Global Policy Studies & International Security Multimedia

Policy Briefs Season 4, Episode 1: “No Clear Path To Utopia”

Amid escalating and prolonged violence in Syria, the prospects for a diplomatic solution look dim. What should the U.S. do? Does America need to intervene? What is the path forward?

Host Andy Uhler talks to Alan Kuperman, Associate Professor at the LBJ School of Public Affairs, who has published on ethnic conflict and U.S. military intervention, and Jeremi Suri , author of Liberty’s Surest Guardian: American Nation-Building from the Founders to Obama about the ongoing conflict in Syria.

Professor Suri argues that the U.S. should avoid direct military intervention but continue providing indirect support to the rebels.

He says, “The best way for us to have a positive influence upon [the rebels] is to aid the rebels and try to nudge them in certain directions that we believe are the appropriate directions…”

Professor Kuperman disagrees. He says, “I would actually argue that either of two other paths forward are the way to go: either a big intervention like the U.S. led with NATO in Libya…. or to say to the rebels, ‘We’re not going to aid you. You folks have to stand down and make a deal with Assad….’ ”

Our guests also discuss the influence that the Russians may hold on the situation, lessons to be learned from Libya, and the potential effects on the U.S. relationship with Iran.

Host: Andy Uhler
Producers: G. Phillip Vela, Jennifer Lee
Guests: Alan Kuperman, Jeremi Suri

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