelmingly oppose attacking Syria. There is no meaningful international coalition.

• There are reports that chemical weapons were used by Syrian rebels - the people we are proposing to prop up.

• American credibility is eroded by bucking most of the rest of the world. Our credibility needs to be preserved for vital crises where American national security is at stake.

What are the reasons for attacking? None which are achievable… unless the objective is to distract Americans from the IRS, NSA and Benghazi scandals. Is political face-saving more important than our national security?

Grassroots opposition to attacking Syria is a bi-partisan issue. I call on citizens from all political persuasions - and particularly those who opposed attacking Iraq and Afghanistan - and you our Congressional delegation, to stand up and be counted. Let’s stop this risky act of war before it starts. I’d like to stand with you.

Glen Urquhart
2010 Republican nominee for Congress
Rehoboth Beach

  • A letter to the editor expresses a reader's opinion and, as such, is not reflective of the editorial opinions of this newspaper.

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