We should recognize the opportunity the United States has to set a positive example for many countries in the Middle East by expressing our popular will on the decision to bomb Syria over their use of chemical weapons. [“Syrians plead their case for, against U.S. military strikes,” page one, Sept. 9.]
The Arab Spring has unleashed an uprising of peoples who have often had generations of oppressive rule that provided them with no chance for popular expression.
Dictators in these countries ruled without democratic checks and balances, and consequently made decisions that were not in the best interests of the governed people.
Free, fair and regular elections are not the only way to demonstrate how a democracy functions. We can clearly tell our representatives that we want military action to be a last resort, after diplomacy and other options are tried and exhausted.
By aligning our decision on military action in Syria with the will of the people, we can show that the principles of the Declaration of Independence — that “governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed” — applies to the United States and could apply to Syria.
David Roe, Seattle
Robert Reed told it pretty well, and, I agree with what he had to say. [“Northwest Voices: U.S. and Syria,” Opinion, Sept. 5.]
Removing Assad from power is only going to create a vacuum which will provide an avenue for a dozen (or more) splinter factions to attempt to fill. More and more civil war will follow. More rockets and missiles from U.S. warships will only contribute to the mayhem and death.
Finally, Secretary of State John Kerry calling Syrian President Bashar Assad a thug and a murderer is absolutely ludicrous.
F.L. Hutson, Seattle