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Aleppo, How I Love Ya

December 19, 2016

Unlike the recent Libertarian candidate for President of the United States, I do know something about Aleppo. My Armenian grandmother and her sisters fled Aleppo when Muslim terrorists engaged in wholesale murder of Armenian Christians. I found it confusing, therefore, when The New York Times devoted an essay in 2010 to what to do while visiting Damascus.

For me, Damascus raises bitter feelings about how my grandmother’s family was treated.

I should, therefore, want to save civilians in Aleppo from Russian and Syrian government troops with American military, right?

Not quite.

Long before we realized that the invasion of Iraq was a mistake, Marco Rubio appeared before a meeting of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to announce his support for the NATO invasion of Iraq, America’s third invasion of a Muslim country. What was curious was the argument that Sen. Rubio gave on that occasion. He said that the Declaration of Independence affirms that all men are endowed by their Creator with inalienable rights, and when a foreign government denies those rights and threatens its citizens with death, the United States should act to keep that from happening.

Then, about the same time, MSNBC political commentator, former Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell stated on “Morning Joe” that America should always act to stop genocide citing two NATO invasions: Kaddafi’s Libya under President Obama and Kosovo under President Clinton.

That, of course, is a theme right out of a 1960s television series—“have gun, will travel.”

American foreign policy after sixteen years of maladministration by Presidents George W. Bush and President Barack Obama is in shambles. What course we should take is confusing, not the least because we are torn between two views.

One view sees us protecting the helpless and another see us pursuing our national interest.

In that context, is it in our interest  to intervene in Syria to protect the helpless? Or, should we focus on broader issues not the least of which is Russia’s expansion, Iran’s support of terrorist groups and the People’s Republic of China’s moves to control the South China Sea and the Republic of China.

I think the answer is clear:  focus on our national interest, not Aleppo.

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