Support For Syrian Intervention Coming From Unlikely Sources
British Prime Minister David Cameron was unable to gain a consensus among Parliamentarians, he maintained there remained a need for a “robust response” to Syria’s alleged use of chemical weapons. And part of that response may come from France, which has said it will support the US if President Obama decides to act independent of UN authority.
A “Liberal Case” For Intervention?
France is backing military action. Now, a columnist from the liberal Guardian newspaper is as well.
Michael Cohen says the “liberal” justification for acting in Syria lies in the “evolving set of global norms” that exist to prevent war. “International treaties and conventions along with an evolving set of global norms have helped to prevent war and limit their deadliness. In that constant process of “refinement” lays the single best justification for President Obama to launch a military strike against Syria for its recent taboo-shattering use of chemical weapons against its own people,” he writes.
He acknowledges it “won’t fully stop the bloodletting in Syria,” but would send a message to Assad and other dictators about the consequences of using chemical weapons.
Another surprising supporter of military intervention is the left-leaning Economist magazine, which declared that while “no option is perfect,” that President Obama should take firm action.
“If the West tolerates such a blatant war crime, Mr. Assad will feel even freer to use chemical weapons. He had after all stepped across Mr. Obama’s “red line” several times by using these weapons on a smaller scale—and found that Mr. Obama and his allies blinked. An American threat, especially over WMD, must count for something: it is hard to see how Mr. Obama can eat his words without the superpower losing credibility with the likes of Iran and North Korea,” the newspaper says in an editorial.
Rick Pildes of Lawfare.com, however, raises questions about the legality of using a “multi-lateral military force for humanitarian intervention.”
“Yet if we don’t ask hard questions about these kind of legal arguments, we can much too easily avoid the underlying reality that we sometimes face profound conflicts between law and morality/political judgment — particularly in the international arena,” Pildes says.