The Republican National Convention was held this week, and while your newsfeed was probably filled with Ted Cruz and Melania Trump, there were a lot of other notable speeches, some of which fell under the theme “Make America Safe Again,” and served as a reminder of what is wrong with the United States’ foreign policy.
From Iowa Sen. Joni Ernst who said, “According to the FBI, ISIS is present in all 50 states,” to retired Army Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn who said, “The radicalization of islam and its barbaric cause that uses modernity to influence potentially millions around the world to join their cause should keep us all up at night,” and “we must take seriously the possibility that these enemies have weapons of mass destruction and intend to use them,” the sense of fear-mongering was strong on the first night of the RNC.
So, they’re saying that America isn’t safe, and yet around the same time that these speeches were being given Monday night, a United States airstrike hit a Syrian village killing 117 people. Reports from the activists on the ground claim that at least 73 of those killed were civilians, and 35 of those civilians were children.
“The death toll is 117. We could document [the identity of] 73 civilians including 35 children and 20 women. The rest of the dead bodies are charred, or have been reduced to shreds,” Adnan al-Housen, an activist from Manbij, told The Guardian.
Then on Tuesday, a video was posted online showing a group of Syrian rebels beheading a 12-year-old Palestinian boy. These rebels are from the Nour al-Din al-Zinki Movement, one of the many groups who have received funding and training from the United States, and they are further proof that the method of backing Syrian rebels in order to defeat ISIS is having the opposite effect.
The thing is, if the GOP really wanted to make America safe, they would realize that using a barrage of drone strikes that lead to civilian causalities and spending billions of dollars to fund Syrian rebels aren’t working. Many Republicans are quick to blame President Obama and to say that Hillary Clinton would continue his policies, and while they’re not wrong, I would think that if they were really looking for an answer to the problem, they would admit that what made America “unsafe” to begin started long before the Obama administration, and was a result of years of the United States overthrowing dictators in the Middle East and acting as there wouldn’t be consequences.