Syria: It’s a complicated issue and there are strong arguments on both sides


The XYZ has always been a forum for differing opinions, and the US airstrike on Syria in response to the alleged use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime is no exception.

You can read some excellent arguments made against Trump’s actions by Moses Apostaticus here for The XYZ, and here for The Daily Caller. He argues strongly that the intelligence which led to the strike was compromised, and that the long-term effects of the action, and the potential for regime change in Syria and a major war with Russia, could be the decline and fall of the West.

I have analysed the historical situation which led to the current crisis here and argue that Trump is making a point; ie, the word of the President of the United States of America means something again, and you mess with the United States at your peril. I have also whacked together a highly entertaining tabloid here, where I float the suggestion that Trump is playing 4D chess.

Many of these contrary arguments are reflected in the following debate between Stefan Molyneux and Bill Mitchell:

Both have been key backers of Donald Trump, and they both backed him early. Molyneux was particularly effective in influencing public opinion due to the stupendous size of his audience. Mitchell carries clout because he called the election result correctly from the very beginning; he understood the power of Trump’s persuasive technics and the depth of his strategic thinking.

Molyneux shares Moses’ skepticism regarding the validity of the intelligence regarding the use of chemical weapons, while I agree with Mitchell that Trump is making a strong impression early, and that this is paying off already with cooperation from China in confronting North Korea.

(You can read analysis of the looming confrontation with North Korea from Greg Sheridan here, who points out the irony in Trump’s strategy: “Avoid a nuclear holocaust and we won’t press so hard on beef exports?”)

Both Molyneux and Mitchell make arguments which I agree and disagree with. For example, although I agree with Mitchell that it is important to send strong signals with decisive military action, and that regime change is not Trump’s endgame – his endgame is safe zones and an end to the refugee crisis – I agree with Molyneux, not Mitchell, that the USA should not be the world’s policeman. However, I disagree with Molyneux’s reason for this – that this would make the world a safer place; I believe a less interventionist USA would make the world more unstable, but the world needs a little bit of instability to make it appreciate again the occasional bad that comes with the good that is American global leadership.

What is most striking then, is that two extremely intelligent people who agree on 95% of the information they discuss, and whose political principles coincide very strongly, can arrange the information in different ways to reach starkly differing conclusions. This for me is encouraging, given that the old right and new right are currently divided: those who disagree with Trump’s action and no longer support Trump; those who disagree with Trump but still support him; and those who agree with his actions and support him. I believe that all three positions are based on principle, something which distinguishes us from the regressive left. The debate between Molyneux and Mitchell gets quite heated, but always remains respectful, and sticks to the facts; again an advantage we have over the left.

The one thing we can take from the left is the determination to always come together to face the common enemy. Regardless of whether or not you support Trump and/or his actions, those of us opposed to the regressive left generally still want the government to leave us alone but protect our borders, want an end to the political correctness and identity politics which is dividing us, and well, no more white genocide.

You can let The XYZ know quantitatively what you think of Trump’s actions in the Viewer Poll below, and qualitatively in the comments section.

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