By Frank Lewis
August 31, 2013
PDT Staff Writer
This week, U.S. Representative Brad Wenstrup, R-Cincinnati, joined with 115 members of Congress calling on President Obama to consult with Congress before committing U.S. military assets in Syria. Wenstrup, an Iraq War veteran, said he is seeking to ensure that clear objectives are outlined prior to the use of military force.
“The President has an obligation to Congress and the American people to lay out the case for a strike in Syria prior to taking military action. With any military mission, we have to ask ourselves what we want to accomplish and how we are planning to achieve our stated goal,” Wenstrup said.
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is accused by the administration of using chemical weapons on civilian populations in his own country, and Wenstrup says any response by the U.S. must be carefully weighed against national security interests.
“The loss of life in Syria is tragic, and any use of chemical weapons against civilians is reprehensible,” Wenstrup said. “I do not support ‘boots on the ground’ in Syria, but I am open to evaluating other possible actions by the United States in response to Assad’s actions. Additionally, I believe that we are well positioned to provide humanitarian assistance to the millions of refugees fleeing from this two-year conflict.”
Wenstrup is a member of the House Armed Services and the Veterans Affairs committees, as well as a Lieutenant Colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve. He served in Iraq as a combat surgeon from 2005 to 2006.
Meanwhile, House Speaker John Boehner, R-West Chester, says Obama should inform American citizens as well as Congress why an attack on Syria would protect national security. Both U.S. Senators from Ohio, Sherrod Brown and Rob Portman have said actions should include international input.
Frank Lewis may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 252, or at firstname.lastname@example.org. For breaking news, follow Frank on Twitter @FrankLewisPDT.