President Barack Obama is receiving far more support for the proposed execution of military action against the regime of President Bashar al-Assad in Syria than he did during the 2011 intervention in Libya. On Tuesday, both Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-Ohio) and Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) endorsed bombing Syria.
Boehner stated Tuesday, "The use of these weapons has to be responded to, and only the United States has the capability and capacity to stop Assad and to warn others around the world that this type of behavior is not going to be tolerated."
Obama’s call for military intervention is related to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s use of chemical weapons in the country’s ongoing civil war. During the NATO-led operation against Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, Boehner did not show his support because he felt Obama had not made a convincing case to Congress and the American people.
This opinion marks a drastic change from Boehner's reaction to Obama’s military in Libya. The House of Representatives voted strongly against authorizing the war in Libya, primarily due to lack of national interest. In Syria, the war is more complex as it involves the threat of chemical warfare being used on other nations.
People have strong reactions to chemical attacks, especially after 13,000 deaths have been reported since the start of the uprising. If a nation’s government can unleash a chemical warfare on its citizens, what will stop them from executing such a violent attack on other nations? Republicans like Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Cantor have backed Obama’s plan to end the warfare in Syria.
Obama is waiting on approval from the House and Senate to vote on military action in Syria. This is expected to occur next week. Given the uphill support from conservatives, approval to improve the social, political, and economic conditions in Syria looks promising.