Bombs exploding, desert sand, AK-47s, RPGs and terrorists have taken over the news in the last twenty years. The Middle East has been a hot topic for as long as I can remember. Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Israel, Afghanistan, 9/11, Al Qaeda, and Arab Spring all come to mind when I think of the Middle East. The most current hotspot of activity is Syria. Syria has been in a civil war since 2011 between dictator Bashar Al-Assad and rebels. Since the start of the war, over 100,000 people have lost their lives and well over a million have been forced to relocate due to the fighting (Sharwood). In August of this year, over a thousand people were gassed with sarin, a chemical nerve agent that causes choking, burns, partial blindness, and skin falling off (“Chemical Weapons”). It is unclear at the moment who committed this atrocity, some claim it was Assad and others say the rebels used these weapons (Sharwood). You might be wondering, “What’s the big deal if chemical weapons were used? So many have already died, why is everyone making such a big deal about these one thousand?” Well, over one million troops were harmed by chlorine and mustard gas in World War I, triggering a barrage of public. The Geneva Convention outlawed the gasses in 1925 due to their brutal and horrifying effects (“Chemical Weapons”). So, in an attempt to enforce this mandate and also to keep the weapons from spreading to other Middle Eastern countries, Obama has been pushing for a military strike to bomb supposed stockpiles of chemical weapons. But is it even legal to intervene in another country’s civil war like that? And would bombing a country’s ammunition depots (that may or may not have chemical weapons) be a good choice for international diplomacy? The U.N. charter is very particular when it comes to justifying war. “The international legal regime on the use of force is therefore constituted at the intersection of Articles 2(4), 39, and 51 of the UN Charter: the use of force by states...
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