While it wasn’t unanimous, a strong majority of respondents to Overdrive‘s poll this week on whether the United States should get involved militarily in the Syrian civil war, given evidence of the use of chemical weapons by the government, said no to intervention.
Including those who favored intervention only in a very limited role — either committing no ground troops or with broad multinational support — 86 percent of respondents leaned against military entanglement. Given the news Thursday, Aug. 29, that the United States’ most prominent military ally, Great Britain, would not join the U.S. in any military action there, any U.S. military intervention looked increasingly like a lonely affair.
“Absolutely not!” Ray McClellan wrote in response to a query on our Facebook page of such prospects. “If something is to be done, let the U.N. take care of it. I’m tired of us trying to be the good guy just to end up being the bad guy!”
Many other readers roundly agreed, some going farther in opposing U.S. involvement even in a multinational intervention:
Dan Jones: We have two unfinished wars we’ve been throwing lives and money at for 12 years. Fighting fire with fire only makes a bigger fire.
Dennis Cheney: No! Why start another no-win war?
Jane Blotevogel: So sorry for the innocent people being killed in Syria… However, we have already dug our own grave by overspending, and we cannot afford to again get involved in the Middle East. We have not been attacked. We need to be vigilant with secure borders and military might, police, firefighters, infrastructure repairs, etc. Charity begins at home, and life, liberty and security here should be our first concern.
“Jimgriffis”, commenting at OverdriveOnline.com, brought a lesson from conflicts further back, the Vietnam War, to his commentary opposing intervention and favoring leading by example in more ways than one. “The lesson I learned from Vietnam is war should be fought with complete, absolute and savage brutality. Hence, when the world looks back we realize that we don’t want to do that again. More importantly, our enemies and/or tyrants can really see and believe that when we speak, we mean it. There are real consequences for their actions and ours!”