LIVE CHAT: Crisis in Syria
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LIVE CHAT: Crisis in Syria

Join Kent State University's assistant professor of political science Joshua Stacher and share your thoughts on the crisis in Syria.

  • It is not clear re the economic effects. But of course, the single biggest drain on the economy in teh 2000s was the Iraq war. At its peak it cost the US $2.5Billon a week. The US is a long way from that type of involvement in Syria but military action is a slippery slope.
  • Why are we intervening at all, as this is classified as a civil war? Doesn't the US have policies about choosing sides durong civil wars?
  • Have we done anything over there of any value? Can we with a flawed religion that pits them against each other. This has been going on since the crusades and there is no end in site. Let them figure it out until there is no more ammunition left.
  • This is classified as a civil war. The US gets involved in civil wars if it coincides with our national interests. The US national security interests dominate thinking about the Middle East. Syria has been a playground for lots of regional and international powers - US is playing vis-a-vis those players much more than an outright concern over the lives of ordinary Syrians.
  • The US has not done much of any lasting value in the ME short of supporting autocratic governments and selling lots and lots of military hardware (generating billions in profits for the US arms industry). Religion has little to do with this. Conflicts are politically constructed. The overall rule in the Middle East is that coexistence among different religious groups is the norm rather than conflict. Yet, when the state weakens and conflict ensures, entrepreneurs
    play on religion to generate more and more conflict.
  • I have not heard anything about the Jihadists desire for global war and their clear willingness to strap bombs onto children and send them into a crowded market who
  • would have no problem with using chemical weapons on innocent people and make it look like it was the Syrian government.
  • Well. Those types of bombers have not been that prevalent in the Syrian civil war. This is not to say it cannot happen. But if you are worried about jihadis then you more or less end up supporting the regime of al-Asad. The problem is there are no good options in Syria.
  • It's not clear to me which side we should be on. The rebels are infiltrated win AlQada and Muslim extremists. As far as I can tell they are the bigger threat to us. Up til now Assad hes protected the Christians. Looked at what has happened to the Christians/Colts in Egypt
  • This is also why I am advocating we see a full report with a completed investigation and UN inspections. If the US gov wants to use the military, it needs to be 100% proved who is doing what with what weapons.
  • How much longer are we going to keep deluding everyone. After all the resources we have put in to those countries, why can't we learn that THEY do not want to change, THEY do not want nor need out help (?). If they did they would be doing the right things and treating their people humanely. I cannot understand how they can run around like crazies, stoning, beating, killing each other and then fall all over the dead sobbing and moaning over the deaths.
  • I am not sure we need to view Syria like a football match. Perhaps, there is no side to support. The fact that there are over 1000 militias should alert us to complexity of the situation. I would actually argue for a resolution to the conflict diplomatically and intervening to ease the plight of the internal and externally displaced population (3million people). Military force is the last resort we should be considering.
  • Isaiah 17:1, The burden of Damascus. Behold Damascus is taken away from being a city and it shall be a ruinous heap. This is a future Bible prophecy. Could we be looking at this possibility, today?
  • The Middle East is not a primitive place. It is a place that has been produced by the forces of globalization since the days of colonialism. We cannot separate the world into boxes. The world is interconnected and so there is no WE and THEY. The solution is figuring out how to end the conflict before more people die. As a example, Saddam Hussein killed around 250K people in 25 years in power. After the US-led invasion, over a million people died because of the violence introduced by military intervention. While 100K have died in Syria, this number could escalate dramatically if new actors are introduced.
  • I am not familiar with biblical passages nor do I look to such text to explain political problems or contemporary
    conflicts which humans started. This applies to the case of Syria now.
  • We can intellectualize this conflict and debate its unknown consequences until we are blue in the face but let me ask a question or two before forming an opinion. Have you watched the video’s with an open mind that perhaps they might be authentic? Did you see the babies convulsing and foaming at the mouth? Do you honestly think the US would engage or even entertain the idea of militaristic intervention if they thought for one second that the videos were not in fact ‘real’? What if your mother was trapped in Syria? Your brother? What if you were there? Would you not pray to whatever God, that someone with a “moral compass” would come to your aid by whatever means necessary? Those people need our help, just as so many other victims of atrocities needed our help in the past. What if we never stepped foot in Europe during WWII? What then? Perhaps we should have asked for even more proof before believing that millions of Jews and others were being slaughtered by a monster? The people of Syria are just that ‘people’, just like you and I are. The only difference, they were not so fortunate to have been born in a free nation. Please consider the people. Trust me, the common person wants nothing more than to have peace and feel safe. Right now, they need our help.
  • My hope was that President Obama would have admitted sticking his foot in his mouth with his red line comment and not allowing the nation to be drawn in to a civil war from which the US cannot come out well. I cannot understand why a foreign government is to become involved with a civil war of another nation. Lastly, I may not be as familiar with bible prophecy as Lickster, but I do believe the bible is a resource that should not be ignored
  • That is a thoughtful comment Peace. I appreciate it. I lived in Syria and have many friends trapped in that country. They have labored under autocracy for decades and many people in free countries could have cared less. What happene
    d to those victims is unspeakable. But we have to think carefully about how to respond. It is always moments like this when people say that "something needs done". A military strike is dramatic and will look like something. However it will only be a brief break in that conflict. It will not end it and it will not change it. Military interventions aren't humanitarian. They only change the dynamic of the conflict. The war will continue. If we care about the population, press your politicians to ease the humanitarian crises of refugees that has been going on since march 2011
  • Thanks to all for participating in our web chat tonight. - Janet
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