An Illegal Duty
by fredgagnon7 on September 9, 2013 - 8:53pm
An illegal duty
As everyone knows today, a terrible crime in Syria occurred on August 21st. In fact, Syrian dictator Bashar Assad used chemical weapons on his own people in regions kept by the rebels. This attack resulted in the deaths of thousand of victims that were innocent citizens, which brought up numerous concerns from people all around the world.
The news article that I chose clearly debates on whether or not the Americans have the legal right to attack the Syrian government for their act of violence upon their own community. Several international law observers describe that it is illegal for the U.S. to instantly attack the Syria for numerous reasons. First, it is important to understand that the United Nation’s charter forbids a country from attacking another country if it is not for self-defense or without the approval of the UN. Secondly, the article suggests that attacking the Syria without the United Nation’s authorization would break some of their primary principles and credibility of this international organization. Law observers also claim that “ No state may play police officer to the world on its own say-so.’’
On the other hand, the author also explains that in 2005, the UN member states adopted a political regulation titled ¨Responsibility to Protect¨. This movement believes that military action could be used to protect a population from a mass murder event. Even if this doctrine could be applicable for this particular case, Oona Hathaway, a Yale Law School professor, affirms that Security Council Charter remains with greater power. Therefore, it would be still considered as an illegal act to attack the Syria without the permission of the United Nation.
We can clearly see that theirs is not clear-cut solution for this tragedy due to the numerous conflicting ethical principles. Relativists believe that Syria should solve their problem on their own or with the help of the U.N. without any other interventions from outer countries. They consider that they are able to make the right decision to solve their national problem. However, democratic countries witnessing this horrible crime are judging this as inacceptable, following more ethical principle and values based on equality, justice and peace. As a result, they think that it is in their responsibility to intervene in this conflict. They believe in their countries’ cultural and moral code of ethics, imposing that this conflict should be solved as quickly as possible.
From my beliefs, general countries should deal with their problem without the help of third parties. Nevertheless, in this particular case, thousands of innocent victims were killed in an unforgivable way, thus pushing me to believe that a massive intervention from other countries would be necessary. The use of chemical weapons should not be taken lightly, and some major consequences attributed to the concerned country should stem from this tragedy. If we let this disaster unnoticed, we are setting ourselves up to a risky future. The people have to be aware that this kind of solution is neither ethical nor permitted around the world, and should be taken seriously. Should we wait for the next attack leading to the deaths of other innocent citizens or put forth an intervention plan immediately to avoid any future human catastrophic events? Those dilemmas bring up to ask ourselves: is it possible for a legal action to be unethical? And can a qualified illegal action be considered ethical?