, Newburyport, MA


October 2, 2013

We've had enough of war


In 2011 we aborted our support for Murabak in Egypt and now we may face a civil war between the Muslim brotherhood and the Egyptian Army. This had led to the Arab Spring, civil unrest in the region and the civil war in Syria.

Our president created his “red line” with Syria and its use of chemical weapons and wants to fire missiles against Syria. This is an act of war. If Syria were to fire missiles against our nation, would it not be an act of war? Certainly, the president has gone to Congress to get the votes he needs for the act of war against Syria.

At the same time he claims to have the right to attach through the War Powers Act. The president is not a king, he not a dictator, he is president and as such his oath of office was to uphold the laws of the nation.

The Constitution is clear: The president cannot go to war without the approval of Congress.

Syria is not a threat to our national security. Syria is a problem for the nations of the Middle East, it’s a problem for Kuwait, Lebanon, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, for all the nations in that region. She is plain and simply not our problem, no way, no how.

Chemical weapons are a terrible act of war and have been banned by 180 nations and the United Nations.

If any action were to be taken against Syria it should be by an united front of world nations, not by our president.

In 1862 Major Gen. T.J. Jackson wrote, “It is painful enough to discover with what unconcern they speak of war and threaten it. I have seen enough of it to make me look upon it as the sum of all evils.” I think this nation has had enough of “pain” these last 10 years. We need no more.

The Syrian war is a civil war and terrible, but it’s not our business. Just a note for the reader: In our Civil War we lost 600,000 American souls.

War is hell, and “only the dead will have seen the end of war” (Plato).


Richard A. Astukewicz of Salisbury is a retired business manager.

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