Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

9/9/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Nation has incredible stakes and difficult options.

Despite the steady drumbeat of war, a strike on Syria may not come with Congressional approval after all. A powerful coalition of anti-war Democrats and Republicans critical of Obama's foreign policy has formed. That coalition puts votes in both the House and Senate in question. For the nation, the stakes are much higher than most realize.

Obama is blitzing with everything he has over attacking Syria.

Obama is blitzing with everything he has over attacking Syria.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

9/9/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in U.S.

Keywords: Obama, Syria, Assad, strikes, stakes, Congress, approval, vote, war, risk, hegemony


WASHINGTON, DC (Catholic Online) - The Senate will still probably vote to authorize the strikes, even if Vice President Biden must break a tie there. On Saturday night, Obama and Biden hosted six GOP senators at Biden's residence in hopes of securing their votes for a strike.

Congress returns to work today, and by the end of this week, they will take up the issue of whether to approve Obama's request for strikes against Syria. Tallies of the votes are not being publicized, so it is difficult to ascertain the overall sentiment. Many representatives have said they remain undecided.

Support among the American public for a strike on Syria is low. Few international allies support the notion. Syria and Iran have pledged to retaliate against the U.S. and possibly Israel. Russia has promised to provide additional arms to the Assad regime. China and Russia have both deployed warships to the Eastern Mediterranean to monitor the situation there.

Americans fear that even if Obama loses the upcoming vote in Congress, he will order a military strike anyway. He has already affirmed his right to do so, although it remains in legal doubt. Still, as commander-in-chief, Obama can give the order and the missiles will land long before the lawyers can mobilize to stop him.

The past week has seen intense lobbying. Even though the congressional leaders of both parties support the strikes, the majority seem to remain undecided, or are at least quiet about their sentiments.

The crux of the problem is that national credibility is at stake. Obama pledged strikes if Assad used chemical weapons. Although Assad denies responsibility, both common sense and evidence suggest he did so, if the administration can be believed about anything. In truth, it is unlikely that the rebels can deploy such a powerful and coordinated chemical weapons attack. Only the regime had the resources to stage the attack that came in short test bursts followed by a main strike delivered by mortar and rocket.

Among the evidence being privately shared are communications intercepts, which both the administration and those who have seen them all agree are damning to the Assad regime.

Based on the evidence at hand, Assad is responsible for the attacks that killed some 1,300 people. The United States has pledged a response. However, that response could open a much wider conflict that draws the U.S. and other nations into war.

Conversely, the U.S. can do nothing, and that obliterates the final shred of credibility kept by the Obama administration. U.S. international resolve will appear broken on the world stage. Assad will have gotten away with using a weapon of mass destruction and enemies of the U.S. may be emboldened.

There are no easy solutions because Obama promised military action from the outset, effectively painting the nation into a corner.

Now we must decide if we are to double down on war and violence, or if another way can be found to handle the situation.

It may be tempting to turn the nation inwards, to say that foreign problems are not the responsibility of the United States, for we have plenty of domestic issues at home. Yet, history teaches that every great power that has turned inward, such as late 15th century China and postwar Great Britain, has seen a loss of hegemony and power with economic repercussions. Such a choice would mark the start of a decline, as history suggests.

If the United States does the same, we can expect to compete with the rest of the world on a more level playing field, as opposed to the present one that favors us much more than most Americans realize. This will mean higher prices for imports, less influence in the world, and less prestige. All these things matter to us domestically and are the reason why we enjoy a lifestyle that is otherwise beyond our means as a nation.

Perhaps this is what is at stake in Syria.

Whatever happens, this will be a significant moment in American history, more significant than most realize. Will our nation continue to be the world's police force in exchange for hegemony and cheap resources? Or, will we take our seat equal amongst the other nations and wax nostalgic for more belligerent times?

There are no easy solutions, for both choices bear a cost. This week we decide. Next week, it's time to start paying.


Watch Catholic Online's most viral videos here!

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for October 2014
Peace:
That the Lord may grant peace to those parts of the world most battered by war and violence.
World Mission Day: That World Mission Day may rekindle in every believer zeal for carrying the Gospel into all the world.



Comments


More U.S.

Father Peter M. J. Stravinskas on the Synod on the Family: Duc in Altum

Image of Lorenzo Lotto's depiction of the Holy Family's rest on the flight into Egypt.

By Father Peter M. J. Stravinskas, Ph.D., S.T.D.

Christians today in most parts of the world find themselves in a world much like the one inhabited by the first Christians - rampant sexual license, abortion, contraception, family break-down.  Those early Christians took a counter-cultural stance, echoing ... continue reading


(Video) Nina Pham's incredible goodbye will bring you to tears Watch

Image of Supporters of Nina Pham, the nurse who was infected with Ebola at Texas Health Presbyterian hospital.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital has released a video which shows the goodbye between Ebola-patient Nina Pham and her doctor, as she leaves Dallas for treatment in Maryland. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The 26-year-old nurse was infected with Ebola after ... continue reading


(Video) South Carolina's shocking SHARKNADO! Watch

Image of A rare shark feeding frenzy was caught on video in North Carolina, as hundreds of sharks attacked a school of Blue Fish.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

An amazing video has appeared on YouTube which shows 100 of sharks engaged in a feeding frenzy just feet from the shore in Cape Lookout, North Carolina. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The bizarre video was taken on October 9, but was not made public until ... continue reading


Fed takes in record of over $3 trillion in taxes Watch

Image of A Treasury Department report has revealed that the U.S. government has taken in a record amount of tax revenue for the 2014 fiscal year, at over $3 trillion.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The latest Monthly Treasury Statement has showed that inflation-adjusted federal tax revenues and tax revenues have reached their highest point even as of the 2014 fiscal year. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The inflation-adjusted tax revenue reached ... continue reading


James Robison: Turn In Your Sermons! Watch

Image of James and Betty Robison

By James Robison

The city of Houston has issued a wake up call to all freedom-loving Americans by ordering pastors to turn in their sermons and staff communications dealing with homosexuality, gender identity, and Mayor Annise Parker. You must hear the real message loud and clear ... continue reading


He doesn't even care anymore. Government draws in $3 trillion after numerous tax hikes Watch

Image of The U.S. government took in over $3 trillion dollars in taxes for fiscal year 2014.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The U.S. government has collected a record amount of taxes for the 2014 fiscal year, topping $3 trillion in revenue for the first time in history, numbers from the Treasury Department revealed. The data also showed that this influx of cash has brought the current ... continue reading


Trying to win a Darwin Award? Man seen walking next to Ebola patient with clipboard for protection Watch

Image of Who is this man and why isn't he protected like the others?

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Maybe he's trying to win a Darwin Award? The nation is aghast at a plainclothes man who appears to be coolly walking beside Ebola-infected nurse, Amber Vinson protected only by --a clipboard. Everyone else around him was dressed in a hazmat suit as she was placed ... continue reading


After two years it's back! Mysterious Air Force spaceship to land in California Watch

Image of The U.S. Air Force's X-37B, which is set to land at Vandenberg Air Force base on October 15, after nearly two years in orbit.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The United States mysterious X-37B unmanned space plane is about to land after it has spent almost two years in orbit on a classified mission. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The Air Force announced that the X-37B will land at Vandenberg Air Force Base in ... continue reading


Supreme Court trounces Texas rights in abortion bill battle Watch

Image of Supporters of the Texas anti-abortion bill which was passed back in July 2013.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The controversial anti-abortion law passed by Texas in 2013 that had shut down numerous unsafe and unsanitary abortion clinics is now being halted by order of the Supreme Court. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The 6-3 order means that many abortion clinics that ... continue reading


U.S. doctor cured of Ebola gives blood to stricken Texan nurse Watch

Image of Twenty-six-year-old Nina Pham has been in quarantine since last week after catching the disease from

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

With growing fears of Ebola ravaging the United States, an American doctor who contracted the disease - and survived, has donated some of his blood to Texas nurse, 26-year-old Nina Pham, who fell ill after treating an infected Liberian man. It's the third ... continue reading


All U.S. News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Ephesians 2:1-10
1 And you were dead, through the crimes and the ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 100:2, 3, 4, 5
2 serve Yahweh with gladness, come into his presence ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 12:13-21
13 A man in the crowd said to him, 'Master, tell my ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for October 20th, 2014 Image

St. Paul of the Cross
October 20: St. Paul of the Cross was born at Ovada in the Republic of ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter