September 6, 2013

Another View: U.S. has more choices on Syria than Nemitz presents to readers

Though the course of action is perceived as 'bomb Syria or do nothing,' there is a middle ground.

By KELLEY McDANIEL

Re: Bill Nemitz's column "Syrian images hang over peace protest" (Sept. 1): "Bomb Syria or do nothing" is a false dichotomy. Violence in Syria began to escalate after Britain and France pressured the European Union to lift its arms embargo; then Russia promised to provide more weapons to the Syrian government.

The U.S. needs to support the U.N. Security Council's pursuit of justice, not take matters into our own hands.

The chemical attack on Damascus needs to be investigated, and whoever is guilty needs to be tried and punished by the U.N.

U.S. military strikes against Syria will hurt the Syrian people more and exacerbate the area's political polarization as well as contribute to greater political instability in the Middle East. U.S. military strikes against Syria will not help end Syria's civil war or aid the region's refugee crisis.

The U.S. should support the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and the World Health Organization in their investigation of the chemical attack and support international efforts to provide relief and aid to the Syrian people from organizations like Doctors Without Borders.

Then the U.S. should help facilitate diplomatic negotiations that include Russia and Iran and help bring an end to Syria's civil war.

Do that for the children.

Kelley McDaniel is a resident of Portland.

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