Lawmakers oppose Syrian intervention - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Lawmakers oppose Syrian intervention

Amarillo, TX - Aristotle once said, "It is not enough to win a war - it is more important to organize the peace."  But our congressional leaders are saying a war in Syria is likely unwinnable, and lasting peace is likely unattainable.

In a special address Tuesday (Sept. 10), President Obama presented his argument for American intervention in Syria on both moral and logistical grounds.

He says the U.S. has an ethical responsibility to step in, and that doing nothing would ultimately threaten our own national security.

"The facts cannot be denied," stated Obama.  "The question now is what the United States of America, and the international community, is prepared to do about it. Because what happened to those people -- to those children -- is not only a violation of international law, it's also a danger to our security."

Russia has proposed allowing Syrian President Bashir al-Assad to voluntarily relinquish his chemical stockpile to be destroyed by international agencies.

In a June interview, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Russia was not taking sides with any country, but rather upholding international laws.

"We're not defending the current Syrian government - we're defending other things entirely," said Putin.  "We're defending the principles and norms of international law. We're defending the current world order. We're defending the rule that even the possibility of using force must be discussed within the framework of existing world order and international law."

Representative Mac Thornberry just released a statement today, voicing his opposition to intervention and skepticism of Putin's proposal.  Here is an excerpt from that statement:

"I cannot support the President's request for Congress to authorize the use of military force in Syria. I am extremely doubtful that the Russian offer to put Syria's chemical weapons under international control is genuine or even possible. But regardless of the outcome of that offer, I am concerned that the Administration does not have a clear, obtainable military plan to advance effectively the national security interests of the United States."

As of this writing, 295 members of Congress have expressed their opposition to U.S. involvement in Syria, with only 49 in favor of it.

You can find the full transcript of Obama's speech along with more background information at the links attached to this story.

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