I have identified with libertarianism in many aspects of political thought. The position taken by many libertarians on the issue of the use of the military, however, is one that I find somewhat puzzling. Rand Paul, for example, condemned Trump’s use of the military against the airbase in Syria on Constitutional grounds. But libertarians are not necessarily constitutionalists, and the government is so big, the constitution is currently a useful tool for purposes of argument. If they ever achieved a wind down of big government complete and thorough enough to suit them, the Constitution would certainly be the next target.
Perhaps opposition to the military has to do with taxation to support it, or the fact that military spending gets completely out of control, demanding more and more resources from citizens who would rather not pay for it. Or, perhaps the sort of ingrained opposition is simpler, the military representing force colliding with the idea that force is not acceptable under any circumstance.
I’d agree with the taxation point so far as the mismanagement of spending aspect of the issue. The rest are not points that I well understand, because if the ideal isn’t universal, or implies that I have no obligation at all to my neighbor, it’s not really something that I can agree with as being valid. I am not anti-social or immoral. I couldn’t witness a crime of violence in progress and simply go about my way, leaving the victim to be gravely injured or killed. I agree that there are people who can and do just walk by as another is victimized, and they do have that choice to make. But what does that say about their commitment to non-aggression and the idea that force is not acceptable if they do just walk by? My opinion is that they are poor examples of principle, looking away as force is used with impunity, are cowardly, and should never be held up as role models for any purpose. It is a completely unworkable ideology.
Yet this is what I see happening on a national scale. We are being urged to simply walk by crimes of violence in progress because intervention with the use of force against an evil, murdering dictator is not acceptable under any circumstance.
The war in Syria started when the dictator tried to put down protests with violent means. Basshar Al-Assad is an evil, mass murdering dictator using force against people who are attempting to gain what is rightfully theirs, political freedom. Have there not been enough dead babies or do the pacifists really not care? They disgust me more than the dictator himself.
Here is what the US military has to say about what happened after the attack with sarin gas on a village outside of Homs early last week:
Shortly after the regime’s chemical attack, a small, unmanned aerial vehicle — “either [Syrian] regime or Russian” — was seen over the local hospital as victims were being rushed there for care, an official said. “About five hours later, the UAV returned and the hospital was struck by additional munitions,” an official said.
The official pointed out the site is clearly a hospital. The United States is interested in finding out who would strike that site and why, the official said.
Trump did not do enough. Basshar Al-Assad’s ability to wage war against his own people must be destroyed.
Update: Here is a documentary on the beginning of the Syrian war. It is quite good. http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2016/05/syria-civil-war-explained-160505084119966.html