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Washington Memo: Barring any changes in Syria, I oppose military action

First District Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter released a statement this week outlining her opposition to a proposed U.S. military strike on Syria. Here is what she said:

After attending classified and unclassified briefings on Syria and speaking with people across New Hampshire, at this point, I oppose the United States taking military action against the Assad regime in Syria.

While Syrian President (Bashar) al-Assad has committed vicious crimes against his own people, and I especially condemn the use of chemical weapons, it is hard to see at this time how a military air strike against Syria will fix this.

If the United States launches a sustained and heavy attack, we run the risk of swapping Assad out for some equally ruthless group. If we launch a smaller, targeted attack, we run the risk of emboldening President Assad and causing more casualties.

Barring any changes to the situation in Syria, I will vote against the current resolution authorizing the president to take military action in Syria.

I do not believe that military action will help resolve the civil war in Syria, and it might lead to more chaos and more regional instability.

I am not against all war, but in order to justify this act, there has to be a threat to national security, a strong strategy, and a good possibility of success.

At this moment, I do not believe the situation in Syria meets these criteria, and I fear that the United States could be drawn into a lengthy and deadly conflict.

Make no mistake, the situation in Syria is a tragedy, and the murderous Bashar al-Assad has lost all credibility as the leader of Syria.

However, I believe that the conflict in Syria will only be resolved through a negotiated political settlement, and I believe the world needs to condemn and isolate Assad while providing more humanitarian aid, helping border countries deal with the refugees, and working toward a negotiated political solution to this crisis.

(U.S. Rep. Carol Shea-Porter is a Democrat from Rochester.)

Legacy Comments2

Carol, thank you so much for adding some sanity to the discussion about Syria. Most of your colleagues are fixated on the question of how much evidence we have that Assad actually did what we know he did. Few are questioning the merits -- and risks -- of attacking Syria.

the carnival huckster politician full time campaigner of a president can't even get his party to back his latest political ploy...God help America survive the disaster known as Obama

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