Rand Paul delivers response to Obama’s Syria speech

Rand Paul

In an effort to win over the antiwar liberals standing in his way and scare conservatives into taking his side, President Barack Obama delivered a speech regarding Syria that might have left millions of Americans wondering whether their President was just trying to play tough to intimidate critics.

The calls for action as the President described the horrors Syrians have been exposed to during the attack with chemical weapons were powerful, but somehow misleading in light of recent reports regarding the source of the gas used in the attack. According to The Guardian, high-level German intelligence agencies investigated the sources of the chemical attack near Damascus and found no conclusive evidence connecting the strike to Bashar al-Assad’s regime.

His speech was also notable for some of his remarks regarding our role in the international community. After concluding that the United States should act as a global security force and make sure international agreements are being observed, President Obama also claimed he did not wish to see America as the world’s police force. While some skeptics might have felt compelled to back Obama and support U.S. interference with Syria after the speech, some lawmakers remained unconvinced.

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) was one of them.

Rand Paul made a video response to the President’s speech to remind the nation of this administration’s failure to identify a real solution to the conflict in Syria. According to the Senator, attacking Assad could lead to dreadful consequences, pushing the regime to “resort to chemical weapons in an expanded fashion.”

The attack, Sen. Paul claimed, could cause further collateral damage and lead to a direct attack against Israel coming from Assad’s regime. Russia and Iran could also become more directly involved, forcing the U.S. into an even greater conflict. During Sen. Paul’s speech, Americans were urged to remember that the attack could also cause the region to become unstable, making it more likely for refugees to stream into Jordan and putting the lives of millions of innocents in danger.


Rand Paul reminded the nation that Russia’s diplomatic offer came after a year of talks between Russia and the U.S. concerning Syria. According to Paul “the chance for diplomacy would not have occurred without strong voices against an immediate bombing campaign.” While claiming that the diplomatic option is a good thing, Sen. Paul reminded viewers that the U.S. must proceed with caution. If we had acted aggressively and proceeded with the strikes “we wouldn’t be looking at a possible solution today.”

Sen. Paul also addressed President Obama’s statement concerning the possibility of having the U.S. being involved in the Syrian conflict more aggressively without any need for Congressional approval:

“The President maintains that he still has the power to initiate war. This is untrue. The Constitution gave the power to declare war to Congress. James Madison wrote that the “Constitution supposes, what history demonstrates, that the executive is the branch most prone to war. Therefore the Constitution, with studied care, vested the power to declare war in the legislature.””

President Obama continues to struggle to pitch any type of direct involvement with Syria to Congress. Sen. Paul’s words were clear: “I will not vote to send my son, your son, or anyone’s daughter to war unless a compelling American interest is present. I am not convinced that we have a compelling interest in the Syrian civil war,” and he’s not the only lawmaker that finds this administration’s case for intervention extremely weak.

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