WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, W.Va. — U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin said he would support limited U.S. involvement in Syria.

Manchin called Syrian leaders’ use of chemical weapons on their own people “unacceptable in any way, shape or form, but on the other hand are we responsible as a nation to be the gatekeeper for the world?”

Manchin, who spoke to MetroNews Thursday from the annual West Virginia Chamber of Commerce Business Summit at the Greenbrier Resort, said it’s the Arab League that should be leading the way with the response to Syria.

“We should be there to support them to clean up their own neighborhood. Whether we take control and jump in there, it just makes more of an adversarial relationship we have with the Arab world, I would be very reluctant to do that.”

Manchin has been outspoken during his time in the Senate about U.S. involvement in the Middle East. He has called for troops to be taken out of Afghanistan on more than one occasion. He said Thursday sending troops into Syria is not part of his discussion.

“I’m not for boots on the ground in any way, shape or form. The (military) strike should basically be a supportive strike that’s led by the Arab League,” Manchin reiterated.

The senator said the U.S. should consider non-military solutions.

“We can support, and should support, humanitarian aid and humane treatment of all people anywhere in the world,” Manchin said. “There are many things we can do, but going in and taking the lead is not one of them and not one we have done well.”

Manchin concluded he would have to learn a lot more about the situation before he would ever support a preemptive strike.


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  • Levelheaded

    Manchin, the foreign policy expert. What a joke.

  • Luke

    No one is advocating an invasion.


    Secure our borders to the maximum. Heck, put our troops all way around them despite the posse comitatus act. Time to take are of America. Anything else, is just plain stupid right now. No more American blood on foreign soil unless it is a direct assault on us.

  • Luke

    The Free Rebel Army which constitutes most of the resistance are Allowites as is Assad. The difference is that those Rebels are fed up with the oppression of the Assad Regime. The Al-Qaeda groups do not support the Free Rebel Army and seek to seize power for themselves and like minded Islamists. There are several other groups involved in the fighting but even combined they are small in number to the Free Rebel Army supporters.

    Manchin is totally out of his element even discussing foreign and military policy. His position is the default to Obama and the Democrat Party position. If you like Obama you'll love Manchin on this one.

    Manchin is totally out to lunch in supporting a "limited" strike. Few Americans support the President's "shot across the bow" approach as that is nothing more than a face saving measure for the President's failed foreign policy.

    • DonaldH

      Luke, I would like to believe you are right but I'm no longer willing to be part of anything in the Mid-East--- Not even willing to defend Israel.. I have come to realize they too are part of the problem and not part of the solution..

      • Luke

        Doing nothing or even next to nothing has consequences too, Some here want the US to retreat and defend its borders. Hell we can't keep the unarmed Mexicans, out of the country.

        In 2008 Obama made his apology tour of the Middle East. Thereafter Kerry advocated flipping Assad and Hillary was going to "reset" US relations with Russia. Now Assad is taunting the US and Putin is treating Obama like the feckless leader he is.

        When the adversaries of the US no longer fear us, you better watch out.

    • Roy Riggleman

      Free Rebel Army would be a sweet name for a band.

  • Tim C

    Syria is an enemy....the rebels they are fighting are backed by Al-Qaeda. Why would we want to stop them from killing each other?

  • Captain Vito

    West Virginia's "Junior" U S Senator Should Not Try To Make A Political Prize By Commenting On International Military Affairs When He Has Never Served In The USA Military ! It Is Politicians Such As Manchin That Should Keep Silent On Something He Has No Experience In Talking About !

    Mr. Joe Manchin Did Not Serve In The Military Because He Had Bad Knees From Playing WVU Football...But Bad Knees Didn't Stop Him From Other Civilian Physical Feats!! He Should Have Went To Canada With His Friends !

  • cutty77

    100% right Suticase. They have been killing each other longer than we are old. Let them have at it,and when one gets tired of it they will stop. We have our own people straving in the streets.

  • Suitcase Simpson

    Seems to me like these middle eastern folk favorite hobby is blowing the crap out of each other. Perhaps we should direct our time and treasure towards other parts of the world rather than wasting so much blood in the miserable east

  • WV alum

    You got this one right, Joe!

  • thornton

    MoJoe speaks a range of reasonable ideas.

  • Herd 1

    Finally a voice of reason above the armchair generals.

    • DonaldH

      You mean a voice of reason beyond the actual, be them retired Air Force Generals, who are saying-Don't do it?

  • Gunga Din

    Good call -- just give our ordnance to others and let them push the buttons. No blood on our hands. Haha.

  • Luke

    If by "limited" the Senator means cosmetic then he is really off base. The strike should be directed against the Assad Regime's air assets in order to degrade its ability to wage war against the Free Rebel Army. That can't be accomplished in a "limited" action.

    If we are just going to move some rubble around in order to make a statement then we ought to stay out.

    This is vintage Manchin. I'm for it but I'm also against it! We need grown ups in Washington.

    • DonaldH

      So you want the U.S. to be Al-Qaida's Air Force? Because that's who this "Free Rebel Army" is...

    • Magic Mike

      We should not strike Syria two bad groups killing each other is not a bad thing. Not to mention Iran will strike Israel. The whole place is a powder keg waiting to explode.

  • 2XLPatriot

    "Manchin concluded he would have to learn a lot more about the situation before he would ever support a preemptive strike. "

    In other words; "Would it benefit my future campaigns, how much money can Bloomberg squeeze out of it and will it further my gun control agenda?"

    • DonaldH


  • AX MAN

    Just stay out of Syria, all we do is spend humane life, billions of dollars that we have to borrow, and after all is said and done, the place will fall apart again in a couple of years.