US, Hands Off Syria!

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(A Statement of the Ecumenical Bishops Forum on the Plan of the United States of America to Attack the Regime of President Bashar Al-Assad of Syria)

Here comes again the self-appointed global policeman, ready to strike at innocent people!

US President Barrack Obama has announced that he is ready to punish the leadership of Syria 05candles3for using chemical weapons against its own people. More than a thousand innocent civilians, women and children included, died in the attack. The perpetrators of this heinous crime against humanity should be made accountable!

What does Obama hope to accomplish by attacking Syria? Sensing that the international community and the American public themselves do not support him, he blinked, and decided to seek approval from the US Congress before taking action. He clarified that the objective of the attack is not regime change but simply to punish Assad for using chemical weapons, and “deter, disrupt, prevent and degrade” his regime’s ability to use chemical weapons again. Obama’s does not intend, he says, to enter into war with Syria, but launch a “limited cruise missile strike” in order to send its message.

Does President Obama treat President al-Assad as a little child? That al-Assad will simply accept the “punishment”?

On the contrary, al-Assad vows to defend his country, asserting that Syria has the capability to enter into a full-scale war against the West. And should the war happen, even the Syrian rebels may fight against the US because they don’t trust this country. Opposition activist Mohammad al-Tageb said that the US “has never been a friend but an enemy.”

For the US to strike at Syria would be another blunder like its attack on Iraq. It will be very costly not only in terms of money but more so in terms of lives. If Assad’s regime had killed 1,400 (counts of other groups are much less), the casualties of US action in Syria could reach tens of thousands. The contemplated solution would only result to bigger problems. More innocent lives, including women and children, will become victims as the missiles would not distinguish between armed targets and civilians.

It would be wiser for Obama to stay put so that the lives of American soldiers will be spared as well. The message he wants to send al-Assad had already reached the latter.

Obama, a former Muslim and a Christian, should listen to the prophet Isaiah who said: “He (God) shall judge between the nations, and rebuke many people; They shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore” (Isaiah 2:4, NKJV).

He should stay off Syria.

Issued this 7th day of September, 2013.

Executive Secretary