Here is an email sent out yesterday. So in one sense it is old news, but the analysis remains timely.
Since Delegate Bob Marshall usually doesn’t get into this sort of subject, I at first thought it surprising. However, I think the constitutional issues, what usually gets Marshall’s interest, got his interest here.
America, ISIS and a Third World War?
As Congress prepares to fund military action against ISIS or the Islamic State, America will also attempt to overthrow Syrian President Bashar in the process. The consequences of our overthrowing yet another Middle Eastern leader will cause another vacuum which I believe will simply empower radical Jihadists.
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, who may be criticized on other grounds, has not beheaded Americans or Israelis. Syria has been at peace with Israel since 1967. Syria has not engaged in hostile acts towards the U.S. Yet Syria may become another American military target while we fight ISIS.
Please ask your Congressman and two Senators to ensure that American military action is directed against ISIS and not the overthrow the Syrian president. The House of Representatives is scheduled to vote as early as today ((9/17/14) on a bill to fund the federal government through December 11, 2014 to avoid another federal government shutdown. Because this vote on military action is in the government funding resolution, Congress must vote up or down to both objects in the same bill.
The White House will attempt to “logroll” authority for this war in the Middle East into the Government Funding bill rather than vote on separate measures. This is a tactic which makes it difficult to stop or alter the authority.
The President has failed to tell us that he has a wider agenda than action against ISIS: That is, a war against Syria, Russia’s ally. The Free Syrian Army (FSA) has insisited that they will not join the U.S efforts without a guarantee that the U.S. will commit to toppling the Syrian President.
Language complying with the FSA request comes from Congressman McKeon (CA) for a wider war in the Middle East to provide assistance to the FSA, including bombing Syrian government forces and infrastructure.
The “allies” America will train to fight ISIS (and apparently the present Syrian government) will be trained in Saudi Arabia, home of the Wahhabi version of hard line Islam and home of 15 of 19 of the September 11 hijackers. These fighters are, believe it or not, to be “appropriately vetted.” The so-called Free Syrian Army has already been in close working alliances with al Nusra, al Quada and ISIS in fighting President Assad.
The Obama Administration has already been providing arms and training to Syrian “Arab Spring” rebels and their anti- Assad allies of all stripes. A New York Times (4/28/13) headline reads, “Syrian rebel groups dominated by Islamists.” The Telegraph (3/25/11) reports that Mr. al-Hasidi, who recruited Libyans to fight coalition troops in Iraq, said,
“… his fighters ‘are patriots and good Muslims, not terrorists,’ but added that the ‘members of al-Qaeda are also good Muslims and are fighting against the invader.’”
The International Business Times (9/11/14) reported that beheaded American journalist James Foley, was handed over to ISIS by the “Dawood Bridgade … that was originally aligned with relatively moderate opposition groups such as the Free Syrian Army, but recently pledged allegiance to ISIS. The family of beheaded Steven Sotloff said their son was “sold” to ISIS for up to $50,000 by “the so-called moderate rebels that people want our administration to support.” (CNN 9/10/14)
Lastly, our 2011 NATO-aided Libya intervention, formally rebuked by the House of Representatives, left that country without a stable government. Now, eleven Libyan airliners have been stolen by Jihadists. Three planes could make it to Los Angeles from Burkina Faso. Almost all the rest are capable of flying from West Africa to Washington DC or to Norfolk where we berth aircraft carriers.
How can we possibly “vet” such rebel fighters under wartime conditions where alliances are constantly shifting? Was the Fort Hood Jihadist properly “vetted?” The fog of war makes prudential judgment difficult enough without additional complicating elements present in the Middle East. We must concentrate on destroying ISIS, rather than another government overthrow with could result in more radical leaders taking control of power in Syria.
ISIS, or the “Islamist State” has been making converts from the so-called “moderates.” Conversions are not happening the other way around. The latest CIA estimate upped the number of ISIS fighters from 10,000 to between 20,000 and 31,500. The CNN Report on CIA figures concluded,
“More than 15,000 foreign fighters, including 2,000 Westerners, have gone to Syria … The fighters come from more than 80 countries …” (CNN 9/11/14)
Israel will now have to worry about Congress training and arming additional Syrian “rebels.”
Apparently, quite a few ISIS terrorists have slipped through the CIA vetting process! Yes, we must destroy ISIS, but making the Assad government a co-target with ISIS is not in the interest of lasting peace in the region.
Given Syria’s close alliance with Russia, the ferocity and fervor of ISIS troops which claim murder is their religious duty, the world-wide recruitment of Jihadists to fight against the Infidel, it is no wonder that Pope Francis, apparently the subject of an assassination threat by ISIS, recently lamented while standing next to tombstones of Italian soldiers killed in World War I, that a piecemeal “third world war,” is emerging from Middle East and Eastern Europe conflicts. (The Pope has nevertheless stated, speaking in the context of ISIS attacks, that force can be used to stop “unjust aggression.”)
America’s Founders, when faced with the prospect of war with Great Britain, publicly proclaimed their “firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence.” We must do the same.
Please phone, email or fax your Congressman and Senators Kaine and Warner (contact information here) and urge them to not link America’s effort to destroy ISIS with the overthrow of the Syrian government since Syria has not taken hostile action against the United States or Israel.
If you’d like more background information on this issue check out the full post on my website. Thank you for your continued help!
Here are some links related to the bill Congress passed.
- Vote Tally Count U.S. arming Syrian Rebels UPDATE Senate approves (bunkerville.wordpress.com)
- Congress approves mission to train, arm Syrian rebels (www.foxnews.com)
- Congress Gives Final Approval to Aid Rebels in Fight With ISIS (www.nytimes.com)
Congress has now left town.
- Congress Heads Home After Exhausting Eight Days of Work (www.thewire.com)
- After five-week recess, Congress might cut September session short (thehill.com)
Congress apparently doesn’t want any responsibility for whatever Obama does (or doesn’t do). Yet the Constitution makes Congress responsible for determining the scope of the war, not the President. Congress declares war, not the president.
thehill.com article reports President Obama made the mocking observation that Congress has gone on “vacation.” When Obama spends so much time golfing and on vacation, that is clearly hypocritical.
What is clear is that we have elected too many people who do not take the constitutional responsibilities of their office serious. They enjoy the power and the perks, but not the responsibility.
There is one benefit of the members of Congress going home to their states and districts. We can tell them what we think of the job they are doing.