Las Vegas Sun

July 24, 2014

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Letter to the editor:

U.S. must be more careful who we arm

I’m concerned about arming Syrian rebels.

First, Syria never signed the treaty outlawing the use of chemical weapons. The reason being used by the U.S. is tenuous at best; Syria used chemical weapons once, in a small amount, and it was not a nuclear attack. And, if this reasoning is used to weaponize rebels, then it should make the former U.S. regime liable for prosecution under the International Criminal Courts Treaty, which President Bill Clinton fostered, and the U.S. did not sign. We would be setting a precedent.

Second, look at our record of arming rebels. Of course, it was illegal, but Iran-Contra fostered such noble causes as Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden. That worked out well, didn’t it? Of course, bin Laden was against Russia, but teaching him our ways blew up in our faces.

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  1. I find this subject a very difficult one. Almost any government and any opposition group that face off against one another are funded, supported and provided weapons by 'someone'. If we pick a side, today's ally may very well be tomorrows enemy. If we stay out and stay neutral, we allow 'others' to dictate outcomes that may not be in our interests and may indeed directly threaten us. I think this must be one of the toughest calls our Presidents and our Congresses must make.

    Michael

  2. Ms. Miner you should be concerned. Almost every single time we've armed a group to control or overthrow their government we were bitten right on the arse. Dictators were established with our help. Radicals right wing groups were established with our help. Sectarian warfare was established with our help. And in the end? We faced those groups we aided having those very same weapons turned on us.

    It's time we nation build here at home and take care of our own.

  3. "I'm concerned about arming Syrian rebels."

    Miner -- you should be. But I'm asking the obvious question you didn't -- how is this not supporting terrorism in Syria?

    "We have long since made clear that a state of war is not a blank check . . . " -- Hamdi v. Rumsfeld, 542 U. S. 507, 536 (2004)

  4. I said it then; I say it now: don't arm Muslim extremists. Let whacko Muslim extremists kill each other off. While they are busy killing each other, they are not killing us. They take to the streets in faux anger when a page is torn from the Koran but seem to have no problem with the bombing of Mosques with lots of Korans and worshippers inside, the stoning to death of women, or suicide bombers detonating themselves in open air markets, scattering body parts of innocent shoppers over the landscape.

  5. "Syrian rebels?" How can we be at least 50% certain that those "rebels" aren't just gangs of thugs with guns? After all, one of their leaders is a self-proclaimed cannibal.

    But then, how can we be at least 50% certain that the Syrian "Government Forces" aren't just another gang of thugs with guns? After all they are claimed to have gassed their own citizens.

    A better idea - why not protect the surrounding countries from an overflow of violence by EITHER side?

  6. We're broke and unable to feed our seniors yet Obama has the spare change to send $Billions to Syria? We've sent more than $60B to Egypt since asking them to be our friend and see how they treat us. Now Egypt has enough of an economy and all our weapons....AND they call us their enemy.