Cultural Psychology

My Reply to Congresswoman Lois Capp’s (CA-24) Letter on Syria

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Re:  ** Your Response Concerning Syria **

Dear Rep. Lois Capps
California’s 24th US Congressional District

Thank you for informing me of your position on Syria.

May I remind you:

1. That there is a legitimate possibility that the Syrian rebels were responsible for the use of sarin gas in a Damascus suburb recently, with the precise intent of drawing the US into the conflict.  And that the UN investigators have not made their report.  And that it is foolish in the utmost for the Obama administration to commit itself before sufficient data are available with which to draw reliable conclusions.

2. That there is near unanimous consensus that the figure of 1,429 deaths is exaggerated, and that the actual number killed is significantly lower.

3. That even if there is a moral imperative to address the use of nerve gas in Syria, there is *not* a moral imperative for the US to act precipitously and unilaterally.  Indeed, there *is* a moral imperative to respond in a responsible way, namely by dealing with the problem as one member of a community of nations.

4. There are far worse humanitarian calamities, such as mass starvation, which the US government pays no attention to. And that this double-standard reveals that President Obama is using the recent sarin gas event as a pretext for military intervention motivated for other reasons.

5. That in any case there is no such thing as a limited military action. Mission creep is a brute fact.  Once released, there is no calling back the dogs of war, and one would be both extremely naive and ignorant of history to believe otherwise.


John Uebersax


Written by John Uebersax

September 11, 2013 at 12:47 am

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