War (of Words) with SyriaThursday, Sep 12, 2013
So let me see if I understand right wing punditry.
Invading Syria is a stupid thing to do because we will be al Qaeda's airforce.
Not invading Syria is a stupid thing to do because it projects weakness.
Allowing Russia to mediate in dealing with the chemical weapons is a stupid thing to do because it also projects weakness.
Saber rattling without invading, even if we can accomplish our goals through diplomacy, is a stupid thing to do because, yes, it projects weakness.
The only reasonable course of action is to go back in time two years and attack Syria then, because attacking them two years ago makes sense while attacking them now is stupid.
We have the power to rain a thousand missles on a city in a single day, but having a man born in Mombasa in the White House makes us weak.
Did I miss anything?
Thursday, Aug 29, 2013
Over the past six months, with shifting front lines in the 2½-year-old civil war and sketchy satellite and human intelligence coming out of Syria, U.S. and allied spies have lost track of who controls some of the country’s chemical weapons supplies, according to the two intelligence officials and two other U.S. officials.
U.S. satellites have captured images of Syrian troops moving trucks into weapons storage areas and removing materials, but U.S. analysts have not been able to track what was moved or, in some cases, where it was relocated. They are also not certain that when they saw what looked like Assad’s forces moving chemical supplies, those forces were able to remove everything before rebels took over an area where weapons had been stored.
In addition, an intercept of Syrian military officials discussing the strike was among low-level staff, with no direct evidence tying the attack back to an Assad insider or even a senior Syrian commander, the officials said.
So while Secretary of State John Kerry said Monday that it was “undeniable,” a chemical weapons attack had occurred, and that it was carried out by the Syrian military, U.S. intelligence officials are not so certain that the suspected chemical attack was carried out on Assad’s orders. Some have even talked about the possibility that rebels could have carried out the attack in a callous and calculated attempt to draw the West into the war. That suspicion was not included in the official intelligence report, according to the official who described the report.
Wednesday, Dec 07, 2005
Talks about Syria’s future show differences between Israel, U.S.
JTA -- December 6, 2005
Insurgents plotted in Syria, U.S. says
AP via London Times
Saturday, May 29, 2004
Thoughts on Syrian politics, history and religion.
Bush Ponders Syria Sanctions
Baltimore Jewish Times -- March 6, 2004
Special to the Jewish Times
Washington -- The United States no longer wonders whether or not Syrian President Bashar Assad is a reliable diplomatic partner. The question now, according to an official close to government deliberations on whether to sanction Syria, is why Assad is proving so hopeless.
Syria willing to eliminate WMD
NDTV -- March 1, 2004
(Damascus): Syrian Foreign Minister Farouq al Sharaa said they are prepared to eliminate weapons of mass destruction but only under the supervision of the United Nations.
Sharaa also said Syria is hopeful that a long-planned economic and political partnership pact with the European Union might be signed soon despite differences over weapons of mass destruction.
EU states pressuring Syria over WMD - diplomats
Reuters -- February 6, 2004
By Lin Noueihed
BEIRUT - EU member states have stepped up their pressure on Syria to show it is fighting the spread of weapons of mass destruction since Libya said it would scrap its banned weapons programmes, diplomats say.
The 15-nation bloc had been expected to initial an economic and political cooperation pact with Syria by the end of 2003, but diplomats say it is being held up because some governments want Damascus to show a greater commitment against WMD.
Syria asserts its right to chemical weapons
Syndey Morning Herald -- January 7, 2004
By Benedict Brogan in Damascus
Syria was entitled to defend itself by acquiring its own chemical and biological deterrent, President Bashar Assad said as he rejected American and British demands for concessions on weapons of mass destruction.
Mr Assad came closer than ever to admitting that his country had stockpiles of such weapons. He said Syria would agree to destroy its chemical and biological capability only if Israel agreed to abandon its nuclear arsenal.