A reader named Eddie offered a link to a video that has left me confused and – yes – frightened. Of course, I have no idea who made the video or why, and whether these people have any credibility, but… But what if they are right?
People say all kinds of outlandish things, and when they have access to a medium like the Internet, where they can mask their identities with little effort, they really let their imaginations run rampant.
But… But what if some of these crazies are right?
I certainly have no way of verifying their claims. How, for example am I to confirm or refute the charge that it was the rebels who used nerve gas in Syria, and that the gas was smuggled into Syria with the knowledge and consent of the American government?
Russia’s ambassador to the United Nations says Syrian rebels had likely used the nerve gas in that deadly attack near Aleppo in March. In Eddie’s video, the narrator cites the Snowden revelations as evidence that nerve gas was provided to the rebels by agents in Qatar.
The argument here is that the attack was not one more atrocity committed by dictator Assad but a cold-blooded ploy to draw America and the West into the conflict on the side of the rebels. And, unless my ears betrayed me, the video implies the Obama Administration was in on the conspiracy.
Could the video possibly be right?
I can’t pick up the phone and call President Obama. And if I could, he would certainly not confide state secrets to a lowly blogger like me.
If there is anyone I trust, it is President Obama. I cannot think the father of Sasha and Malia (pictured above, right, with the First Lady) could be complicit in the horror of a nerve gas attack on other people’s children.
I feel disloyal even entertaining the possibility. But…
But President Obama has not hesitated to send drones to kill terrorists, and in some cases, innocent families were killed in the strikes. It makes no difference to me that they were “casualties of war.” I have a low tolerance for the concept of “collateral damage.”
Others among my heroes have been accused of similar deceptions in the past – Winston Churchill and Franklin Roosevelt for example.
I have read that, persuaded by Churchill, Roosevelt sacrificed the lives of American servicemen at Pearl Harbor to a Japanese preemptive-attack – an attack that they knew was coming – to provide a reason for America’s entry into World War II.
Of course, America saved the free world by coming to the aid of a beleaguered Europe. Of course, the Nazis were the very incarnation of Evil – a brutish force responsible for the worst atrocities in history. Of course, Churchill and Roosevelt acted for the “Greater Good.”
But I have trouble with the idea that it’s OK to sacrifice “the few” to save “the many.”
To me, every life is precious – especially the life of a child.
I am determined to hold fast to my belief that Barack Obama – the husband, the father and, yes, the president – shares this view. I will not be swayed by Eddie’s video.
I have no evidence to give you to refute the video’s terrifying accusations.
All I have is blind faith.