The US has just launched 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles on a Syrian airfield, killing at least 6 soldiers. The attacks come in response to a recent chemical weaponry usage by the Assad regime that resulted in at least 85 very painful deaths. The effects of Sarin usage has since been seen in videos and pictures coming out of Syria showing helpless and almost immobile victims. Some of this imagery is of children who seem to have uncontrollable fits. Nikki Haley, the US ambassador to the UN carried some of these pictures with her as she warned the UN to act. In its inability to do so, US will strike. And it has.

The narrative in social media against the attacks have mostly been negative. Most, if not all compare Trump’s press statement with his words on refugees. The country’s care for the lives lost after the chemical attack have been compared to the disregard for the many lives who are now restricted from entering the US. This criticism has been mostly redundant if not completely wrong.

Somehow, the world at large, seems to be addicted to the argument strategy of ‘what about this’. Such arguments fall short of putting in context the actual problem at hand. Many times, issues with no resemblances to each other are meshed in, only to form ridiculous claims by the authors. It also undermines the issues prevalent in either of the two instances not providing a serious discourse to ponder over. Hence, those comparing the strikes to Trump’s refugee ban, do so in bad taste.

The strikes are not the best option but, for now as they were for several years, the necessary option. Syrian network for human rights confirms that from the beginning of the uprising till March 2017, a total of 207,000 civilians have been killed including 24, 000 children and 23, 000 females. Of these, 94% have died due to strikes and aggressive attacks from the Syrian-Iranian-Russian alliance.  Syrian forces, since the beginning have conducted numerous inhumane responses to civilian uprising using armory and other brutal tactics. The Syrian space has been given freedom to encourage and nurture Islamist groups who continue to wage sectarian wars while being proxies to the infamous Islamic regimes. The influx of militant action has resulted in some 11 million refugees who’ve run away from the violence. Within Syria, 6.3 million people are displaced and 13.5 million are in desperate need of humanitarian assistance. Considering all of this, it is shameful for the world at large to not intervene.

Syrian leader Bashar Al-Assad violated numerous international commitments in order to stay in power. With the use of chemical weaponry, he has shown complete disregard for the ban on chemical weapons imposed after World War 1. As the sole super power of the world, it is both it prerogative and duty to ensure that such commitments are followed through. For doing that, the actions of America must be commended. However, the war is far from over and America’s involvement only makes the situation even more murkier.

With the strikes, America has risked worsening relations with Russia who continue to explicitly support Assad along with Iran. Moreover, it has now, for the first time since the uprising, attacked President Assad’s forces. With these strikes, now it has become engaged with two parties, ISIS and Assad. Ofcourse this leads to a problem which can result in even more casualties. Differentiating the many players in the dense field of Syria is in itself impossible. Moreover, with time, new players and interest groups continue to emerge; all seeking to gain from the chaos that is Syria. Of course, the US and the world at large is still far from forgetting the debacles of the two wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Libya too gives lessons on how taking away a dictator is not an option for it results in a power vacuum. Regimes such as Hosni Mubarak’s, Gaddafi’s and Assad’s do not give time and space for democratic forces to develop leaving them incapable to take over the burden of running the country once the dictators leave. This is exactly what has happened in Syria and if and when Assad is replaced, the results would be the same.

The move forward is not a simple one. There needs to be strict diplomacy to rid the Syrian conflict from power players who are bent upon waging proxy wars. Russia must be brought to the table and convinced to cease from supporting Assad. Assad, on the other hand needs to be schooled to give form and weight to the opinion to the views of his people. All of this sounds impossible in this scenario but it is the only way. How the players reach this point in the future is for time to tell.