As the march to limited military intervention in Syria moves forward, some troops are making their views known — albeit anonymously — on social media.
Photos of service members have apparently popped up on Reddit, seemingly in protest of Syrian intervention. (Since they are not identified, it’s impossible to verify they are indeed serving in the military.)
The basic argument is that the line between moderate rebel factions and al Qaeda-affiliated ones are somewhat murky in the two-year-old civil war, so the U.S. should stay away from intervening on the rebel side (even in response to a large-scale chemical weapons attack).
The posters are essentially saying that they didn’t join the military “to fight for al Qaeda in a Syrian civil war.”
Interestingly, while they can have their own personal viewpoints of course, joining the military means giving up certain rights.
Specifically, the refusal to do things that your commanders want you to do (i.e. attack Syria). The oath of enlistment is pretty clear on that:
“I, [Name], do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God.”
It’s also worth noting that, while some military members may agree with the message of the photos, many don’t agree with using the uniform to bolster the argument.