Former Democratic Rep. Jane Harman said Thursday that the civil war in Syria has reached a “tipping point” and that it is time for the United States to get more involved in the conflict.
Mrs. Harman, who now heads the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, said, “this is a world problem” now that more than 70,000 have died, more than 2 million people are displaced inside Syria and 1 million are displaced outside the Middle Eastern nation.
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“I think we have reached a tipping point,” Mrs. Harman said, adding that she started out cautiously about no U.S. involvement. “But this opposition, or at least what is good about at, has got to get more support from the United States, and it has to be known that we are helping.”
Mrs. Harman did not say what that help would look like, but her comments did come on the heels of a similar message from former Sen. Joe Lieberman, the Democrat-turned-independent who ran for vice president with Al Gore in 2000.
“What is required now is a limited campaign of U.S.-led air strikes to neutralize Assad’s planes, helicopters and ballistic missiles, which are being used to terrorize the Syrian population,” Mr. Lieberman said in a Wall Street Journal op-ed posted on the newspaper’s website Tuesday evening. “Taking such a step would not require the U.S. to act unilaterally, nor would it involve any American boots on the ground.”
The Obama administration has been reluctant to arm rebel forces out of fear that the weapons might land in the hands of anti-American groups and terrorists, and could pull the U.S. into a proxy war.