Protests denounce Syria strikes as U.S. threatens "to do more" and Australia plays follow the leader. Common Dreams' Andrea Germanos reports.
The strikes on a Syrian air base – launched without congressional approval or UN authorisation – were said to be in retaliation for Tuesday's chemical weapons attack against Syrian civilians, though there has not yet been an independent investigation showing that the chemical attack was, as the U.S. claims, ordered by President Bashar al-Assad.
While the direct military attack against the Syrian Government elicited fawning praise from media and lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, peace groups and humanitarian voices have condemned them — and many hit the streets to say that "bombs are not the answer" to the country's ongoing conflict.
Did we just bomb Syria to stop Syria from bombing Syria?🤔😣— serenax (@vashserena) April 7, 2017
In Philadelphia, dozens of protesters marched against the strikes, with some carrying signs reading 'U.S. Out of the Middle East'.
"It's only going to escalate the violence. I'm really concerned about the future of the Syrian people."
In Chicago, protester Vicki Cervantes stated to CBS, "The tragedy of the children is heart-rending," possibly referring to the children killed in the chemical attack or those killed in ongoing coalition strikes.
"But I think the response of escalation – of more bombing, of more war – only means more dead children."
"Even if international law is broken in a place, we're not some vigilante, rogue power that should just be allowed to go attack anyone that they deem has broken the law."
... will only increase the level of killing in Syria and inflame the terrible war that has already caused untold misery for the people of the country.
This is the worst possible way to respond to the indefensible attack at Khan Sheikhun. As well as deepening the tragedy of the Syrian people, this utterly irresponsible act threatens to widen the war and lead the West into military confrontation with Russia.
Earlier on Friday, during a UN Security Council meeting – in which the Bolivian ambassador to the United Nations offered a vital history lesson – U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley, who "seemed to be channeling George W Bush even more than her actual boss", according to one observer, described the strikes as "a very measured step".
"We are prepared to do more. But we hope that will not be necessary. It is time for all civilised nations to stop the horrors that are taking place in Syria and demand a political solution."
Trump’s Syria strikes “could pull the United States into a regional war and escalate humanitarian crisis” https://t.co/JHMtx7zbBB— Middle East Eye (@MiddleEastEye) April 8, 2017
Threatening to rise tensions with Russia, she said:
"Every time Assad has crossed the line of human decency, Russia has stood beside him ... Assad did this because he thought he could get away with it. He thought he could get away with it because he knew Russia had his back."
'Russia's deputy ambassador, Vladimir Safronkov, strongly criticised what he called the U.S. "flagrant violation of international law and an act of aggression" whose "consequences for regional and international security could be extremely serious."'
'President Vladimir V. Putin's office called the Tomahawk cruise missile strike on Syria a violation of international law and a "significant blow" to the Russian-American relationship, while Prime Minister Dmitri A. Medvedev said it had "completely ruined" it.'
" ... come to Congress to authorise any further use of force against the Assad regime."
originally published on Common Dreams and has been republished under a Creative Commons licence.
Only Congress can authorise the type of military force the President just unleashed on Syria. Instead of heading out of town for two weeks of vacation, we call on you to immediately return to Washington to debate and vote on Trump's military escalation in Syria.
President Donald Trump said that the attack was prompted by concern for the lives of Syrian civilians, but his administration has shown callous disregard for Syrians attempting to flee for their lives," noted Margaret Huang, executive director of Amnesty International USA. "He must immediately revoke the Muslim travel ban and end restrictions on refugees from Syria, fleeing the horrors at home.
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