Shorter Version of Spinney on Syria: Don't Do It

"Precise," "cheap" wars do not work out as promised or planned.

A little while ago I put up a long item on Chuck Spinney's cautions against a precision or punitive bombing campaign in Syria.

I hope you'll read it, but just in case here is the Executive Summary:

1. It has become far too cheap and easy for the United States to begin bombing or drone-attacking other countries.

2. In the long run, this almost never works out well, even when the original rationale for "doing something" seems compelling, as with Syria.

3. Thus there should be a very strong burden of proof on people calling for strikes, to show that this is the only answer (not just the easiest one), and that it will do more good than harm. I will resist proposing that the burden of proof be doubled for people who recommended war in Iraq.

Check Spinney's article or my summary for more. Image source here, with fascinating background from Alexis Madrigal here.