Thursday, 6 December 2012

Assad's use of WMDs would also shame the West & the world

I sent this letter sent to The Times, which has not been published.

Also see this NBC report claiming that Syrian forces may be preparing chemical weapons for use.

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Sir,

Your report (£) about Assad's regime preparing to use chemical weapons and the comments of President Obama that were this to occur there would be "consequences" exposes a depressing truth not just about this brutal regime, but about the weakness of the Western and international response.

By saying that "the use of chemical weapons is and would be totally unacceptable", Obama reluctantly confirms to Assad (and all would-be dictators the world over) that the use of other forms of lethal force such as heavy artillery, war planes, tanks, ground troops and even the use of murderous gangs of regime militia, is acceptable. Of course the US and her allies condemn such violence, but they are resolutely failing to act to prevent it. Tacit acceptance has the same practical effect on the ground as wholehearted support: the violence continues.

People of good conscience, who believe in the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which guarantees "the right to life, liberty and security of person", must urge their leaders to take action against dictators when they egregiously trample on these rights, whatever mechanism of violence is deployed. Chemical weapons are merely a more efficient and terrifying means of pursuing the course of action that Assad has embarked upon, emboldened as he is by the world's indifference.

Kind regards,

John Slinger
Chair, Pragmatic Radicalism

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