The dogs of war are straining at the leash once again. Senator John McCain, who never met a military intervention he didn’t like, is now calling for the United States to begin bombing Syria.
Saying that “the time has come for a new policy in Syria,” McCain called Monday for the United States to “lead an international effort to protect key population centers in Syria, especially in the north, through airstrikes on Assad's forces.” Lest anybody mistake his intent, the Arizona senator and one-time presidential aspirant further clarified that “this will require the United States to suppress enemy air defense in at least part of the country,” with the ultimate goal of U.S. airstrikes being “to establish and defend safe havens in Syria” where enemies of the Assad regime “can organize and plan their political and military activities.”
Given the situation in Syria, McCain averred, there is no longer any question of whether foreign interests will intervene to support the Syrian opposition. The only question is whether the United States will have a stake in shaping post-Assad Syria:
Some kind of intervention will happen, with us or without us. So the real question for U.S. policy is whether we will participate in this next phase of the conflict in Syria, and thereby increase our ability to shape an outcome that is beneficial to the Syrian people, and to us. I believe we must. However, it is not clear that the present policy can succeed. If Assad manages to cling to power — or even if he manages to sustain his slaughter for months to come, with all of the human and geopolitical costs that entails — it would be a strategic and moral defeat for the United States. We cannot, we must not, allow this to happen.
Click here to read the entire article.
Photo of Senator John McCain: AP Images