Bring back the bows and arrows

Secretary of State John Kerry said Monday that the Obama administration would hold the Syrian government accountable for what he called a “moral obscenity” that had shocked the world’s conscience. Syria's Assad apparently has broken some sacred rule of modern day warfare - no killing with chemical weapons.

A commentator on CNN pointed out that thus far in the Syrian civil war, about 100000 have been killed by weapons that go boom-boom, while 360 have been killed by chemical munitions. The 100000 killed, unfortunately were killed by approved weapons of warfare such as bombs. missiles, drones and automatic rifles.  The loss of life by conventional warfare weapons has resulted in hand wringing by the West and idle threats of "some sort of action" but it is those 360 lives lost by Assad unleashing chemical warfare munitions which will probably call for military action. Of course, any kind of military response designed to deter further use of chemical warfare weapons will escalate the number of lives lost by bombs, missiles, Drones and automatic rifles.

Chemical warfare should be strongly condemned. At the same time, warfare itself should be abhorred. There is nothing civilized about warfare no matter how sophisticated the weapons of destruction are. If we are going to regulate what kind of weapons are permissible in a conflict, I suggest that bows and arrows should be the weapon of choice.

Whether he likes it or not, Obama may very well be drawn into his own "little war". It will be a war that will cost more economic destruction here at home. It will be another war that we cannot win. It will be a war that we do not need. There are those who will point out that limited military action will get the job done and avoid a war. A rose by any other name smells the same. Surgical bombing, Drone attacks or any other kind of limited military action are in essence a declaration of war.