Syrian Civil War: Could It Have Been Avoided and How Vast Did the Conflict Become?

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The Syrian civil war has created millions of refugees and the question of what to do with them (whether to allow refugees into the U.S. refugees has sparked contentious debate in America. One side believes that Americans have a moral obligation to help the refugees, while the other says that the refugees pose a potential security threat. In this case it is better to air on the side of caution and refrain from letting refugees into the U.S. because they cannot be vetted properly and terrorist groups have the means and have tried to use the refugee program to enter the country.

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The reason that refugees should not be allowed to enter the United States is that they cannot be vetted properly to ensure that they do not pose a security threat. The reason for this lies in the fact that no database exists to fact check these entering refugees (2). There is simply no way to validate any information provided by the refugees. In addition it is known that ISIS has the capability to produce what appear to be extremely valid Syrian passports (4). As FBI Director James Comey said “If we don’t know much about somebody there won’t be anything in our data. I can’t sit here and offer anybody an absolute assurance there’s no risk involved with that” (3). A government’s duty is to its citizens so you should have keeping Americans safe as the top priority. This means that a whole group of people may have to be not let in if a few of them are terrorist. As they say a bad apple ruins the bunch. Furthermore we know that terrorists can and have infiltrated the United States posing as refugees. There have been three refugees arrested in America on charges of terrorism (1). While this may seem an insignificant figure, especially when compared to the vast quantities of refugees allowed into the United States from countries that have terrorist groups operating within their borders, it is important to remember that you only need one terrorist to create an attack. Three terrorist means one and a half Boston Marathon bombings, or one and a half San Bernardino attacks. To me it does it feel right to put Americans at risk even if the risk is infinitesimal. However, just because the U.S. should not allow Syrian refugees into the nation does not mean that the U.S. should not do anything. In fact the U.S. should do many things such as providing aid both financially and other material necessities. Additionally the U.S. could help in bringing the war in Syria to a close. Additionally there are things that can be accomplished to make it safe to bring Syrian refugees into the country such as collecting records and data so proper background checks can occur when vetting the refugees.

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