It is axiomatic, but we live in a messy world. Always have and will ever always be, as long as Homo sapiens exists. Scriptures pointed out several millennia ago that leopards do not change their spots…absent true salvation, of course.
We note that silver-spoon Randy (the spoiled boy child of Daddy Ron Paul) has begun bloviating about the Constitution again…now that the news cycle’s lens is pimping for Republican “strife” to color their pre-conceived opinions against President Trump.
The media provides “Junior” Paul with a camera angle, hoping against hope for a “gottcha” moment. Opportunism (or addiction) must be a genetic trait.
We speak, of course, about Junior’s pompous condemnation of the United States Navy’s punitive tomahawk strike against a Syrian airfield from which the rabid al-Assad committed genocidal war crimes. By using sarin against on his own civilians al-Assad has committed war crimes under customary international law.
Ah well, what’s a little genocide? It is comforting that the tried but not-so-true “Mouth of Rand” can be depended upon, like clockwork (he’s the new-aged McCain), whenever the media needs to foment Republican “division”. Prostitutes always seem to find a John. And “Junior”…he always seems to find a mike.
Still, “Junie” Paul couldn’t be more wrong.
President Trump is well within his constitutional authority to intercede with missile strikes against al-Assad’s maniacal neo-Ba’athist dictatorship in this instance. True, because signatory treaties are of course law…and under the Constitution too.
These United States indisputably are signatory to treaties and obligations which demand zero-tolerance regarding use of chemical munitions. President Trump is obliged to execute (which is to say uphold) the law…something his limp-wristed predecessor Mr. Obama rarely, if ever, did.
A basic revulsion of chemical weapons is part of our Western Civilization heritage. It has been the case for at least a century prior to our Independence. It is part of who we are; or at least who most of us are. As far back as 1675, Europe (namely France and the Holy Roman Empire) agreed to ban poisoned bullets via the Strasbourg Agreement.
Has Western Civilization always strictly adhered to such bans? Of course not. At Ypres, Belgium in 1915, World War One proved that much. Still, the West has long sought, via international agreements, to outlaw use of chemical munitions—and biological agents.
As early as 1868, the United States and The Netherlands were key countries moving Additional Articles to the 1864 Geneva Convention. Our nation was a principal international player in attempts through the 1899 Hague Convention to prohibit the use of “asphyxiating, poisonous or other gases, and of all analogous liquids, materials or devices” and “bacteriological methods of warfare”.
Through the follow-up 1907 Hague Convention, Teddy Roosevelt’s Administration took a leading role. Ultimately, after the horrors of World War One’s indiscriminate use of chemical weapons, the Geneva Protocol of 17 June 1925 was agreed.
“Customary international law” means that it is now understood that a general prohibition on chemical weapons and biological weapons exists. Planet-wide. As pointed out, these United States have long been bound to treaty law as a signatory. From the first formal statements on the laws of war and war crimes, these United States are inexorably bound to a responsibility to ensure that those who deploy these heinous weapons of mass destruction are swiftly brought to account. It is indeed, as President Trump stated, in our “vital national security interest” to do so.
We are bound to the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), the Preamble of which states: “Determined for the sake of all mankind, to exclude completely the possibility of the use of chemical weapons…”
For the sake of all mankind. Mr. Trump’s tomahawk strikes met the heart (and the obligation) of that determination. He did his part as the Executive.
The sad part is that, even though 192 nations (Syria included) are bound to exclude completely the possibility of the use of these heinous ordnances, willpower to do so has heretofore been nowhere evident. “Red lines” turn pale pink, if that.
To be clear about the gross violation of international law by the Ba’athist al-Assad (and his enabler, Russian KGB Putin), each signatory has general obligations under Article I of the CWC:
- Each State Party to this Convention undertakes never under any circumstances:
(a) To develop, produce, otherwise acquire, stockpile or retain chemical weapons, or transfer, directly or indirectly, chemical weapons to anyone;
(b) To use chemical weapons;
(c) To engage in any military preparations to use chemical weapons;
(d) To assist, encourage or induce, in any way, anyone to engage in any activity prohibited to a State Party under this Convention.
It is known (according to NATO consultant Dr. Jill Dekker) that Russia has helped Syria load anthrax in missile warheads. Putin is an enabler, and just as guilty. Worse still, Russia was bound as THE guarantor under the supposed agreements with the limp-wristed Mr. Obama, and as subsequently echoed and sworn to the world and the American people by both Mr. John Kerry and Ms. Susan Rice of Obama’s derelict Administration, that Syria held NO chemical weapons. They were eliminated…or so it was claimed.
At some point, after eight years of pusillanimous posing and outright lies by Mr. Obama, the interests of all mankind now demand forceful action. Let there be no mistake. “To whom much is given, much is required,” according to our Scriptures. America does indeed have obligations in the interest of all mankind. Mr. Trump was well within the law to intercede by a punitive strike to break the means of chemical weapons delivery in Syria.
Article XII of the CWC refers to redress…“where serious damage to the object and purpose of this Convention may result from activities prohibited under this Convention.” Clearly what the rabid al-Assad did to his people under those chemical weapons was just that. They were prohibited. And thus are war crimes.
The CWC contains within it all that is necessary for President Trump “to ensure completely” that mad dogs such as the Syrian al-Assad (or for that matter the Russian Mr. Putin) reconsider the extreme consequences of any further crimes against humanity. Their calculus must change.
Article XXII of the CWC is also clear. “The Annexes of the Convention shall not be subject to reservations incompatible with its object and purpose.”
Yet “incompatible reservations” is exactly what Randy Paul advocates…he basically would do nothing and walk away from America’s sworn treaty obligations to halt the use of chemical weapons where they occur.
What “Junior” Paul suggests is no less hypocritical than what the Bolivian Ambassador to the UN has just said, as he demands “multilateralism”. Curiously, as CP-Idaho reads the document, we find no reservations anywhere in our Constitution that refer to “multilateralism”…especially not when those reservations are incompatible with the interests of all mankind.
The Bolivian Ambassador blows hard because Mr. Trump stepped up to the humane obligations to exclude the possibility of the delivery of chemical weapons by Syrian aircraft on the top of their own civilians. Cries the Bolivian, why that is an “extremely, extremely serious violation of international law” as he shakes a copy of the United Nations Charter for Khrushchev-like emphasis.
Meanwhile, the internationally prohibited choking chemical clouds that an evil despotic regime dispatched against its people, against every known law on this planet, are to be ignored? The world has talked and talked…for years now regarding al-Assad. It is time to execute the law.
The President’s job (in fact his sole purpose) is to enforce the law. Mr. Trump did so. That’s the bottom line.
Sunshine patriot, the entitled “Junior” Paul, as the heir of an equally do-nothing Libertarian like his Daddy Paul, prostrates himself for the ephemeral attention of the media. Ego addictions are difficult to kick. Just ask Obama.
Perhaps Junior should check into a rehab center (or a salon) and fix his character flaws. Maybe they will also offer him a remedial course in reading and comprehension. Here’s an idea: consider Boliva.