Crisis in Syria

Politics Hitting Close to Home or a Student Body Lost in the Chaos?

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David Blair

A man cradles the body of a dead child amongst the bodies of dozens of others in Damascus

The past few weeks have been a political battlefield in congress with President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry desperately attempt to hash out a proper response to the use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime in Syria, on civilians and counter regime forces. Images coming out of the event have quickly circulated through social media.  Obama’s address on September 11, 2013 focused largely on the ethics of using chemical weapons. Ian Graham, sophomore, stated on the issue of chemical weapons, “Chemical weapons are absolutely out of the question. World Leaders have time and time again denounced chemical weaponry and using them is grounds for international punishment.” Jason Pauli, senior, counters this position with, “Chemical weapons have some form of use in a frame of war, the use on civilians is obviously morally wrong. But chemical weapons in general should not be the priority to dismantle.”

The address went on to formally renounce America’s unilateral approach to policing the world, and a call for multilateral support against the Assad regime’s use of chemical weapons. Anna Ringuette, Junior, said on the topic of her awareness on the issues in Syria that, “In debate this year we are focusing a lot on foreign policy with Cuba but you would be surprised how the Syria situation is affecting the grand scheme of the debate season.” Now the question is what happens next? U.S and Russia have been engaging in a small partnership in a grand attempt to convince Assad to remove the chemical weapons from Syrian soil and turn them over to the United Nations. But the relationship has been rocky with some Russian ambassadors claiming a lot of bullying on the behalf of the United States.

Overwhelmingly though, the student body is unaware of the crisis on Syria. Various responses ranged anywhere from, “I have no clue about what is going in Syria,” to, “Isn’t it about oil? It always seems to be about oil.” This lack of knowledge shows how out of touch a majority of our student body is with issues in the world outside of West Bloomfield.

My question to the student body is, how aware of issues are you outside of West Bloomfield? Leave a comment below and give your thoughts on the crisis in Syria as well as other issues occurring in the world.

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