Is Syria a Ploy?

Section Editor: Malcolm Green

Over the course of one week, the United States has bombed a Syrian government airfield, dropped the largest non-nuclear bomb in history in Afghanistan, and accidently bombed Syrian allies. It appears that the policy of non-intervention and a refusal to participate in regime change has been removed the list of priorities in the Middle East, but why has the White House ventured into this conflict in such an unprecedented way.

Before this week, the U.S had remained adamant that the main priority in Syria was the destruction of ISIS-affiliated encampments and individuals. The first indicator of a change in foreign policy was President Trump’s unorthodox approach to nations that have historically been at odds with American global dominance.

President Trump has opted to maintain firm on his positions and not allow foreign leaders to negotiate from a position wherein the U.S could be perceived as weak. These most recent actions are a signal from the White House to other countries, with China and North Korea being the most probable targets, that America is willing to take action against violations of human rights.

U.S. Destroyer

The airstrikes on Syrian soil were carried out with warning only to the Russians, who were told to leave the base immediately and did so with haste. (Photo Courtesy of Creative Commons)

 

Sean Spicer, the White House’s Press Secretary, claims that strikes occurred due to Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad’s use of chemical weapons against Syrian civilians. Given Syria’s intimate relationship with Russia, China and Iran, President Trump is risking the provocation of some of the world’s most influential nations.

After these strikes took place, America launched the M.O.A.B. (mother of all bombs) on an Afghani cave system, clarifying the stance the White House has taken on utilizing military force to promote peace. This intimidation tactic is routine with President Trump and could work in his favor if other nations are not intent on future war with America.

North Korea, a nation infamously ruled by Kim Jong-un, has taken measures to ensure that America does not follow through with its current threats of similar launches on Korean soil. They have assured that if the launches are followed through with, there will be “ravage brought upon America.”

Syria Bombings

This overhead view of the Syrian airfield provides a basic review of the attack and gives insight into what the strikes were designed to attack. (Photo Courtesy of Creative Commons)

 

War with North Korea and Syria will ensure that America’s role in preventing human rights violations will be much more active and militaristic. A junior at Woodstock High School, Michael Bergeron’s view on this potential shift is that it will “bring much destruction to all countries involved and spread America quite thin.”

The ramifications of American involvement will potentially prevent America from fulfilling our duties elsewhere, and in a period where Russian expansion could conflict with NATO forces, the U.S should remain in a position where resources are not restricted towards combating two of China and Russia’s largest allies.

Iran and Syria are the two most hostile presences in the Middle East that are opposed to the U.S. If America did go to war against Syria, the chances of which are a reality but still hyperbolized in the media, then there would be an immediate and volatile reaction from Iran.

While President Trump’s actions are an interesting and effective means of alerting other nations to America’s hands on role in spreading democracy, it could exacerbate the already tense relations between America and our rivals. If the threats by either side are made a reality, then the world will cease to operate as an amiable whole.

 

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