Former Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) issued strong words of caution Monday regarding the escalating situation in Syria, saying it reminded him of the preliminary stages of previous military engagements in Iraq and Vietnam.
"The process was identical to the massive deception campaign that led us into the Iraq war," Paul wrote in his weekly column, pointing to a Washington Post report that revealed President Barack Obama's administration had decided to arm Syrian rebels before it had officially confirmed that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces had used chemical weapons against them.
Obama's decision to ramp up U.S. involvement in Syria came after a years-long debate within his administration about whether providing support to rebel forces would ultimately help them topple Assad. Amid reports showing increasing involvement by Iranian-backed Hezbollah militia forces fighting with government forces, Obama finally decided to provide rebels with heavy weaponry, including RPGs and mortars.
But Paul said he didn't believe that the situation on the ground in Syria had actually changed at all.
"That is exactly what the Obama Administration is doing with Syria: fixing the intelligence and facts around the already determined policy," Paul continued. "And Congress just goes along, just as they did the last time."
Paul urged readers not to believe the administration's promises of a "limited operation," saying that the initial steps sounded "an awful lot like how Vietnam started."
"The president has opened a can of worms that will destroy his presidency and possibly destroy this country," Paul concluded. "Another multi-billion dollar war has begun."