With the growing carnage inflicted on the civilian population by Assad’s government, Syria’s twenty-one-month old political and humanitarian crisis does not seem to show any sign of progress. Hundreds of people, including women and children, are slaughtered every week in what the international community describes as a «massacre» of the syrian population. The establishment of human rights as a key component of international politics has allowed external actors to scrutinize and judge Assad regime’s poor treatment of its own people. Assad’s response has been one of inflexible negation, refusing any sort of cooperation with the international community whatsoever. Thus, the dilemma of the Syrian conflict is how much longer the
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While there is little evidence that those in favor of an intervention are stimulated by anything other than the desire to safeguard the civilian population from the criminal acts of the Assad regime, many international observers will see this just as another effort at regime change and a U.S. effort to eliminate Iran’s last major regional ally. Moreover, contrarily to NATO’s operation in Kosovo in 1999, calls for intervention in Syria have failed to secure a strong level of consensus (i.e Russia and China’s veto at the UN General Assembly), and while the evidence of human rights abuse is powerful, Assad’s actions are not on the level of Serbian ethnic cleansing. As a result, we are obliged to revert back to the United Nations in our search for permission by a competent authority, which is not likely to happen any time soon. Finally, acknowledging the regime’s latest menace to use chemical weapons against any intervening forces, we are obligated to conclude that, from the perspective of proportionality, an intervention is very likely to exacerbate the conflict and aggravate the death toll.
At the moment, the prospect of an intervention in Syria fails to fulfill all five conditions for jus ad bellum. While a just cause and last resort are critically important, they are not sufficient for a just intervention. There is no political yearning to install the type of major military operation on