Sen. Rand Paul said that while it is sometimes necessary to go to war, the United States should only do so to win, not just to send a message as President Barack Obama proposes against Syria.
"We should fight for an American cause," Paul said Thursday on Fox News Channel's "Hannity." "I can't see fighting to impose Sharia law in Syria. I also can't see sending my son to fight with Islamic rebels against Christians. I also can't see my son going to fight on the same side as al-Qaida."
A minority of the Syrian rebels are linked to al-Qaida, but they have been described as the fiercest fighters, and Paul fears that if Syrian President Bashar Assad were toppled, the secular and extremist factions would fight each other.
Obama has threatened action, most likely cruise missile strikes, after Assad's government reportedly gassed civilians last week. A group of 140 members of Congress
have signed a letter requesting Obama seek congressional approval before acting.
Paul said it will be and "unlawful act" if Obama takes action without congressional approval.
"They won't risk a vote because they're worried they can be defeated," Paul said. "It happened in the British Parliament."
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