Posted at: 08/29/2013 6:22 PM
By: Bill Lambdin
ALBANY – All indications are the Obama administration is preparing some military response against the Syrian government, probably soon.
Our local congressmen have strong reservations, and in one case outright opposition to using force.
In the definitely opposed column is a 29-year army veteran.
Chris Gibson went in as a Private, retired as a Colonel and Brigade Commander for the 82nd Airborne in Iraq.
He says we should not be the world's policeman. “What we do, will it make a positive difference, will it help resolve the Civil War there? I don’t believe military action will help. In fact, based on my experience and my judgment, I believe it will make it worse,” says Gibson.
North Country Democrat Bill Owens also opposes putting American boots on the ground in Syria, but says he can support some other more limited uses of the U.S. military to punish the Syrian government for their use of chemical weapons, but he has not yet been briefed, so he doesn't know specifically what the administration plans to do.
“I thought (the Libyan situation) was a limited action. We did not become enganged in any way on the ground, and we removed ourselves from the process after accomplishing the stated objective,” says Owens.
Congressman Paul Tonko is usually a strong supporter of the Obama administration but not on this issue.
“At this point, I would not be in favor of a missile launch. There are ways to punish without going to an air attack and boots on the ground. I still hope that diplomacy can be the call to action here,” says Tonko.
NewsChannel 13 also contacted Sentaor Chuck Schumer's office for his response to the conflict in Syria. The senator says he will hold off on commenting until after Thursday night’s briefing from the president.