Intervene in Syria: for or against?

by stephanie.racine05 on September 9, 2013 - 10:29pm

There is as much ways to govern as the number of country there is in the world. As Canadians, we have the chance to live in a country that is governed by democracy. However, as we noticed during the past few weeks, Syrian people are not as lucky as we are. Indeed, the Syrian government would most likely be the author of the use of chemical weapons held against its own people.

            One of Brian Stewart’s articles, Syria’s civil war: No good options and so many ‘know unknown’ is debating whether or not the United States should intervene in Syria. Basically, Brian Stewart defend the point that there is no better option than another, due to the fact that there is too much information missing to take a good and informed decision. Inter alia, nobody can anticipate what would be the reaction of the government, faced to the countries’ attack.

            People that are in favor of the United States intervening in Syria argue that first of all, not going in Syria would be acting against the United States’ self-interest because to step back would hamper the credibility of the American government, who already announced its intention of interfering in the corrupted country. Moreover, as the United Nations are not able to act concretely in Syria, due to the fact that some countries are supporting the Syrian government, it is the other countries’ responsibility to act in order to bring back harmony, peace and order in Syria, and to do justice to those who have been victims of the attack. Those who second the intervention sustain that in the name of compassion, collective responsibility and security, the United States must take an action to protect the population of Syria and that the ethical principle of “do no harm” must be defended. Finally, Brian Stewart emphasizes the fact that it is the countries’ duty to punish Syria and to discourage other governments to use similar weapons. It is essential to fix limits for the future, in order to maintain peace, harmony and order, and an intervention, even as risky as it is, would be a greater good for the future of Syria, and of the whole world.

            However, there are major arguments that are against an intervention from the United States in Syria. In fact, the risks of an intervention of this type are enormous, and success is by no means assured because there is little hope to settle anything and make the situation better for the Syrian people. This is where self-preservation and security comes into play; does an intervention from the United States would really do any good? The non-partisans of any interference with the Syrian conflict are arguing that sanctity of life is an important element that should be taken under consideration: many lives are taken away everyday due to wars, why should we add other deaths to it? In addition, sending American soldiers in Syria comes down to using them as a mean to bring back a sort of peace and order, and will most likely harm a lot of them. Furthermore, Syria is not alone. Indeed, Russia is a valuable ally of the Syrian government and represents a major threat to the United States. Therefore, for the United States, to go to war with Syria would also mean having to fight against Russia, and would compromise the world’s peace and order, as well as it would jeopardize the global security. To conclude, even though a lot of evidences are against the Syrian government, it has not been proven yet that the country’s government is responsible for the use of chemical weapons. Some are consequently arguing that it would be an injustice to attack the Syrian government and to punish it for something we are not actually sure it did.

            In my opinion and based on the arguments presented on both sides, even though I strongly believe in sanctity of life and attach a great importance to the preservation of the world’s peace, I think that an intervention in Syria would be a greater good than to let this attack unpunished. I believe it is of utmost importance to do justice to the victims of this terrible event, and to ensure that these weapons will never be used again by any other country, government or group. It is of our collective responsibility to act for the benefit of our future world, even if it implies to do sacrifices today. I other words, in my opinion, an intervention in Syria is, without a doubt, necessary because we cannot, under any circumstances, let such an act happen without acting to show our disagreement with the Syrian government, and our support for the Syrian people.

However, this decision is not mine. Will the United States prefer to preserve the world’s order, or do their belief in our collective responsibility will be stronger?


Stewart, Brian. “Syria's civil war: No good options and so many 'known unknowns'.” CBC News 3 Sep. 2013: World. Web. 3 Sep. 2013.


I agree with the choice of intervening in Syria because we cannot let a government attack his own population when it is supposed to protect it. Moreover if nobody ever intervenes will it ever end? In my opinion this war has last long enough and it is now time to do something. I understand the concept of intrusion but is it more about political ideas or protecting innocent people?

I agree with the fact that developed countries such as Canada and the United-States should do something to stop the actual crisis in Syria. However, I don’t think the use of force is the best idea. Enough innocents have been killed in this country with arms and chemical weapons. What do we have to do as developed countries is to use our resources and knowledge to change the system established by the dictators. But, in the last days, there were new developments in the case of Syria. Syria agreed to destroy all its chemical weapons. It is not confirmed officially, but I think the oppression of the United-States help a lot in this agreement. In rare cases (like this one), I think threat could be used to convince a dictator to prevent hundreds of death.

This ethical issue grabbed my attention because I am interested in international politics. I agree with your point of view that we cannot be indifferent to major issues in other countries such as Syria. We are privileged to live in a democratic country where our lives are not in danger and where our rights and freedoms are respected. In this state of mind, we should help other countries acquire those rights. However, Syria is another country, another culture, and other beliefs. We cannot impose our way of thinking on this country. Yes, I do believe that it is our duty to do our best to assure that the safety and rights of the population in those corrupted countries are respected but we have no rights to go in Syria to tell them how to govern their country. Furthermore, in my opinion, the United States probably do not have the only mission to go help the Syrian population get a better government. They would not be spending so much money and putting the life of their soldiers at risk if there was no hidden motives in favor of the Americans. Do you think the United States have some self-interests that are influencing their decision to interfere in the Syrian government?

I am commenting on a post that was put online basically 3 years ago, with things obviously happening since then, impacting Syria. However, ignoring such things and focusing in the year 2013, it's such a fine line whether or not the United States should intervene in Syria. I think I must give a slight edge to intervening with Syria, however not with brute military force and more chaos that is already affecting the country. Instead, I believe the United States and perhaps even other countries if possible could contribute and intervene in other ways, such as giving food and water packages for the innocent people who are unfortunately suffering in their very own country. Even some currency if necessary, to help civilians move to a safer part of the country or even flee to another country. The bigger power countries must also do their part and have open arms and at least accept some refugees is the problem does not get better anytime soon. If any negotiations with the Syrian government are to be made, it should be done peacefully and as quickly as possible to resolve the terrible actions occurring in a country where its people are defenseless and unsafe.