These three powerful men—David Cameron, John Kerry, and François Hollande—are among many showing stupidity in intervening in Syria. (Source: Reuters)
As investigations continue into who caused the chemical weapons strike in Damascus, Syria last week, many key figures in the West have already jumped the gun and claim that Bashar al-Assad's regime were the ones responsible. Given the chemical weapons attacks happened in the early morning hours of August 21, during a period of intense fighting between regime forces and rebels in the Free Syrian Army, there is no definitive proof at the moment of the real perpetrators of this darkest moment in the Syrian Civil War. However, some are undeterred, and are itching to use the Damascus attacks as an excuse to bring Western militaries into the civil war as a display of "humanitarian intervention." This stupid belief comes despite the fact that Syria has big allies in Russia and Iran, boasts a far more sophisticated military that will cause the war to drag on, and that the idea of an intervention is extremely unpopular. Let us look at 5 particular idiots who want to get their hands on Syria:
1. John Kerry
Secretary of State John Kerry, despite making wonderful progress in talks between Israel and Palestine, has only demonstrated his hawkish tendencies with leading the case for America intervening. Kerry called the Damascus attack a "moral obscenity," and that he and the President believes there should be some accountability. This is, unfortunately, par for the course with Kerry: He did, after all, vote to intervene in the Iraq War before he infamously "flip-flopped" on the subject during the 2004 presidential campaign. His predecessor would not be much better, either: Hilary Clinton, as Secretary of State, led the intervention in Libya, after all.
2. The British government
British Prime Minister David Cameron has called the Damascus attacks "morally indefensible," and believes that the United Kingdom has a responsibility to intervene, even without a mandate from the United Nations Security Council. In a moment reminiscent of Blair's intervention in Iraq, Cameron has recalled Parliament during what is supposed to be a vacation month to discuss the matter. Cameron currently faces an populace very unhappy with his handling of the economy, and his party's coalition partner, led by Nick Clegg, have long been hostile to foreign intervention. To think that Cameron would rally the public into even a limited intervention after the unpopular failure of the Iraq War is beyond wishful thinking, it is thoughtless stupidity.
3. The French government
David Cameron has a friend in French president François Hollande in intervening in Syria. Hollande told government officials that "France is ready to punish" Syria for its alleged role in the Damascus attacks. After leading an operation into Mali earlier in 2013, Hollande is riding off a personal high from being able to lead a military to supposed success without having to rely on Western partners such as the U.S. and NATO. However, unlike the ragtag-yet-fierce Tuareg Islamists that the French Army faced in Mali, the enemies in Syria are an actual military, with a readiness that requires massive numbers to overcome. No ego boosting can overcome that issue.
4. The American press
For obvious reasons, the main one being able to sell papers to what few people left that read them, the American press has offered full-throated support for an intervention in Syria. The two major national newspapers, the New York Times and the Washington Post, both want Assad punished for his actions. The New York Times' absurd reasoning has less to do with actually bringing down was is admittedly a terrible regime and more about holding President Obama accountable for his ridiculous "red lines" promise last year, which meant that the country would intervene in the event chemical weapons are used. The Washington Post, on the other hand, just wants a ground invasion outright for the purpose of creating a "safe zone for rebels" and civilians. A safe zone? How does that even make sense?
5. Neoconservatives (especially those that love Israel)
Granted, neoconservatives have always wanted to pick fights with everyone they seem to meet that's foreign. That much of their stupidity we learned from the run-up to the Iraq War. But their drum-beating has picked up significantly over Syria after many years being beaten back by conventional wisdom and common sense. The primary reason? Israel, Syria's neighbor who currently controls a chunk of their land, the Golan Heights. While there has been spillover of the war, it has only occurred in Lebanon, the two nations' neighbor and sometimes-colony. Still, neoconservatives have it in their heads that Assad will somehow use this opportunity of Western showmanship to settle accounts on the Golan Heights with America's ally. You don't say? In fairness, despite some early preemptive airstrikes, Israel has stayed out of the conflict, relishing the fact that its personal rival Hamas is scrambling following its withdrawal of support for the Assad regime and Damascus exodus, though they have unfortunately acknowledged that they may have to become involved, too.