On Saturday, April 7th, dozens of innocent Syrian civilians were killed in what appears to have been an attack by the Assad-led Syrian government on its own people with internationally illegal chemical weapons.
Decrying this heinous, reprehensible act of senseless violence and pointing to it as their impetus, the United States--joined in support this time by France and the UK--perpetrated its own reprehensible act of senseless violence, launching 118 or more missiles at the Syrian capital of Damascus late on the night of Friday, April 13th.
Though there is no official body count for this attack, a similar series of missile strikes by the US on a Syrian air base in April of last year resulted in the death of 15 total Syrians, including nine civilians. And this year the strikes were on Damascus, a heavily populated capital, rather than on a military base with small surrounding villages.
Many people have praised the president and, indeed, the country, for "sticking up to" Assad and the Syrian government's war crimes. But there is little to no reason to believe these strikes will do anything than stoke the flames of war and result in further unnecessary casualties of frightened men, women, and children that we can't even be bothered to help.
We conducted retaliatory strikes against Syria last year for a similar chemical attack on its people, and it still happened again. Dictator Assad does not care about the lives of the people he purports to govern; if he did, he wouldn't be using chemical weapons on them in the first place.
Meanwhile, he has been continually perpetrating other vicious attacks on his people up until this most recent attack, with little fanfare or attention from President Trump.
Meanwhile, in 2017, the United States killed as many as 6,000 civilians in the Middle East--not military personnel or terrorists; innocent men, women, and children--in missile strikes.
It is frankly inconceivable how someone can support these kinds of strikes on the basis of attempting to protect or save the Syrian people while simultaneously living in and supporting a nation who has, thus far this year, only taken in 11 (that's not a typo) refugees this year, despite overwhelming statistical evidence that refugees are not dangerous.
It is frankly inconceivable how a government pretends as though it lacks the resources and funds to fix the water pipes in Flint, MI or provide sufficient aid to Puerto Rico in the wake of a disastrous hurricane, while simultaneously spending well over $100 million in a single night just to send a "message" to a dictator.
War is senseless. Death is senseless. Allowing our own citizens to be literally poisoned by unsafe drinking water is senseless. Letting citizens in Puerto Rico remain homeless and without power is senseless. Refusing entry into our country people whose lives literally depend on it is senseless.