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The Other Atrocities In Syria

The fighting in Syria has created a “humanitarian crisis of epic proportions,” says U.S. Representative Michael McCaul, Chair of the Homeland Security Committee in the U.S. House of Representatives. McCaul asserts that the surge of refugees into Europe is due to “the inability to remove Assad from power and also the rise of ISIS. That’s why these refugees are fleeing.”

There is no doubt that many of the refugees from Syria and and Iraq are fleeing because of the rise of the Islamic State (ISIS), which was enabled by the botched U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003. The Islamic State has been responsible for terrible atrocities, such as campaigns of ethnic cleansing that lead entire towns of people to flee for their lives.

On the other hand, according to a new Amnesty International report, some of the groups that Michael McCaul wants the United States to send more money and weapons to have also been committing terrible atrocities, such as campaigns of ethnic cleansing that lead to entire towns of people to flee for their lives. Specifically, the Partiya Yekîtiya Demokrat, a Kurdish group that is part of a coalition that is being supported by the U.S. government, has been forcing non-Kurds to become refugees, demolishing entire villages, and threatening non-combatant villagers if they do not leave. The Partiya Yekîtiya Demokrat has been reported to tell peaceful villagers that U.S. aircraft will be called in to bomb them in their homes if they do not leave.

The Islamic State is certainly responsible for much of the refugee crisis. However, Michael McCaul is being dishonest when he suggests that the Islamic State is the only reason refugees are fleeing Syria and Iraq. In fact, Representative McCaul’s plans to increase shipments of weapons and money to militant groups allied with the U.S. in the region is likely to make the crisis worse, increasing rather than decreasing the number of refugees leaving the area.

This mess was started years ago when saber-rattling pro-war members of Congress began depicting one group in Iraq as the epitome of evil, and that group’s opponents as noble “freedom fighters”. Now, those same politicians are describing the “freedom fighters” as the epitome of evil, and they’ve picked out new armed groups to be celebrated as “freedom fighters”.

Their policy of pumping weapons and money into the region, along with U.S. military power, has been a terrible failure. We must deal with the mess that American policy has created in Iraq and Syria, but we must not do so by repeating the failed policies of the past.

4 thoughts on “The Other Atrocities In Syria”

  1. Dave says:

    Amen.

  2. Quinton Underwood says:

    Well, Well, Mr. Peregrin Wood,
    Let me see if I can paint the picture as you would have it. First, the year 2003 has nothing to do with this
    OBAMA/Dems. debacle. This is all in their lap. So, now it look lack your thoughts are, we should bring all Americans home, close all offices, leave no Americans anywhere. O K? Then we just melt down all our arms and
    sit down on our fist and lean back on our thumbs and wait for the ASIS and all the other Muslim groups to come
    and beat us, kill us, take our wives, daughters, and rape and kill them also.

    “I make a living by what I get, I make a life by what I give.”

    1. Dave says:

      Quinton, there is no doubt about Peregrin’s pacifism, but his post today is about what a fouled up mess we have made of foreign policy in the Middle East. One could go back to Bush, or Clinton, Bush 41, Reagan or Carter to find bad policy there. The current president wants to involve our military once again in a losing battle for control of a country we have no business being in. Obama wants to depose Assad; Carter stood by while the Shah was deposed and how did that work out for Iran? Ayatollah ring a bell? Re-read the post. Re-read your history. The ME is a cesspool created by centuries of Islamic tribal rivalries, British, UN, U.S. policy, oil-thirsty nations, and current ignorance of what’s really going on.

      Unlike Peregrin, I believe war is a good thing at times, but it needs to be used to protect our families and our country. There is no current American policy in the Middle East that does this, and this post acknowledges some reasons for the failure.

  3. Quinton Underwood says:

    Dave,
    You are basically right and in what you pointed out, it only takes a trip back in history to see this. But that does not take care of the problem. The Problem, we go into a country fight a war, get our men killed, but we win the war and then we leave, and bam a radical force comes during the weakness and starts another conflict.
    This should not be. When a country needs to be bailed out we should say O K, but when it is over we are going to share in the prizes, we are not leaving empty handed…………….WE ARE NOT DOING THIS AND NEVER HAVE ! ! !

    “I make a living by what I get, I make a life by what I give?”

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