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Opinions on Syria: Incidents and Conceptual Metaphors - Essay Example

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Opinions on Syria: Incidents and Conceptual Metaphors
On August 21, 2013, several videos circulated on the Internet which showed dying children and overwhelmed hospitals in the suburbs of Damascus. …
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Opinions on Syria: Incidents and Conceptual Metaphors
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Download file to see previous pages Bashar al-Assad, President of Syria, denied the accusations that he used chemical weapons in Damascus. Ten days after the August gas bombings, U.S. President Barack Obama asked for Congress to authorize military action, but because of division at home and the intervention of Russia, the missile attacks did not occur (Cowell par.6). On September 2013, the United Nations weapons inspectors concluded that chemical weapons were used in Damascus last August, but they did not specify the identity/identities of the attackers (Cowell par.1). The essay will discuss the discourse on Syria, specifically the inciting incidents, sketchy information, and conceptual metaphors and buzzwords, using eight editorial and opinion pieces from The New York Times, The Huffington Post, U.S. News and World Report, and The New Yorker. In “The Time Has Come for U.S. Airstrikes in Syria” of The Wall Street Journal, Joseph Lieberman calls for the U.S. to conduct airstrikes in Syria using the metaphors of “killing machine,” “spill over,” and “game changer” to highlight the advantages of his position for Syria, the Middle East, and the U.S. Lieberman mentions facts, specifically the number of Syrians affected, where the chemical weapons attack is the inciting incident of the conflict. ...
Apparently, Lieberman is more interested on action than analysis of the truth behind Syria’s alleged use of chemical weapons. Moreover, Lieberman uses the metaphor of “killing machine” to incite fear among Americans and to influence them to support U.S. airstrikes in Syria. He says: “Assad's killing machine is tearing Syria to pieces” (par.4). By using the metaphor of “killing machine,” Lieberman has turned Assad into an inhumane leader whose actions are already presented as the cause of “sectarian civil war that could rage for years” (par.4). Lieberman creates a terrifying image of a killing machine that slaughters Syrians brutally because he wants to use fear to make people accept the validity of his position, which is to have the U.S. strike Syria. This image and his position can appeal to Syrians who want an immediate intervention, thereby winning their support, and to help Americans see the moral incentive of attacking Syria. In addition, Lieberman uses the metaphors of “spill over” and “game changer” to discuss the impacts of different kinds of U.S. intervention in Syria. He states: “a radicalized and balkanized Syria is also certain to spill over, threatening the stability and security of other states in the region,” where he adds the impact of the conflict on “U.S. allies in Jordan, Turkey, Iraq, Lebanon and Israel” (par.5). By mentioning these allies after the metaphor “spill over,” Lieberman seems to be calling the attention of Jordan, Turkey, Iraq, Lebanon and Israel, where they should also think about what will happen if the U.S. did not attack Syria. Finally, Lieberman uses the metaphor “game changer” in the first and last paragraphs of his opinion article. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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