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What to Do About Syria

Vital U.S. interests are at stake.

Sep 16, 2013, Vol. 19, No. 02 • By FREDERICK W. KAGAN
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Preventing Assad from using his chemical weapons while robustly supporting the FSA also offers the best hope of securing America’s other two interests in Syria—depriving Iran of its forward staging area in the Levant and preventing al Qaeda from establishing a safe haven there. Unless Americans want to send a large army into Syria—which no one is advocating—this is, in fact, the only strategy that offers any hope. One can well argue about the scope and scale of the air campaign and the amount and kind of support the United States should provide to the opposition, and those arguments are important. But they should not be allowed to obscure the basic facts that the security of Americans is profoundly threatened by events in Syria and that inaction will only increase that threat.

Frederick W. Kagan is a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute and director of AEI’s Critical Threats Project.

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