Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Mitt Romney's Calls For Arming Syrian Rebels Are Misguided and Dangerous
Policy Mic ^ | June 4, 2012 | Curt Ventresca

Posted on 06/07/2012 4:26:18 AM PDT by Colonel Kangaroo

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney has called on the United States to begin arming the Syrian opposition after the most recent massacre carried out by the Assad government. Other supporters of U.S. involvement included Senators John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Joe Lieberman (R-Conn.).

Romney used the recent murder of Syrian dissidents as an opportunity to make President Obama look weak on foreign policy. "President Obama's lack of leadership has resulted in a policy of paralysis that has watched Assad slaughter 10,000 individuals," he said.

The former governor of Massachusets also pushed for the U.S. to step up pressure on Russia to stop arming the Assad regime. "We should increase pressure on Russia to cease selling arms to the Syrian government and to end its obstruction at the United Nations. And we should work with partners to arm the opposition so they can defend themselves."

McCain and Lieberman also took very critical stances on what they see as Obama’s weak response to the Syrian crisis. McCain said he was “embarrassed” at the lack of American response to the ongoing violence against dissidents by the Assad regime.

Lieberman also took a critical view of Russia and its decision to continue arming Assad saying “It is not a fair fight that Russian arms continue to flow into Syria and obviously the opposition is not prepared to take on (President) Bashar Al-Assad from the brutal murders, rape and torture that continue to be Bashar’s instrument of trying to maintain control of Syria.”

These hawkish takes on Syria oversimplify the Syrian situation and don’t take into account the possible effects of inserting U.S. arms into the already violent situation. U.S.'s involvement could have far reaching consequences by inflaming Sunni and Shiite tensions in the region and helping to legitimize Assad’s claims that the rebellion is fuelled by international forces.

Former Secretary of State Leonid Brezinski had a much more informed and rational take on the situation. Having been the first to arm the Mujahedin in Afghanistan while serving under the Carter Administration, perhaps he has a better understanding of the unpredictable effects of arming such an opposition group.

“It is not as horrible or as dramatic as it is portrayed. If you look at the world in recent years, the horrible war in Sri Lanka, the killings in Rwanda, and the deaths in Libya and so forth. You know, let’s have a sense of proportion here.

This is a neurological part of the world in which all of a sudden if we are not intelligent about it we can create a nexus between a difficult internal problem which has not assumed huge proportions yet and a regional problem and a global problem which involves our relationships with the other major powers, particularly Russia, but also the negotiations with Iran over the nuclear problem.”

U.S.'s involvement does not guarantee democracy or a U.S.-friendly outcome either. Former CIA agent and Middle East expert Michael Scheuer expressed doubts that democracy would emerge from any of the Arab Spring revolutions and warned against U.S. involvement. Many feel arming opposition groups in uprisings like this will simply help to trade despotism for more despotism.

The White House, the only actor with actual responsibility over this decision, has adopted a rational and cautious approach to Syria, anticipating the potential for a disaster if the U.S. were to become involved. "There are elements to the Syrian opposition that do not share the democratic ideas of the broad Syrian people who are not necessarily friends of the United States," White House spokesman Jay Carney said.

Share on Facebook

TOPICS: Foreign Affairs
Is Romney really that much of a fan of the Muslim Brotherhood to risk American well-being to put them into power? If the nation thinks Mitt is another unrestrained Middle East crusader, Obama is as good as reelected.
1 posted on 06/07/2012 4:26:35 AM PDT by Colonel Kangaroo
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

The author of this piece must have confused Zbigniew Brzezinski with Leonid Brezhnev. And Brzezinski was Carter’s security advisor, not sec. of state.

2 posted on 06/07/2012 4:32:20 AM PDT by Colonel Kangaroo
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Colonel Kangaroo

Leonid is easier to spell than Zbigniew.

3 posted on 06/07/2012 4:58:05 AM PDT by Blennos
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Colonel Kangaroo

Kinda like the Iran/Iraq war of yesteryear.
When the bad guys fight the bad guys, the LEAST we can do is keep the sides even and WELL-SUPPLIED with arms and ammunition.

4 posted on 06/07/2012 5:04:11 AM PDT by Flintlock (THE TRUTH: It's the new hate speech..)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Colonel Kangaroo
The author got the name wrong and he probably used the wrong "wise old realist"

A better choice would have been Henry Kissinger because of Kissinger's editorial on Syria published in WaPo last week, which has drawn much criticism from the neocons.

The issue is twofold.

First, should the US intervene in Syria?
Second, if the US does intervene, should she do so unilaterally?

5 posted on 06/07/2012 5:06:58 AM PDT by Ben Ficklin
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Ben Ficklin

Why should the USA intervene? Assad is killing Muslims - what is the downside to that?

6 posted on 06/07/2012 5:16:11 AM PDT by GladesGuru (In a society predicated upon freedom, it is necessary to examine principles."...the public interest)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: GladesGuru
"Why should the USA intervene?"

Its about foreign policy doctrine and you have to look at 3 groups.

NeoCon Republicans and Liberal Interventionist Democrats are Idealists in that they both advocate for humanitarianism and nation building in our foreign policy. But those two differ in that the Liberal Interventionists are multilateralists and the NeoCons are unilateralists.

The Realists are that, realists. Humanitarianism and nation building should not be part of US foreign policy. The US should intervene only if it is in the US's interest. And if the US does intervene it should conform to the Powell Doctrine, which identifies all the criteria that should be met before the US intervenes.

So you need to look at this in regard to both Libya and Syria.

In Libya, the NeoCon Rebublicans immediately began calling for Obama to intervene and the Realists told Obama not to intervene. Then the Liberal Interventionist Dems organized a multilateral agreement with other nations and Obama intervened. The NeoCons praised Obama for intervening but criticised him for waiting on the multilateral agreement and "leading from behind". Some of the hardcore NeoCons like John Bolton criticized Obama for not putting boots on the ground in Libya.

Now, in Syria, the NeoCons are calling to intervene unilaterally because there is no multilateral agreement but the Liberal Interventionists are not on board

7 posted on 06/07/2012 5:46:55 AM PDT by Ben Ficklin
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: Colonel Kangaroo
It appears Mittens is getting the same kind and type of misguided, naive and dare I suggest "Deceitful?" advice as did Boosh.

There are many who have been hoodwinked as to the danger and intent of the Muslim Brotherhood and supported the "Arab Spring."

At least their "misunderstanding" was that of not being informed as opposed to our Islamic-Jihadist-Appeaser/Supporter In Chief who is well aware of that which he was doing by helping overthrow Mubarak and Gadaffi.

Somehow, somewhere, I see the hand of GROVER NORQUIST here:



His influence peddling (going back to George Bush) and enabling has had a detrimental affect and allowed the Muslim Brotherdhood to gain a foothold in the Conservative Movement and reaches to the highest levels of Gov't to include the White House, DHS, DOJ and Dept of Defense....

Making this bottom-feeding, snake and charlatan one of the most despicable (AND DANGEROUS) scumbags in the US at the present time....

And its about time that "we" Freepers do something about it/him.


8 posted on 06/07/2012 5:49:29 AM PDT by Conservative Vermont Vet (l)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Colonel Kangaroo
And where does the Shooming POT-US stand?

Why he stands on the gold course, of course!

Obama’s presidential record: 3 years, 100 rounds of golf

9 posted on 06/07/2012 5:59:10 AM PDT by TexasCajun
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: GladesGuru
Why should the USA intervene? Assad is killing Muslims - what is the downside to that?

Excellent post!

The internal affairs of another country are usually no concern of ours. What affect on OUR national security does Assad killing a few rebels have? Absolutely none! In fact, supporting the rebels is contrary to our national security. The last thing we need is yet another islamic terrorist nation in the mideast.

10 posted on 06/07/2012 6:15:59 AM PDT by John O (God Save America (Please))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: Colonel Kangaroo

Sorry, i couldn’t get any farther in this article than “Joe Lieberman (R-Conn.).

11 posted on 06/07/2012 6:18:28 AM PDT by Senior Chief (Here I am, right where I left myself.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Senior Chief

I’m thinking Republican Lieberman must be kin to former Secretary of State Leonid Brezinski.

12 posted on 06/07/2012 6:21:00 AM PDT by Colonel Kangaroo
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: Colonel Kangaroo

Syria or Libya it does not matter. You have a crazy insane corrupt regime fighting with crazy insane radical rebels. No matter who wins nothing will change. The only thing that these people can agree on is that someone else i.e. the USA is the cause of all their woes.

13 posted on 06/07/2012 6:32:09 AM PDT by BobinIL
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Colonel Kangaroo

I am totally against interfering in these middle-east conflicts in any way.

The situation is way too murky over there and today’s rebels become tomorrow’s tyrants very quickly.

Mitt is probably attempting (if he really took this stance) to play on the well-known sympathy of Americans for underdogs and for abused people everywhere.

It’s who we are.

But even though I’m totally against this stance, I still trust Romney a thousand times more than Obama on both foreign and domestic policy.

14 posted on 06/07/2012 6:41:45 AM PDT by altura
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: BobinIL

I agree.

And, by the way, could we grow up?

I mean give up all the stupid corruption of names and the use of the term ‘bots.’ It’s old, insulting and boring.

Also giving derrogatory nicknames such as Booosh, or Mittens is getting really trite.

15 posted on 06/07/2012 6:47:07 AM PDT by altura
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: John O; GladesGuru

While they’re busy killing each other, they’re not plotting to kill us.

16 posted on 06/07/2012 7:26:48 AM PDT by Jess79
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: Colonel Kangaroo

The so called war against jihad is a lie. By their actions and words, our citizens of the world elitists love violent Islam. Non-Muslim Americans are the terrorists they are at war with.

17 posted on 06/07/2012 7:30:52 AM PDT by SaraJohnson
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794 is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson