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Conflict In Syria : Why No Country Has Moral Authority In Today’s World

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With the U.S. possibly intervening in the tragic situation in Syria, it appears as though this country may be heading toward another military operation. This country has had plenty of these operations in the past that fall under the same explanation: we’re doing what’s right for a people who are being put through something they shouldn’t be put through.

In other words, the U.S. is the moral authority in this world because we have the biggest and most ready to use military in this world.

The sad truth is that if the U.S. is the closest to one country being the moral authority for this world, then there is no real moral authority in this world. This writer will concede that the U.S. is much better in this area than a lot of countries, but sticks to his guns that even the U.S. can’t consider itself the world’s moral authority if it takes an honest look at itself and its history.

Back to the Syrian conflict…

This could be another example of the U.S. intervening militarily in a situation that doesn’t directly impact the U.S. Are countries that are political allies involved in this conflict? Yes, but is that really reason enough to send our military into a situation where they’re fighting someone who’s not directly fighting them? Apparently yes, given this country’s military history.

The other thing that people have to remember, especially with the “moral authority” theory at work, is that this conflict has gone on for over two years, but only now are the U.S. is ready to get its hands dirty.

Why? Because of the allegations of chemical weapons use by the Assad regime in Syria.

Forget all the killing, bloodshed, death, and other terrible events captured for the world and presented on the nightly news seemingly every night, it was the chemical weapons use that was over the line. And that is going over the line, but it’s not as though this conflict hasn’t been a chaotic mess from the start.

U.S. intervention in general must beg the question, is the U.S. really the only country capable of taking military action anywhere?

It really seems that any international conflict suddenly calls for American military intervention, or the possibly of it, and it makes little sense. This writer has already gone over the might of the American military, but it’s not the only military force in the world, nor is the U.S. the only country that has military forces ready for action. Yet, the U.S. is always called upon, quite possibly because of how far away the U.S. is (geographically) from these conflicts that don’t directly impact them.

And if you’re for the U.S. getting involved in the Syrian conflict militarily, remember one thing: constant military intervention doesn’t make a country the moral authority, it makes them the world police. Even if this country believes that is our role in the world, it actually isn’t. Besides, how can this country be the world police when we’re not that great at policing our own people?

The perception of the U.S. as the world police is a source of plenty of hatred directed toward it. Being the world police doesn’t make a country the moral authority for the world, setting good examples with how a country treats its citizens is how a country can appoint itself as a moral authority.

This country, though ahead of many, still has a lot to learn in this area.

And finally, the biggest reason the U.S. always seems hypocritical anytime the talk of “freedom and democracy” and “doing what is just and right” comes up is the U.S.’s shameful history of getting into bed with the same kind of people they fight supposedly for moral reasons.

Such dictators or tyrannical leaders the U.S. has aided or still does aid include Francisco Franco, Fulgencio Batista, Papa Doc & Baby Doc, Augusto Pinochet, Mohammed Reza Pahlavi, Manuel Noriega, Ngo Dinh Diem, Ferdinand Marcos, Mobutu Sese Seko, George Papadopoulos, King Abdullah II, Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov, and Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo. This is not even close to a full list, but is meant to show that there is a tradition going as far back as the 1920’s (if not longer) of the U.S. aiding and supporting regimes that were/are guilty of human rights violations galore, corruption, massive abuses of power, and many other characteristics of countries the U.S. has gone into battle against because “it’s the right thing to do.”

So why do we do it? Because the brutal regimes and dictators we partner with are “our guys.” They’re “our guys” because they either are fighting against someone we hate, they have base characteristics that we like, or they have something we want.

This writer knows it’s part of the political game to make deals with seedy people, but at the same time, don’t go patting yourself on the back about “freedom and democracy” when you go after one dictator or corrupt nation while being buddies with another dictator or corrupt nation just like the one you’re going after.

Phil Clark is a political writer for the Inscriber. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook, or check out his blog.

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