Tidewater Libertarian Party Position on Syrian Issue

The Tidewater Libertarian Party has released the following statement:


Authority for Military Action


Our Constitution vests the Congress with the sole power to authorize acts of war. The form of that authorization is not specified. In 1973, the Congress, recognizing that a more rapid response might in some cases be necessary in the modern world, passed the War Powers Resolution which gives the President authorization to act prior to Congressional action under certain very limited circumstances.

Those circumstances are limited to an attack, or imminent attack on the United States, its possessions, and its forces abroad, and in compliance with the terms of ratified mutual defense treaties. None of these conditions apply in the case of the Syrian Civil War.

The UN Convention on Chemical Weapons applies only to its signatories and provides no authority for enforcement of its terms on non-signatories like Syria.

There is thus no authority for the President of the United States to order the use of force against the Syrian regime unless Congress passes an appropriate resolution.

We call upon Congress to assert its authority by immediately impeaching the President should such an unlawful use of military force be ordered by the President.

No Cause for War


While Congress does have the power to authorize war absent an attack on the United States, that power should be exercised only with great restraint.

The first requirement should be a certainty that the action is just. With respect to the use of chemical weapons in Syria, that certainty does not exist. While there is reasonable evidence that chemical weapons were released, the evidence as equally supports use by one or more of the rebel factions, use by a rogue element of the regime, or inadvertent dispersal of chemical weapons stores by conventional military attack as it does intentional and centrally directed use by the regime.

We see no national interests to be served by the US intervening in this civil war. Recent experience in the Middle East in Egypt and Libya demonstrates that replacement of an autocratic regime with a chaotic failed state does not serve our interests or those of the citizens of the regime.

We have no certainty which of the rebel factions will ultimately gain power or if those factions are not worse for our interests and their people than the current regime. Evidence shows many of the rebel factions are every bit as brutal as the current regime and some have close ties to terrorist organizations.

Those things considered, we urge Congress to refuse to authorize military action in Syria or elsewhere in the Middle East.

One Response to Tidewater Libertarian Party Position on Syrian Issue

  1. Warren E. Boisselle says:

    A well informed and rational opinion. Thank you.

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