Congress moves to approve Syria strike
Obama’s battle to get congressional approval for a military strike on Syria moved a step closer Tuesday, with leaders of both parties in Congress announcing that the United States should respond to Syrian President Assad’s alleged use of chemical weapons.
US President Barack Obama convinced leaders of both Democrats and Republicans in Congress to support his request for the authorization of a military strike on Syria. After a meeting with more than a dozen senior lawmakers this week, members of both parties went public, praising Obama’s plan and pledging a ‘yes’ vote on the operation against the Syrian government.
Rep. John Boehner (R-Ohio), the speaker of the House of Representative, told reporters after a White House meeting on Tuesday that he thinks it’s important that Americans to unite behind their president.
“This is something that the United States, as a country, needs to do. I’m going to support the president’s call for action. I believe that my colleagues should support this call for action,” he said.
House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor also said that they will both support actions against the Assad government following meetings at the White House.
Obama had been meeting more than a dozen lawmakers in the White House cabinet room to push for limited strikes to dismantle Assad’s ability to use chemical weapons in the future. The president said he is confident he can persuade a skeptical American public that a strike Syria will not emulate the wars in Afghanistan or Iraq, and that US military action will be a “limited, proportionate step.”
Boehner said that only the US has the capability to stop Assad.
“We have enemies around the world that need to understand we’re not going to tolerate this type of behavior. We also have allies around the world and allies in the region who also need to know that America will be there and stand up when it’s necessary,” he said.
Boehner’s views were echoed by Rep. Eliot Engel of New York, the top Democrat to attend the White House meeting from the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
“We are talking about weapons of mass destruction. This is war crime. If we didn’t respond in kind it would send a message to every despot, every thug, every dictator, every terrorist group in the world that you can murder your own citizens with impunity and nothing is going to happen,” Engel said.
But after over a decade of war in Iraq and Afghanistan, the polls show that Americans are opposed to any new overseas military intervention. This reluctance is reflected by senators and representatives who believe Obama still hasn’t produced concrete evidence that it was Assad who used chemical weapons on August 21 or why it is in America’s interest to intervene.
Rep. Justin Amash (R-Michigan) tweeted that he has been talking to his constituents and armed forces personnel, neither of whom have the stomach for military action in Syria.
Continue Reading at …. http://rt.com/usa/congress-approve-attack-syria-364/