The Stupidity Of Chemical Weapons As Justification To Attack Syria

BY Herschel Smith
2 years, 10 months ago

So let’s deal with objections right up front.  If chemical weapons aren’t adequate justification to attack Syria, then they weren’t justification to attack Iraq either.  Right.  And I didn’t agree with or support Operation Iraqi Freedom Phase I, while I did support OIF II and OIF III because I watched as 80-100 jihadists per month crossed the Syrian and Jordanian borders to fight us inside of Iraq, and because leaving would have had catastrophic consequences once the eggs were broken.  Briefly said, once there we had to stay and finish the job, however horrible it was.

But the horror of chemical weapons is being trotted out as justification for degrading Syrian capability to make those weapons, or deliver those weapons, or something.  It isn’t clear.  How that horror is different from what preceded it, I wonder?  Bashar Hafez al-Assad and his father before him were and are brutal dictators who rule by the use of fear.  Torture, beheadings, imprisonment of political opponents, assassinations and all manner of horror has been perpetrated on the Syrian people for many years.

And even now, anti-regime terrorists in Syria (our would-be allies) are actively working their horror (via Mike Vanderboegh).

Al-Qaeda linked terrorists in Syria have beheaded all 24 Syrian passengers traveling from Tartus to Ras al-Ain in northeast of Syria, among them a mother and a 40-days old infant.

Gunmen from the terrorist Islamic State of Iraq and Levant stopped the bus on the road in Talkalakh and killed everyone before setting the bus on fire.

According to media reports, the attack was carried out because the passengers who were from three different villages in Ras al-Ain, supported anti-terrorist Kurdish groups which were formed recently to defend Kurdish population against anti-Syria terrorists.

Bodies of a mother and her 40-days infant were also seen among the dead, which were recognized by their relatives.

So what about chemical weapons?  Michael Fumento gives us the straight scoop in a different context, i.e., the chlorine attacks in Fallujah, Iraq, in the spring of 2007.

Insurgents launched three more chlorine truck attacks in Al Anbar province on March 17, killing two and sickening an additional 350. Is this a disturbing new trend? No. Had those trucks been filled with high explosives, each could have killed around 100 people. Instead, combined, they killed two. Probably all those sickened will recover with little or no lasting damage, as opposed to losing limbs and eyes. Chemicals have never lived up to their reputation as weapons.

That’s why even though the Germans invented Sarin gas, which is vastly more deadly than chlorine, they decided not to use it. Hitler didn’t forego its use because he was a nice guy. Rather, his generals convinced him that high explosives are far more effective in causing deaths, not to mention that all the poison gas in the world can’t destroy material objects. That said, gas is a good terror weapon because most people have a more innate terror of being gassed than of being blown up or shot. But that’s primarily or exclusively because gas is such a rare threat. The more the terrorists use chlorine, the less the terror effect will be.

I remember this vividly since my son was deployed in Fallujah in 2007.  When the Marines finished taking over the industrial area of Fallujah from al Qaeda in the summer of 2007, they found many thousands of gallons of chlorine, all unused – unused because it was completely, tactically ineffective.  And I am on the record concurring with Michael’s assessment here and here.

If your desire is tactical effectiveness, you use conventional ordnance.  In other words, as horrible as it sounds, you blow people and things up.  And it is horrible, just as horrible as killing far fewer of them with chemical weapons.  And it is just as horrible as your supposed allies in Syria shooting and/or burning infants to death.

I have my own views of the administration’s case (or lack thereof) for any strategic value in Syria, but whatever else one may believe about the situation, the use of chemical weapons as justification for military action is either ignorant or disingenuous.

  • Mark Matis

    It ain’t the Syrian government using it. And the Muslim in Chief and all his toadies damn well know it.

  • Paul B

    The problem is our own president and his hidden objective. I don’t know what they have on him, but we are being black mailed into war. What kills me is McCain is on board as well.

    I don’t know what sort of incestuous snake pit Washington has become but I am all for moving the capital.

  • http://SANITY Tom Pearson

    Back during the 96 some hours of Desert Storm, our Arab Muslim “allies” went from the goal of getting rid of Saadam at the start to the Infidels (the USA) are killing our Muslim brothers (the supposedly hated retreating Republican Guard),causing the attack to come to a skreeching halt and letting the Republician Guard excape to cause trouble later. That was a quick change from enemy to brother but in the Muslim belief, it is all of them united as brothers against all others (us the infidels). OK for a Muslim to slaughter someone from anothe sect of the faith but horror of horrors that is not allowed to have a infidel kill a “brother” muslim no matter how bad that “brother” was/is. This is a no winner for the West (us) as no matter what we do we will be ultimately wrong in the eyes of the Muslim world’s peoples as we are infidels.

  • Mark Matis

    There’s a fairly quick solution to that problem, Tom Pearson, but this country’s “leadership” has not had the guts to use it since WWII. Not that such differences might have had anything to do with why this country has not won a war since then.

    Just exactly what do you think would have happened to the German civilians in the area had a US soldier been attacked after the war ended? Contrast that to Korea, Viet Nam, Iraq I, Iraq II, Afghanistan…

    And then contrast THOSE Rules of Engagement to the ones this country’s “Law Enforcement” observe when dealing with Mere Citizens…

  • tjbbpgobIII

    “Just exactly what do you think would have happened to the German civilians in the area had a US soldier been attacked after the war ended”?

    This actually happened in Germany after the war. A group of former SS soldiers (I don’t know if the regular army was involved) began guerilla activities against civilians and allied soldiers. It was not tolerated any more than it should be today. Our occupation troops did their duty, and by occupation troops, I mean the left over veterans, not the replacement troops who didn’t arrive until it was all over. Those soldiers did more bad than good. I got all this from a brother-in-law whop didn’t have enough points to come home.

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    Paul B….”move the capitol” ? That’s your solution to the decay and corruption by our ruling elites ?

    How about trying all 535, the Nine and the “One” for treason and then give them the hemp necktie they all richly deserve ?

    The problem is not geographical.

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  • Mark Matis

    I hate to break this to you, Dan III, but it REALLY ain’t geographical because it is not even REMOTELY confined to those 535, the Nine, and The Won, but is instead rampant across this entire country at ALL levels of government.

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This article is filed under the category(s) Syria and was published September 3rd, 2013 by Herschel Smith.

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