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So Dennis Kucinich had an article in the Huffpost a few days ago saying that military action wasn't justified in Syria.  He made some interesting points and basically questioned the source of all the facts being used to justify a military strike.  Here's that article: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dennis-j-kucinich/syria-war-questions_b_3870763.html

 

So today's PD has former conservative editorial director, Brent Larkin, shredding Kucinich for that piece and for some questionable comments he made after visiting Syria back in 2008.  http://www.cleveland.com/opinion/index.ssf/2013/09/kucinichs_defense_of_bashar_as.html#incart_river_default

 

what the heck WAS Kucinich doing in Syria back in 2008? 

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So Dennis Kucinich had an article in the Huffpost a few days ago saying that military action wasn't justified in Syria.  He made some interesting points and basically questioned the source of all the facts being used to justify a military strike.  Here's that article: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dennis-j-kucinich/syria-war-questions_b_3870763.html

 

So today's PD has former conservative editorial director, Brent Larkin, shredding Kucinich for that piece and for some questionable comments he made after visiting Syria back in 2008.  http://www.cleveland.com/opinion/index.ssf/2013/09/kucinichs_defense_of_bashar_as.html#incart_river_default

 

what the heck WAS Kucinich doing in Syria back in 2008? 

 

Kucinich supports HITLER!

 

This is an emotional diatribe.

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So Dennis Kucinich had an article in the Huffpost a few days ago saying that military action wasn't justified in Syria.  He made some interesting points and basically questioned the source of all the facts being used to justify a military strike.  Here's that article: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dennis-j-kucinich/syria-war-questions_b_3870763.html

 

So today's PD has former conservative editorial director, Brent Larkin, shredding Kucinich for that piece and for some questionable comments he made after visiting Syria back in 2008.  http://www.cleveland.com/opinion/index.ssf/2013/09/kucinichs_defense_of_bashar_as.html#incart_river_default

 

what the heck WAS Kucinich doing in Syria back in 2008? 

 

Brent Larkin was never really a "conservative".  Moderate, perhaps. 

 

He was always a pretty sharp journalist, though.  Not in this piece though.  How terrible chemical weapons attacks are is not in question.  How this particular one happened, is.

 

It is a fair question what Dennis was doing in 2008, though seeking headlines is the likely answer.

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Ted Cruz says the President lacks the constitutional authority to order a strike without congressional approval..... although I suspect that opinion will change if asked whether he agreed that the President made the right move by seeking congressional approval.  Faced with that question, the answer would probably be something along the lines of "If I was President, I would have shown the leadership necessary to order the strikes and not bogged myself down with congressional bickering"

 

http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2013/09/sen-ted-cruz-i-dont-think-president-obama-has-the-authority-to-order-syria-strike-without-congressional-approval/

 

On a related note, this guy wears entirely too much make-up to be taken seriously.....

 

ted_cruz_this_week_jt_130908_16x9_608_zpsa32947a8.jpg

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What's been amazing on this entire Syria situation is how FAR REMOVED Hillary Clinton is from the whole thing.  Not a peep, not a quote, not a comment, not a suggestion, nothing.... 

 

Surprising considering she is the leading candidate for 2016 and was the Secy of State for much of the events leading up to the latest use of nerve gas. 

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What's been amazing on this entire Syria situation is how FAR REMOVED Hillary Clinton is from the whole thing.  Not a peep, not a quote, not a comment, not a suggestion, nothing.... 

 

NOT Surprising considering she is the leading candidate for 2016 and was the Secy of State for much of the events leading up to the latest use of nerve gas. 

 

Fixed that for ya.

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What's been amazing on this entire Syria situation is how FAR REMOVED Hillary Clinton is from the whole thing.  Not a peep, not a quote, not a comment, not a suggestion, nothing.... 

 

Is it just as "amazing" that Chris Christie has deferred on the issue?

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^Yep.  In fact, you could argue he "is the leading candidate for 2016."  And while he is a Governor, that is more than Hillary is presently.  Admittedly, the fact that she was the last SOS prior to Kerry would lend some intrigue to her opinion.  But I personally don't find it the least bit "amazing" that neither have taken a position.

 

All of this is looking pointless, anyways.  Public support for unilateral action is so low that I don't see Congress voting to give authorization.  Good.  As I posted before, as long as we keep cleaning up around the world on our dime, the international community has no incentive to achieve some much needed reform in the U.N. (particularly with the way the security council works). 

 

 

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^Yep.  In fact, you could argue he "is the leading candidate for 2016."  And while he is a Governor, that is more than Hillary is presently.  Admittedly, the fact that she was the last SOS prior to Kerry would lend some intrigue to her opinion.  But I personally don't find it the least bit "amazing" that neither have taken a position.

 

All of this is looking pointless, anyways.  Public support for unilateral action is so low that I don't see Congress voting to give authorization.  Good.  As I posted before, as long as we keep cleaning up around the world on our dime, the international community has no incentive to achieve some much needed reform in the U.N. (particularly with the way the security council works). 

 

 

Good?  Good that thousands of innocent Syrians were killed by nerve gas?  Or good that it's not our problem?  Taking action obviously as potential consequences, but what are the potential effects of NOT taking action?  Are we really deferring to public opinion on these types of international issues?  How many "average Americans" are qualified to weigh in on this?  Most can't name their congressman or senator let alone comprehend the complex issues of taking action or not taking action

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How could you possibly take my post as suggesting that it is "good that thousands of innocent Syrians were killed by nerve gas"??? ?  Seriously?

 

FWIW, wrong on all counts.  Read, and more importantly, try to comprehend, my post.  If additional context is needed, check the earlier reply (#14) I referenced.

 

I will have to save your post for the "Washington elite knows what's best for ya" tone ;)

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How could you possibly take my post as suggesting that it is "good that thousands of innocent Syrians were killed by nerve gas"??? ?  Seriously?

 

 

Pretty strong evidence that Assad regime has used gas on it's own people several times now.  No consequences or action from the US is the same as an acceptance.  I don't think there's anything "good" about that situation.  Waiting for congress to weigh in opened the door for politics, endless debate, and the likelihood of inaction.  That's pretty obvious.

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How could you possibly take my post as suggesting that it is "good that thousands of innocent Syrians were killed by nerve gas"??? ?  Seriously?

 

 

Pretty strong evidence that Assad regime has used gas on it's own people several times now.  No consequences or action from the US is the same as an acceptance.  I don't think there's anything "good" about that situation.  Waiting for congress to weigh in opened the door for politics, endless debate, and the likelihood of inaction.  That's pretty obvious.

Are you purposefully being dense or are you legitimately unable to understand what Hts121 said?  I mean, he even provided more context to his post and supplied you with the information that could help you find his earlier post on the matter (reply 14, in case you missed it). In fact, below is a quote from reply 14:

 

I just hope that, for once, we force the UN's hand.  Even if the UN doesn't do anything here and the situation in Syria just plays out to a tragic end, it would possibly lead to some much needed reform at the UN.

 

Regardless, its a foreign policy nightmare, with groups like hezbollah backing the regime and al-queda infiltrating the rebels

And, in case you need more help, here is his more recent post about Syria and a possible U.S. intervention:

 

^Yep.  In fact, you could argue he "is the leading candidate for 2016."  And while he is a Governor, that is more than Hillary is presently.  Admittedly, the fact that she was the last SOS prior to Kerry would lend some intrigue to her opinion.  But I personally don't find it the least bit "amazing" that neither have taken a position.

 

All of this is looking pointless, anyways.  Public support for unilateral action is so low that I don't see Congress voting to give authorization.  Good.  As I posted before, as long as we keep cleaning up around the world on our dime, the international community has no incentive to achieve some much needed reform in the U.N. (particularly with the way the security council works). 

 

 

So, how exactly did you get to thinking that Hts121 suggested that the deaths of thousands of innocent people was a good thing?

 

Further, I can't say that I disagree with him; I am not in favor of a U.S. intervention as I think we can no longer afford to be the "World Police." If anything, we should strongly encourage the U.N. and the rest of the modern world to take action. Only then should we involve ourselves, and in a very understated way.

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What kind of reform at the UN could possibly come from deliberately allowing this tragedy to continue and playing the UN farce to its conclusion?  There will be no reform.  The entire edifice is practically designed to resist reform.

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^There are several reforms I could hope for.  Doing away with 'pocket vetos' would be one.  Allowing the security council veto power only on a majority vote of its members would be another (this, BTW, might not even require any alteration to the UN Charter.... just a different interpretation of the language already in there).  Certainly the idea of "great power unanimity" has to go for the UN to serve its purpose.  Essentially, what needs to be done is the passage, by the entire UN chamber, of something stronger than the "Uniting for Peace" resolution, largely because such resolutions are more symbolic than anything else considering that the security council can still block active enforcement of any passed resolution with a single veto.

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What kind of reform at the UN could possibly come from deliberately allowing this tragedy to continue and playing the UN farce to its conclusion?  There will be no reform.  The entire edifice is practically designed to resist reform.

 

P. J. O’Rourke observed that it’s always been popular to say that America’s not the world’s policeman, but when Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait, no one called Sweden.

 

Unlike some on the right, I see the UN as having value, but it’s ultimately a deliberative/discussion body.  It can’t really be counted on to take action.  For one thing, it’s like a police commission in a really corrupt city:  the criminals have representation.

 

It’s in America’s best interests to maintain some degree of international stability and free travel over the seas.  We have the resources to do this, and it would likely cost us more not to.

 

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I agree that the UN serves a very valuable purpose, but the maintenance of international security is not one of them and the promotion of human, civil, and political rights is emphatically not one of them, for the very reason you said (on a pure numerical basis, the overwhelming majority of the UN is authoritarian).

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^I think, if given the authority, the collective moral compass of the UN chamber would easily override any authoritarian approach taken back at home by individual countries.

 

It’s in America’s best interests to maintain some degree of international stability and free travel over the seas.  We have the resources to do this, and it would likely cost us more not to.

 

Do you believe that striking at the Assad regime is necessary to maintain some degree of international stability and free travel over the seas?

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Ignoring the many, many plights at home in exchange for a confusing mission in Syria is an insult to Americans. Frankly, I'm more concerned with the terrified children walking through "Safe Passages' than Syrian casualties in a muddied civil war. Obama's pursuit of some vague and shortsighted military bombing campaign is absorbing ALL of his attention the last few weeks, whereas we have traumatized kids walking through gang territories with only a sign reading "Safe Passage" and the occasional temporary city employee ensuring their safety. Where is his statement on that? Where is his consulting with governors to put in longterm National Guardsmen to make sure these kids get to school unmolested? Where is he even acknowledging what's happening these days to American youth with school closings and once functional neighborhoods turning into ghettos. 1400 Syrian died in a chemical attack; god knows how many American children have been murdered since then (hundreds I'm guessing)? It's like there is a political acceptance of American children being traumatized and murdered (our hands our tied, it's cultural, jobs will save everyone, and blah blah blah rhetoric is the only response), but when that happens in other countries due to chemical weapons, only then do politicians discussion military action.

 

I don't want to hear him talk about Syria tomorrow. I want him to talk about America and what's happening in our city schools and what he plans on doing about it. He has to prioritize our children before Syria's, and he's not. Not really. 

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^That's a can of worms, my friend (the prioritization question is by itself, putting aside the idea of installing some form of de facto martial law in the ghettos)....probably better for another thread to not lose sight of the much more narrow issue (if you can call it that) in play here.  Suffice it to say, I think Obama is spending and has spent a lot less time on Syria than you are assuming.

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^I think, if given the authority, the collective moral compass of the UN chamber would easily override any authoritarian approach taken back at home by individual countries.

 

That is an utterly incomprehensible belief.  What in the history, composition, or structure of the U.N. would cause you to believe such a thing?  For that matter, why do you believe that the U.N. has a "collective moral compass" at all, let alone one that is somehow qualitatively different from the sum of its individual members?

 

The notion that a majority of governments would vote against their own self-interest on anything, particularly on issues that could threaten regime survival, is fantasy.

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^Maybe he should have traveled to Syria to "identify the good guys" among the rebel ranks.... and hopefully not get caught "pal'ing around with terrorists" while there

 

McCainSyria_zps8aeea6de.png

 

why do you believe that the U.N. has a "collective moral compass" at all, let alone one that is somehow qualitatively different from the sum of its individual members?

 

Well.... just an example - http://www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/HRC/Pages/HRCIndex.aspx

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Why should he have spent any time on Syria the last few years?  It can't be just about human rights because there are countries where things are actually in worse shape than Syria i.e. North Korea and its death camp wonderlands. It can't be just about regional destabilization fears because that is inevitable with all Arab revolutions, which we basically ignored other than Libya, and at least there it was with a coalition. It can't be about oil because Syria is such a minor player. It can't be about the convenient boogeyman Iran. Hell, we certainly were not involved in their failed recent revolution in 09.

 

People die in civil wars. It's tragic but it's nothing new. Killing their civilians (since we won't take out Assad) for no purpose other than to punish them and feel less impotent is what will happen. That is all this is - proof that Kerry and McCain and Obama have working genitals. That is the only positive results that could possibly come from some limited, tiny, microlevel bombings, or whatever kerry called it

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^Maybe he should have traveled to Syria to "identify the good guys" among the rebel ranks.... and hopefully not get caught "pal'ing around with terrorists" while there

 

McCainSyria_zps8aeea6de.png

 

why do you believe that the U.N. has a "collective moral compass" at all, let alone one that is somehow qualitatively different from the sum of its individual members?

 

Well.... just an example - http://www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/HRC/Pages/HRCIndex.aspx

 

I'm not sure that helps your case:

 

http://www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/HRC/Pages/CurrentMembers.aspx

 

Members include Angola, Sierra Leone, Pakistan, Congo, Ivory Coast ... Orwell would be proud to have them on the Human Rights Council.

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For McCain, at least, I'm betting this is actually about Iran.  He's one of the largest anti-Iran hawks in the Senate and Syria is one of Iran's largest regional cats-paws.

 

That wouldn't explain Kerry (or Obama), though.

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So, looks like in the face of a looming 'no' vote from Congress, White House is proposing Plan B

 

Kerry Floats a Deal on Arms, and Russia and Syria Seize It

 

MOSCOW — A seemingly offhand suggestion by Secretary of State John Kerry that Syria could avert an American attack by relinquishing its chemical weapons received an almost immediate welcome from Syria, Russia, the United Nations, key American allies and even some Republicans on Monday as a possible way to avoid a major international military showdown in the Syria crisis. A White House official said the administration was taking a “hard look” at the idea.

 

While there was no indication that Mr. Kerry was searching for a political settlement to the Syrian crisis in making his comment, Russia — the Syrian government’s most powerful supporter — seized on it as a way of proposing international control of Syria’s chemical weapons arsenal

 

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/10/world/middleeast/kerry-says-syria-should-hand-over-all-chemical-arms.html?hp

 

BTW, if anyone is interested in a more detailed coverage of what's happening in Syria, follow Andy Carvin from NPR on Twitter. His feed has lately been a great mix of alternative news agencies, and people in Syria reporting their experiences. And for the anti-NPR group screaming 'liberal agenda', this is very well balanced. His tweets have been pretty evenly split between those advocating for bombing and those against the idea.

 

@acarvin

 

Stuff like this is why I love Twitter.

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^^I was just giving it as an example in response to your question.  There are numerous members of the U.N. that have committed horendous atrocities.  Some would lump the U.S. in that category.  But that's not the point.  You have a group of several nations who have joined together for collective strength.  Perhpas one of them allows slavery, one tramples on the rights of women, one is a proponent of the use of chemical weapons, etc., etc.  But when they come together to reach collective resolutions, the end result is that slavery is abolished, womens' rights are protected, chemical weapons are outlawed, and so on.  HOWEVER, it frustrates the process when you have a few select members of the group who are allowed to unilaterally and arbitrarily allowed to veto any resolution the collective group reaches.

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^^^^^because we're not isolationists, not yet anyway. Nicholas Kristof wrote an excellent column yesterday on intervention in Syria. But maybe, as he quoted Sarah Palin, perhaps you agree with her: “So we’re bombing Syria because Syria is bombing Syria?” Sarah Palin wrote, in a rare comment that liberals might endorse. Her suggestion: “Let Allah sort it out.” I really don't know what should be done. This situation is so complicated at this point and so fraught with the potential for dangerous repercussions regardless of whether we do anything. This is why it should have been addressed years ago, since everyone knew that Assad had been amassing chemical weapons for many years and has used them on many occasions.

 

Pulling the Curtain Back on Syria

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/08/opinion/sunday/kristof-pulling-the-curtain-back-on-syria.html?ref=nicholasdkristof&_r=0

"...while there are many injustices around the world, from Darfur to eastern Congo, take it from one who has covered most of them: Syria is today the world capital of human suffering."

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The Allah line was in bad taste. The "We're bombing Syria because Syria is bombing Syria" or "We're not Al Qaeda's airforce" lines are clever and bear a lot of truth.

 

And I would argue that what is happening in North Korea is worse than Syria. Chemical weapons and conventional warfare just do not hold a candle to state-run concentration camps and a population overwhelmingly tortured and brainwashed and hopeless. It's the closest thing the planet has to a "maybe death is better off" tragedy, and frankly the word 'tragedy' doesn't come close to describing their lives.

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And I would argue that what is happening in North Korea is worse than Syria. Chemical weapons and conventional warfare just do not hold a candle to state-run concentration camps and a population overwhelmingly tortured and brainwashed and hopeless. It's the closest thing the planet has to a "maybe death is better off" tragedy, and frankly the word 'tragedy' doesn't come close to describing their lives.

 

Yes, but you aren't really in favor of action in North Korea, are you?

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And I would argue that what is happening in North Korea is worse than Syria. Chemical weapons and conventional warfare just do not hold a candle to state-run concentration camps and a population overwhelmingly tortured and brainwashed and hopeless. It's the closest thing the planet has to a "maybe death is better off" tragedy, and frankly the word 'tragedy' doesn't come close to describing their lives.

 

Yes, but you aren't really in favor of action in North Korea, are you?

 

That all depends on the meaning of the word "action".  Certainly a coup like happened in Egypt and almost happened in Venezuela would be worthy of support.

 

The problem in Syria is the evidence is sketchy and the side we'd be helping is worse than the government.

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So, looks like in the face of a looming 'no' vote from Congress, White House is proposing Plan B

 

Kerry Floats a Deal on Arms, and Russia and Syria Seize It

 

MOSCOW — A seemingly offhand suggestion by Secretary of State John Kerry that Syria could avert an American attack by relinquishing its chemical weapons received an almost immediate welcome from Syria, Russia, the United Nations, key American allies and even some Republicans on Monday as a possible way to avoid a major international military showdown in the Syria crisis. A White House official said the administration was taking a “hard look” at the idea.

 

While there was no indication that Mr. Kerry was searching for a political settlement to the Syrian crisis in making his comment, Russia — the Syrian government’s most powerful supporter — seized on it as a way of proposing international control of Syria’s chemical weapons arsenal

 

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/10/world/middleeast/kerry-says-syria-should-hand-over-all-chemical-arms.html?hp

 

BTW, if anyone is interested in a more detailed coverage of what's happening in Syria, follow Andy Carvin from NPR on Twitter. His feed has lately been a great mix of alternative news agencies, and people in Syria reporting their experiences. And for the anti-NPR group screaming 'liberal agenda', this is very well balanced. His tweets have been pretty evenly split between those advocating for bombing and those against the idea.

 

@acarvin

 

Stuff like this is why I love Twitter.

 

Stuff like this is why I despise Obama.  He's in so far over his head it isn't funny.  As is Kerry, but Obama's too egotistical to replace Hillary with someone at least as strong.  A decent idea, and they not only let the Russians take the initiative, but don't push it far enough (take the WMD from the rebels as well and demand that Syria recognize Israel's right to exist).

 

When you manage to get both the bulk of the Tea Party and Move On actively opposing you, you're messing up.

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^^^I think we should annihilate Pyongyang from the sky, presuming intelligence assures us there will be no nuclear reprecussions in South Korea. Bomb them until the maniacs are dead, until the military is either dead or utterly surrenders. Then we, South Korea (who leads the movement) and Japan begin a global movement of providing nutrition and social services to the farmers, prisoners, and all other civilian victims of their national tragedy. It would be the biggest humanitarian effort since the Marshall Plan, and I guess at some point we would have to invite China. And I'm sure they would be furious with our invasion, but I doubt anything will come of it due to NK's unique levels of human suffering: it's closer to another Holocaust than anywhere else, and China knows it.

 

But that'll never happen, and I certainly don't support a typical Kosovo or even Gulf War type action.

 

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When you manage to get both the bulk of the Tea Party and Move On actively opposing you, you're messing up.

 

Anything resembling the middle of the political spectrum is a lonely place these days.

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