History weighs heavily on the decision making process for many lawmakers now considering a military strike against the Syrian regime. While some advised caution to avoid extended involvement as seen in Iraq and Afghanistan, Secretary of State John Kerry on Monday compared inaction to the 1938 Munich Pact, which ceded control of part of Czechoslovakia to Nazi Germany.
At least one Democratic lawmaker, however, is unmoved by the Munich analogy.
“I’m sick and tired of stupid historical metaphors that have nothing to do with this,” said Democratic Rep. Alan Grayson on MSNBC Tuesday. “I don’t think that there are many people alive who remember Munich right now, and properly so. That has nothing to do with this.”
“Let’s look at the facts of this situation. This whole situation has nothing to do with us–not a single American has been attacked, not any one of our allies has been attacked. This is a civil war, and it’s becoming a proxy war between Sunni fundamentalists and Shiite fundamentalists, neither one of whom wish us well. In addition to that, the attack that’s being contemplated won’t do any good; we’re not going to get rid of Assad through this attack, we’re not going to disarm him through this attack, we’re not going to do anything significant to prevent him from doing exactly what he may have done before.”
The Florida lawmaker advocated instead for increasing humanitarian aid to Syrian refugees, now numbering at two million, according the United Nations. He added that as far as historical analogies go, Iraq and Afghanistan would be “more relevant than Munich.”
Grayson, along with other members of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, will hear testimony on the need for military intervention in Syria from Secretary of State John Kerry on Wednesday. According to an analysis from the Washington Post, only 16 House lawmakers are so far in favor of military action, 36 are against it, 67 are leaning no, and 93 are undecided.