By Benjamin Welton

Many doomsayers wrote President Donald Trump’s political epitaph on April 14, when a coalition of American, British, and French warships and aircraft bombed Syria in response to a chemical attack in the city of Douma. Pro- and anti-Trumpers alike poured forth word salads about how the man who promised to end America’s never-ending wars in the Muslim world was dragging the United States into the Syrian Civil War.

So far, those fears seem overblown. The Pentagon reports that a total of 105 missiles were deployed over Syria by the Western powers, with most hitting virtually abandoned military research centers in the cities of Damascus and Homs. The Syrian government, which is not averse to inflating statistics, reported that, at best, nine people were injured during the strike. There is even an ongoing argument about whether or not President Bashar al-Assad’s military managed to shoot down several American missiles. More importantly, no Russians have been listed among the wounded, thus bypassing the thorny issue of a Russian response to the strike.

It appears that conservatives, liberals, and all colors beyond the political pale gnashed their teeth over very little. Trump’s decision to bomb Syria will not stop President Bashar al-Assad from winning the war. Indeed, some pundits have even suggested that the Syrian strike was not truly aimed at Assad, but rather at North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. Michael Malice, who reported on his journey inside of North Korea in his 2014 book Dear Reader: The Unauthorized Biography of Kim Jong-il, told Breitbart that he believes President Trump is playing the “bad cop” to China’s “good cop.” By cultivating a reputation as a loose cannon, President Trump is allowing China to whisper in North Korea’s ear something along the lines of “Reform your state along our guidelines before that crazy Yankee decides to bomb you.”

While President Trump’s second foray into the Syrian quagmire is not the neoconservative invasion that National Security adviser John Bolton apparently wanted, it still raises the specter of future bombing runs. The case will be made here that:

  1. A complete removal of all American ground forces from Syria and cessation of bombing campaigns is, without question, the best foreign policy option at this point, and
  2. Supporting Bashar al-Assad would be a lesser evil than supporting the Syrian rebels.

The US Intervention is Based on Supposition

The stated reason for the April 14 airstrike is the same as for the April 7, 2017 airstrike: to punish the Assad regime for using chemical weapons on its own people. But this begs the question: why would Assad use chemical weapons when he is winning the war? President Assad is no moron when it comes to geopolitics, so he is quite aware that the West feels obligated to respond to every chemical or biological attack, regardless of where the attack occurs. Therefore, why would Assad willingly jeopardize his military victory by inviting foreign intervention?

There is also the fact that no impartial investigators have conclusively proven that Assad’s forces used chemical weapons in Douma on April 7. Dr. Assim Rahaibani, a medical doctor on the ground in Douma, came to the conclusion that the victims of the attack had actually been hit with conventional artillery, not chemical weapons. He noted that the patients he saw were suffering from hypoxia, a type of oxygen loss that is usually the result of inhaling large quantities of building dust. It is also telling that journalist Robert Fisk of The Independent recorded Dr. Rahaibani saying that the first people to accuse Assad of using gas were the “White Helmets”.

Despite a completely naïve and disgustingly overwrought documentary (which won an Academy Award, thanks in no small part to the global liberalism of Hollywood), the “White Helmets” of the Syria Civil Defense have ties to the jihadist militias currently fighting the Assad regime. Given this, it would not be outside the realm of possibility for the “White Helmets” to either exploit a conventional attack or completely fabricate one in order to draw the West into attacking Assad.

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