The streets of Homs in Syria are slowly becoming caked in the blood of people whose only offense is that they prefer freedom to tyranny, as the tyrant shows his love for "his" people by showering them with a fusillade of rockets and mortars. Not unlike Libya in the recent past, a people seek to throw off the yolk of oppression, and are willing to fight if that is their only recourse. But there is fighting for freedom and then there is being an animal penned for the slaughter, and right now freedom lasts only as long as the whistling shriek of the shells.
The Syrian government refuses all calls to remove itself from power. Any deals brokered to do so are quickly cast aside or forgotten. The Arab League seems powerless to act. Certain members of the United Nations obstinately refuse to acknowledge the dying shrieks that ring forth amid the shuddering blasts that fill the town. Condemnation is rife, but action is nigh invisible. No sanctions, no blockade, can shield a populace from the hellish fury of a dictator bent on retaining power.
It is perhaps incumbent upon the United States to once more be forced to take the lead, as it is ever so. Surely, there will be nattering in many corners by some, who will first chastise us for doing nothing then chastise us again for taking action. But, do we dare stand idly by and let innocents suffer? No one has ever handed us a badge, but many have looked to us in the past to take up the mantle of protector of freedom and defender of liberty. There can be only be hand-wringing in engaging in another conflict, but there can be no peace while blood is spilled in the name of tyranny.
What to do? We must come to a decision soon. Where we wish to keep the sword, we do so with the tacit knowledge that we will be called upon to wield it. We must be unwilling, we must be reticent, lest we become enamored of our power, but the time comes when other considerations must be laid aside and the greater good must step to the fore. We cannot allow people to die where we can do something to stop it. Let it be that we take action now, and when it is done, take that same energy of destruction and turn it to energy of construction. A people cry out; how can we not answer?