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In the case of the Iraq War, the intervention killed hundreds of thousands of Iraqis and shattered the country, as well as costing the lives of thousands of U.S. and British soldiers. The tragic legacy of the Iraqi intervention continues today, however, because it now stands as a cautionary tale against all intervention. Indeed, Obama came closest to using force in Syria when presented with unequivocal evidence in the summer of 2013 that President Bashar Assad was using chemical weapons against his citizens.Third, intervention planners should assume worst-case rather than best-case scenarios.Finally, if such an intervention failed either to stop Assad's massacre of civilians or to create the conditions for a negotiated peace, Syria would be no worse off than it is today.But Assad actively benefits from the presence of Daesh in Syria; it reinforces precisely the counterterrorist narrative that he has promoted since the first peaceful protests against his government began in March 2011 . And Syrians across the country will fight Daesh just as fiercely with or without Assad's air force. That said, intervention can still be the right course.
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