A new CBS News/ New York Times poll says Americans are becoming more isolationist regarding foreign adventures. Majorities don't want the US military to get involved in either Syria or North Korea. That's good news. As the Obama Administration contemplates sending lethal aid to the Syrian opposition, we ought to ask ourselves some fundamental questions.
Since the stepped up help seems to be in response to reports that the Syrian government is using chemical weapons, how accurate are those reports? The president seems to have the same qualms. While the opposition says the Assad regime is using sarin gas, there are also reports that the rebels are using chlorine gas. Who are we to believe? Make no mistake. 70,000 lives are estimated to have been lost, and that can't be ignored. And anyone using chemical weapons on innocent people are barbarians unfit to govern.Yet we need to know more, particularly about the opposition. Are they prepared to create a democratic government than that of Assad?
As for North Korea, a majority in the poll say they can be contained without using US military force. Kim Jon Un may act irrationally, but the smart money is he doesn't want to start aware he can't possibly win (no matter his bluster on the subject).
The troubling aspect of the poll is the support so many Americans have for the use of drones in foreign countries. 70% think these remote control strikes are the right thing for America to do. One wonders if they know how many innocent lives have been lost at the hands of these strikes. Aside from the enemies the taking of innocent lives creates, there is a larger question. We have experienced the pain of everything from 9/11 to the Boston Marathon bombings. Are we unable, as the world's greatest superpower, to feel the pain of others?
As anyone who listens to the WWRL Morning Show knows, I have a big problem with drones. There ought to be a way to deal with our countries' enemies without having to say sorry to the families of the dead, and pay them some small compensation for their loss.
There is a better way, isn't there?
You tell me.
Tune in to The RL Morning Show with Mark Riley weekdays 6 AM to 9 AM on WWRL AM 1600. Follow Mark on Twitter @MarkRileyMedia and @WWRL_1600.