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Humanitarian relief worker urges U.S. military action against Assad regime

7:02 PM, Sep 4, 2013   |    comments
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Many Syrian Americans are pushing for a U.S. Military strike they hope will help opposition forces that have been fighting the Assad regime for more than two years.

A member of the Syrian American Council has been overseas providing humanitarian relief in Syria during the past few months.

"I'm not going to lie to you, we felt, I mean, we were scared," Kenan Rahmani described a few hours after bombs detonated nearby. "When these bombs were going off, we were sort of panicking because they were really close."

Rahmani, 25-year-old Notre Dame law student, and his fellow Syrian American relief workers are in the northwest Syrian city of Kafr Anbel. The bombs exploded just beyond the rooftop of where he was staying.

"Today, there was a 12-year-old child that was murdered by the Assad regime just a few meters away from where we are right now," he said.

Since December, Rahmani has been traveling back and forth from Turkey to areas in Syria controlled by opposition forces. He and other Syrian Americans work with humanitarian relief organizations to provide aid to the Syrian people in areas that lack basic services.

"Has no government utilities, has no garbage collection, has no electricity," Rahmani explained. "The electricity that you see right now lasts for about an hour a day. After that we're on generators all day."

It's difficult work, but the Aug. 21 sarin attack has raised concerns that things could only get worse.

"There is no security in Syria, anywhere in Syria," Rahmani said. "A bomb could land right in front of you at any moment, and it could take your life."

Rahmani is convinced that a U.S. strike could save countless lives.

"What we want is a strike that is so significant that it cripples the Assad regime's Air Force and cripples his ability to use chemical weapons in the future."

That's why he hopes his fellow Americans will urge their representatives in Congress to approve military action in Syria.

"I think it's very important for every American, first of all to understand what is going on in Syria and then to make the decision that their conscience can be okay with."

By Gabriel Roxas, groxas@news10.net

Twitter: @gabrielroxas

Facebook: Gabriel Roxas

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