Bachmann: Military strike on Syria ‘would only make the situation worse’

REUTERS/File/Jonathan Ernst
A “United States kinetic strike would only make the situation worse in Syria,” said Rep. Michele Bachmann.

WASHINGTON — Rep. Michele Bachmann has long opposed any type of United States intervention in the Syrian civil war, and earlier this week announced she’ll vote against any potential military strike there.

Bachmann said Thursday she now has a new interest group backing her up: Middle Eastern heads of state.

Bachmann said she’s met with several Middle East leaders during a congressional delegation trip this week (Bachmann is still on the trip and said she couldn’t go into details for security reasons). Their message, she said, has been that there is a way to oust Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and establish a new, cooperative government.

But a “United States kinetic strike would only make the situation worse in Syria,” she said, and open the door to radical groups like al-Qaeda or the Muslim Brotherhood taking over. If the United States gets involved, she said, the situation could crumble further and spill into other parts of the region.

“Some of these heads of states say they have identified a more stable, solid element that could go in,” she said in an interview. “It wouldn’t be through kinetic force. It would be through pressure, not just from the United States, but from other countries, essentially working a deal with [Russian President Vladimir] Putin, so that there is a new regime that goes in, but one that brings stability to that country.”

Bachmann, along with Democratic Rep. Rick Nolan, has been one of the most outspoken Minnesota opponents of intervening in Syria at all. President Obama has asked Congress to authorize a military strike there after a chemical weapons attack in August, but the question has divided lawmakers. From Minnesota, Bachmann, Nolan and Democratic Rep. Collin Peterson have said they’ll vote no; Democratic Sen. Al Franken and Reps. Keith Ellison and Betty McCollum have indicated they’ll support the measure.

But Bachmann said Thursday that Americans are “war weary” and that getting involved in the Syrian civil war is “a very bad call” from the Obama administration.

“From a United States perspective, the very first question that has to be answered is, number one: What is the identifiable, vital American national security interest?” she said. “Well, there isn’t one. You can’t find one. Number two: We have to ask, what is our plan for victory? And in the case of defeat, what’s our plan for exit? None of that has been addressed.”

Devin Henry can be reached at dhenry@minnpost.com. 

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Comments (11)

  1. Submitted by rolf westgard on 09/05/2013 - 06:35 pm.

    Can’t believe it

    I never thought I would agree with Bachmann on anything.

  2. Submitted by chuck holtman on 09/05/2013 - 06:54 pm.

    My god. I agree with Michele Bachmann.

    The messiah should appear momentarily.

  3. Submitted by James Hamilton on 09/05/2013 - 07:05 pm.

    I’ll be damned

    I agree with her, even though she got the first question wrong: What’s the legal basis for going to war?

  4. Submitted by Ray Schoch on 09/05/2013 - 08:28 pm.

    Me, too

    I have to echo the first 3 comments. I’m stunned. Maybe I should go buy that PowerBall ticket…

  5. Submitted by Paul Brandon on 09/05/2013 - 08:30 pm.

    Agreed

    that her basic premise is more rational than usual.
    However, she’s still vague on specifics.
    Besides being Pals with Putin and the oil sheiks, what is her mechanism for convincing Assad to leave and providing “a new, cooperative government”?

  6. Submitted by Bill Schletzer on 09/06/2013 - 06:58 am.

    the usual Bachamann

    Does anyone believe she would be opposed to this strike if the president were a Republican? This is the standard ultra-partisan Bachmann.

  7. Submitted by David Frenkel on 09/06/2013 - 11:01 am.

    Saudi Arabia

    Not sure who exactly Bachmann has been talking to but Saudi Arabia has come out in favor of the US bombing Syria. Aside from Isreal, Saudi Arabia is the largest US ally in the middle east.

  8. Submitted by Kevin Sweeney on 09/06/2013 - 11:05 am.

    Can you believe her?

    So some unnamed Middle East leaders told Bachmann this would be a bad idea, and she believed them. I recall when a mother told Bachmann her daughter became mentally retarded after being vaccinated with the HPV vaccine. Bachmann believed her too.

  9. Submitted by Jan Menke on 09/06/2013 - 12:32 pm.

    Too Long on the Tilt-A-Whirl

    Can any tell me why — even though people with far more gravitas than this Space Queen will ever have, have made the same point — why I should give a good rats ass about her reactionary rants and why they’re even worthy of publication?

  10. Submitted by Steve Hoffman on 09/06/2013 - 02:05 pm.

    Experienced

    Well, if there’s anyone who knows anything about making things worse, it’s our Michele.

  11. Submitted by Gerald Greupner on 09/10/2013 - 03:18 pm.

    MB

    More likely she has been talking to some Middle Eastern cab drivers. I cannot believe heads of any state would take her very seriously.

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