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What To Do In Syria? Where Missouri Stands In Congress

We're finding out where the St. Louis-area's congressional delegation stands on the prospect of using force in Syria.

Patch is taking the pulse of the members of Congress representing the St. Louis area as lawmakers get ready to consider authorizing the use of force in Syria. Photo Credit: U.S. State Department
Patch is taking the pulse of the members of Congress representing the St. Louis area as lawmakers get ready to consider authorizing the use of force in Syria. Photo Credit: U.S. State Department
As members of Congress conduct hearings and get briefings related to President Barack Obama's request to authorize the use of military force in Syria over that country's alleged use of chemical weapons on its own people, Patch is taking the pulse of Missouri's delegation in Congress.

Senate

Over the weekend, The St. Louis Beacon reported that Senator Claire McCaskill's office issued a statement indicating that the use of chemical weapons "crosses a line," and urged a deliberate and proportional response in conjunction with U.S. allies. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported Tuesday that McCaskill, a Democrat, had not yet indicated her support for a military action but supported the President's move to seek congressional approval. The Beacon reports that GOP Senator Roy Blunt also supports the President's move to seek congressional backing, but said it should have happened sooner.

House

Staff for Representative William "Lacy" Clay's office told Patch that the St. Louis Democrat would not have a statement on the issue until after congressional debate on the resolution. Republican U.S. Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer told the Post-Dispatch that he was "very reluctant to support this because, at this point, I do not see an outcome that is in everybody's best interest. I think we're getting ourselves mired in another mess." Republican Representative Ann Wagner issued a statement reported by KSDK-TV that said in part, "I do not believe the President or his Administration have made the case to Congress or more importantly the American people for military action in Syria at this time."

You Tell Us: Do you support U.S. military action in Syria?
Susan Nation September 04, 2013 at 12:11 AM
The London Times led the world to believe that thousands of children in Syria were victims of chemical warfare. In reality those thousands of tiny dead children were pictures taken by Kurds when Saddam Hussein of Iraq gassed some 50,000 Kurds and Iraqi. Hussein is now dead. However, it does not excuse the London Times for deliberately misleading the public about the genocide in Syria. I find it ironic that there is genocide in Africa: in the Sudan, Mogadishu, etc...and the London Times (and the NY Times/Washington Post) doesn't suggest bombing those nations, do they? Perhaps it is because the French and the Syrians have had such a cozy relationship over the decades that now the French are leaning on POTUS to help them out (in the form of brokering oil through Syria once again - as one can see - POTUS tends to listen to the French as in Libya and now Syria. Perhaps it is profit that is being realized, not humanity. Either way... The issue of Syria and its chemical use on civilians is abhorrent and the world at large should and is condemning such actions. However, it is a civil war and currently no other nation has suffered retaliation outside of Syria such as America experienced on 9-11. Furthermore, a teaching lesson of sending in a few Patriots to warn Assad of his foul actions is weak and almost ludicrous when children and adults are dying in the violence. The conflict in the Mideast is not like disciplining a child - a spank and send them to their room for time out. What history will teach about this period of unrest in the Middle East is that the Middle-Easterner does not trust anyone and that he/she hates everyone. Most of all, they hate themselves. In their self-loathing and loathing for others, they blame their government, they blame the Americans, they blame God (Christian God, Hindu God, etc). Meanwhile, the merchants of war, ie, the Russians and Chinese smile patiently and get fabulously wealthy selling defense items to those that hate themselves. I wouldn't send a Patriot into a country that has gone insane and bestial. I wouldn't send our State Department or deliver speeches that look pretty for the next election cycle. It won't help. Today Al Queda rules, tomorrow the rebels rule, the next day Assad assumes control, or the next week the military stages a coup. One must remember this is the Middle East where loathing of everyone and anyone is normal. What is needed is a global conversation about the insanity in the Middle East and the means to end the age of despots and tyrants such as we saw in such men as Stalin, Hitler and Mao and now Assad, Khomeini, and Hussein. An objective meeting where leaders of those nations rife with hate can come to terms with themselves, not with other nations who live productive and better lives (not perfect). The question facing and to ask our representatives - do we allow such butchers to control the vast resources of energy at their disposal? If they would hurt each other - it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out they would hurt everyone else in whatever means possible. That is the nature of self-loathing. And frankly the message of the Middle East is like a virus that is killing anyone in its path.
kate bacon September 04, 2013 at 07:29 AM
I tried researching your alleged "London Times fake pictures" statement and could find nothing. Would you support your premise please with facts?
flyoverland September 04, 2013 at 10:22 AM
It is a no-win for us. Both sides hate us now. If we intervene, both sides will still hate us and the losing side will also blame us. This is not a war for democracy. This is a war for the supremacy of one flavor of Islam over the other. I thought this country had a prohibition against interfering in issues of church and state? I am unwilling to spend any American lives or treasure on promoting a religious war. If and when they want democracy, they will be willing to fight for it.
Thomas O'Neill September 04, 2013 at 05:27 PM
I would like to ask Senator McCaskill what line did we cross when we started torturing people?
srsly September 05, 2013 at 09:46 AM
Those kids coughing, gasping for air and dying sure were good actors. Strange those videos just surfaced after 10 years. Leave it to a commenter on the Patch to break the news to the world. I guess it's time for more faux outrage.
Dan September 05, 2013 at 08:23 PM
When we were involved in Vietnam the point was made that it was a civil war and we had no business interfering. Obviously, this is also a civil war. The United States did not intervene when Sadam used gas against the Kurds so what is different about this situation? Certainly it is horrific and any sane person will oppose the use of chemical weapons, but the US cannot and SHOULD not be the world's policemen. Our military was downsized years ago with the idea we would call up the National Guard and Reserves in times of crisis. Well many of our Guard and Reservists have been deployed to the Middle East 3 and 4 times. We can't fight full time war with part time soldiers. Our troops are tired and have had enough. To require them to fight ANOTHER war in the Middle East (where everyone hates us anyway) is INSANE.
Sonny Pondrom September 08, 2013 at 10:41 AM
NPR today reported that a Syrian, whose family members were gased, said he does not want the US intervention. Not unless it comes as a mediator to their problems. This appears to be the best path to peace.
John September 14, 2013 at 10:22 AM
Take a stand Lacy.
Sonny Pondrom September 14, 2013 at 10:44 AM
Today it was reported that every day, 22 U.S. military men/women who served in war attempt suicide. I don't remember if this is represents the successful number or not, but either way it is terrible. We should stay outside the civil war and try to influence a peace solution.

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