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The PJ Tatler

by
Bridget Johnson

Bio

June 20, 2013 - 1:58 pm

Two Democrats and two Tea Party Republicans joined together today on bill to block military funds to Syria.

Sens. Tom Udall (D-N.M.), Mike Lee (R-Utah), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), and Rand Paul (R-Ky.) introduced legislation to ban the Defense Department, the CIA, and all other intelligence agencies from funding any military, paramilitary, or covert operations in Syria. Humanitarian aid would not be affected.

Udall, Murphy, and Paul are all members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and cast the only dissenting votes in committee against authorizing President Obama to train and equip rebels.

“There are too many questions about how the President’s decision to arm the Syrian rebels will be handled, and unfortunately many of those answers are being kept secret,” Udall said. “We don’t know where the money is coming from, who the arms are going to, and whether the arms are going to individuals who have the capabilities to maintain a chain of custody of those weapons.  This would not be acceptable in any standard sale of weapons to another government and should definitely not be acceptable for sales to rebel groups we know little about.”

“We need to place a check on the president’s unilateral decision to arm the rebels, while still preserving humanitarian aid and assistance to the Syrian people, and that is why I’m introducing this bill,” the New Mexico Dem added.

“The long-term objectives of increased involvement in Syria are vague, as are the necessary commitments and costs,” Lee said. “The United States cannot be involved in more nation building in the Middle East.”

Paul called Obama’s decision to arm the opposition “incredibly disturbing,” and Murphy said he’s “deeply skeptical” about intervention.

“I think the president’s in a very difficult position here. Clearly, there’s a slaughter happening in Syria today. And I can completely understand why he feels compelled to act, but the problem is really twofold. First, the momentum is on Bashar al-Assad’s side right now. And so, in order to turn the tide in Syria, you can’t just give a bunch of automatic weapons to the rebels. You have to give them some fairly serious weapons. And the reality is, is that, well, we’re going to try to thread the needle and get the weapons to the Free Syrian Army,” Murphy said on MSNBC today.

“And then the second problem is this. Even if we are successful in beating Assad, there is probably going to be a follow-on, very complicated civil war involving Al Qaida, involving Russian influences, Iranian influences. We’re talking about potentially a decade-long commitment there. And I just want the Senate to have a full debate about this right now.”

Bridget Johnson is a career journalist whose news articles and opinion columns have run in dozens of news outlets across the globe. Bridget first came to Washington to be online editor at The Hill, where she wrote The World from The Hill column on foreign policy. Previously she was an opinion writer and editorial board member at the Rocky Mountain News and nation/world news columnist at the Los Angeles Daily News. She has contributed to USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, National Review Online, Politico and more, and has myriad television and radio credits as a commentator. Bridget is Washington Editor for PJ Media.

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Top Rated Comments   
Once again, Sarah Palin got it right. "Until we have a competent Commander In Chief..........let Allah sort it out". Right on, right on, right on.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
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All Comments   (13)
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As long as the overly politicized are profoundly afflicted with selective vision, they will not see the consequences of ignoring Christians in Syria.

At least some have enough chutzpah not to drink the koolaid, which the overly politicized have chugged.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
Here's the thing: if not for the fact that Obama Inc "led from behind" in Libya, chiefly to arm the Syrian Brotherhood in the first place - aka the "rebels" - the regional fires would not be on the brink. Now this is not to suggest that Islamic pyromaniacs - Sunni and Shia - are not always raring to kill for hegemonic rule, the fact of the matter is that there is NO American interest to arm the "rebels", many of whom are Al Qaeda and Brotherhood offshoots!
In effect, it is six of aone and half a dozen of another - http://adinakutnicki.com/2012/11/25/the-coming-encirclement-of-syria-six-of-one-half-a-dozen-of-another-addendum-to-islamists-are-bloodthirsty-whatever-their-stripes-commentary-by-adina-kutnicki/

The Pyromaniac-in-Chief is mendaciosuly acting as the firefighter!

Adina Kutnicki, Israel http://adinakutnicki.com/about/
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
This is all Islamic bullpoop. Qatar wants to be the big cheese of the Islamic Union or whatever, and is taking down Syria and Libya, etc. The shiekh or whatever he is is paying Hamas to torment Israel so they can't interfere, I guess, and paid dissidents to start the trouble in Syria. This, while he has a military base right on his home ground. He wants us to fight his damn war for him. I think they want to get rid of the Sauds, or they are having some kind of family coup, also...
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
Which side is the good side? They both look alike to me.

If we do get involved, let's just take out both sides.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
Can't we send them some Chevy Volts or something?
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
strange bedfellows and all that.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
Every day it seems that Obama has instigated something more astonishing than his last. Just this side of it being worthwhile to draw up the Impeachment Papers.

He hasn't got the wit/testicles/experience to acknowledge that he's so far over his head that our Nation is at risk.

Besides, he probably doesn't really care, he's in the headlines. That's the key to Obama. Headlines. From now and forever after, Barack Hussein and Michelle are the Black Kennedy's.

That is not a compliment.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
When they are done killing each other, Osama II will turn their weapons against us in a replay of Afghanistan before 911.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
We don't have money to feed our troops in Afghanistan hot meals (sequester, you know), but we have hundreds of millions to arm one group of Islamists against another group.

Let's just watch to see both sides lose. We were supposed to keep the Middle East safe for their oil. Now we have more oil than they do, why meddle in Syria's internal affairs?
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
Hey look they found some grown-ups!!!
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
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