1. Statement
  2. Middle East & Iran, Syria

As Friends, We Reaffirm that War Is Not the Answer in Syria

By Diane Randall, April 7, 2017


There are no easy solutions to the violence in Syria. But our faith and experience lead us to reaffirm that bombing will not end that violence. Only by addressing the root causes of violence and conflict in Syria can we move the U.S. closer to peace.

The abhorrent chemical weapons attack in Syria in early April was an act of unspeakable violence against civilians. The deaths of Syrians, including many children, are heartbreaking.

There are no easy solutions to the violence in Syria. But our faith and experience lead us to reaffirm that bombing will not end that violence. U.S. airstrikes will not eliminate chemical weapons or end the bloodshed of the country's 6-year-old civil war. In facing a crisis such as Syria, we must seek diplomatic and international solutions that bring those responsible for the chemical weapons attack to justice. Only by addressing the root causes of violence and conflict in Syria can we move the U.S. closer to peace.

As Friends, we witness to that spirit of love which takes away the occasion of war. Responding to violence with force masquerades as effective action, but only serves to entrench the conditions that foment violence. The urge to do something – anything – overwhelms the mandate to do no harm. Only through nonviolent engagement can we create the conditions under which peace and true security can flourish. More than twenty-five years of U.S. military action in the Middle East has only increased the violence. The latest bombing continues this failed policy.

In these contentious times, we are called to look deeply within ourselves and work for a world that is not yet brought into being.

War is not the answer.

Diane Randall

  • Executive Secretary

Diane Randall is the Executive Secretary of the Friends Committee on National Legislation. Diane leads FCNL’s staff to effectively educate and lobby for the policies and legislative priorities established by FCNL’s General Committee. A lifelong advocate for peace and social justice, Diane is a fierce proponent for citizen engagement that advances policies and practices to create a better society for all.