Yesterday, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted 15-3 to arm the Syrian “rebels” in their civil war against the Assad regime. Rand Paul was the only Republican to vote no. James E. Risch, Marco Rubio, Ron Johnson, Jeff Flake, John McCain, and John Barrasso all voted to arm the same people who will turn on us with our own weapons one day.
For far too long, the debate over foreign policy has been expressed though the prism of the false choice between interventionists and isolationists. Those of us who oppose the interventions on behalf of the “Arab Spring” islamists are called isolationists. The reality is that we are Reagan conservatives who believe in a robust effort to repel Islamic terrorism. We don’t oppose interventions that are in America’s best interests. Quite the contrary, we want to kill as many Islamists before they kill us. But in the case of Libya, Syria, and Egypt, we are actually intervening on behalf of our enemies.
Granted that Syria is more complicated than the other two examples. Bashar Assad is a sworn enemy of the United States, the closest ally of Iran, and a prolific exporter of terror. In a perfect world, it would be great to overthrow him and stick it to Iran. But the reality is that the strongest elements of the insurgency are saturated with Al-Qaeda affiliated extremists, much like the insurgencies in other countries. Why place American money and weapons in the hands of people who will be just as adversarial to our interests as the current regime?
In the case of the Arab Spring, the best thing to do is root for injuries on both sides.
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