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Obama asks Congress to authorize Syria strike

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I will seek authorisation for the use of force from the American people’s representatives in Congress,” Obama said.

Congress is to debate Obama’s decision to attack Syria during the week starting on Sept 9 when they return to work, its speaker said.

American administration have demonstrated her true face once again. A bunch of shameless liars and dirty aggressors. Nothing new.

-4 ( +11 / -15 )

http://drones.pitchinteractive.com/

Playing the moral card doesn't wash. A timely reminder of that who is hypocritical and cowardly.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

Putin commented saying "The Americans “say that they have proof, well, let them show it to the United Nations inspectors and the Security Council… If they don’t show it, that means there is none.” You have to agree with him, thats what the Security Council is for, and if they can prove those facts then they have a better chance of getting full agreement of any Security Council recommendation , including China and Russia.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

If the US did bomb over Syria, it will not stop air strikes in a few days or a few weeks. The US would finally send thousands of Ground Force over there and fight for next 10 years. Professional soldiers love war like computer game.

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Best news yet. For once, Obamba will have to seemingly follow the law and seek congressional authorization. But if he doesn't get it, he'll blame...GWB.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

So are we saying that use of chems is now acceptable and can go unpunished? I for one thinks legal strike is necessary. He should seek approval.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

This is all GWB's fault. If he hadn't gotten the U.S. involved in wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, making people wary of getting involved in wars, Obama wouldn't be in this precarious situation.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

If the US did bomb over Syria, it will not stop air strikes in a few days or a few weeks.

Seriously ? There must have been tremendous resistance and blowback from the military. I’m thinking that the abrupt Obama about face was a actually a bottom up decision in large measure because the Pentagon balked at this big time. Even Dempsey came out publicly against the strike, saying we didn’t have the money to mount an effective strike against Syria, and more funds would have to be appropriated. That and because he was out on a limb alone taking the country down with him straight into an impeachment trap. In any case, a catastrophe has been avoided. The United States has avoided a foreign entanglement that would not have benefited Americans but would have cost them dearly.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Syria now and the Middle East in general with Russia's help with Iran poised there and Israel righteously shivering in their boots issuing gas masks is indeed ready to go. But no one can actually predict when it might go. The pressure is on.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Let us not forget China and Russia stood by while assad brutalized his people at the beginning of this, 100,000 lives before, remember? This all started with Assad killing his own people during peaceful protests. This whole thing however is the Syrian governments responsibility, it does not matter who used them, the army, by orders of his crazy brother, or Bashar himself; the fact is, they have no control of their borders, rebels flowing in like water, they have killed and terrorized their own people, and/or used and could not prevent the use of WMD's on their own people. Wouldn't it be nice if Assad finally did something right? I think he will, he has time, forget China and Russia, or Iran, . Do whats right for Syria, and give the U.S. a reason not to strike you down. peace on the seven seas .

1 ( +5 / -4 )

OzKen, thanks for that link. The war-hawks are blind to the mindless killings by drones under you-know-whose finger. Hypocrisy defined.

Let's see if US Congress has the right stuff to vote against another war, the pretext to WWIII/Z.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Libs will try any means to justify this war => Shameful.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Residents were seen stocking up with fuel for generators in case utilities are knocked out by a strike.

Congratulations America.

Residents are also fleeing the country. Now why would that be? America's justice missiles of death won't kill women, children and other innocent civilians, will they?

Gruesome pictures of some of the reported victims of the attacks, including children, have shocked the world

I urge residents to do the same following the cruise missiles lobbed 1000 km away.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Haven't we killed enough innocent people? We never should have gone into Iraq where we killed thousands of innocent people. We are also killing many innocent people with our drones & this also includes women & children. Let's take care of people in America. Apparently we don't pay too much attention to ur Constitution & International law.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

http://drones.pitchinteractive.com/ Playing the moral card doesn't wash. A timely reminder of that who is hypocritical and cowardly.

Nice link.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

To add to this discussion I have 2 comments

The first is that this article and every other that I have read have talked about chemical weapons, chemicals or weapons of mass destruction being used in Syria, but none of them have actually identified the "chemical". I don't find that reassuring.

The second is a couple of Palinisms.

“So we’re bombing Syria because Syria is bombing Syria? And I’m the idiot?” - Sarah Palin

"As I said before, if we are dangerously uncertain of the outcome and are led into war by a Commander-in-chief who can’t recognize that this conflict is pitting Islamic extremists against an authoritarian regime with both sides shouting 'Allah Akbar' at each other, then let Allah sort it out,"

7 ( +7 / -0 )

I don't like the US doing this. At all. BUT, Chris Lowery is right, China and Russia have had the ability to Veto anything in the United Nations to address this issue.

This proves once again, that the UN is a useless and ineffective organisation that is unable to take critical and decisive action when people need them the most. They can't protect and serve the vulnerable. They are an organisation crippled by bureaucracy and decision making processes that continually fail the people of the world.

It's been happening in relation to Israel for years, as well as other parts of the Middle East, and now Syria. I feel so sorry for the Syrians.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

It seems like Obama has taken the easy out on this one. Congree NEVER approves anything he wants them to, and he knows that.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

What is Obama's legal base for this possible preemptive strike without the UN resolution? America is not being attacked so it can not be a self defense action. Obama seems producing Obama Doctrine.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Hmmm....I'm getting back onto the fence again.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

So Obama is damned either way, if he goes with out congress people say he was just as bad as Bush2. If he waits for approval, he said to be taking the easy way out. Since the system in US was set up that only the Congress can declare war, I don't see Obama doing anything wrong here. What he has done has forced congress to take responsibility for any action or inaction taken. Finally the congress is responsible for something.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

after 9/11, almost all of US leaders were crying, rolling, doing Rock'N'Rolla, "We are under attack", but when it comes to IRAQ, Afganistan,...... they said we are backed by citizen of United State. This time in case of Syria they are not getting enough support in their own country, UN team haven't submitted the report about use of chemical veapons, Russia is asking about proof, despite that Obama delibrately saying we'll attack Syria. DOES IT MAKE SENSE?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Make no mistake that MOST of the American people do not want to intervene in Syria. I do understand that people shouldn't use chemical weapons on their own people, but one, the alternative we have, is giving other bad people power, and two, this seems like it's going to turn into another war, and most American's are tired of war. It seems like these are personal agendas of the Administration.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The U.S. government has cried wolf once too often to start a useless and evil war. I want to see the clear proof of chemical weapons before I believe anything the Obama administration says. And even if the allegation is true, all that the U.S. will do in the end is add more innocent corpses to the pile.

Unfortunately, the best that any country can do for Syria at the moment is to stay away. What started out as essentially a bloodless revolution has become a horror, where the cure is as bad as the disease.

The civil war in Syria is painful to watch but foreign involvement will only make things worse. Afghanistan and Iraq stand as stark examples.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

It is good that this has been presented before Congress first. And it will be good if they hold for the UN test results. One has to be sure before using force; anything else would just be irresponsible.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

JeanValJean at Sep. 01, 2013 - 08:54AM JST " But if he doesn't get it, he'll blame...GWB."

You're seriously suggesting the fiasco touched off by GWB Iraq isn't the sole reason the world is going to sit by and watch impotently as this conflict opens the door to chemical warfare?

Surely even sovereign citizens teach their kids the universal story of the child who cried wolf....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The Two things stand out here likes a dog's proverbial B****s is this:

Obama does not want to do this but is in a corner in part from the usual big mouthing from America - which nobody (Russia, China, most of the worlds population) takes seriously anymore. We all know that America has the force to attack any country in the world but we all also think: Would they be so stupid? Even Obama now understands this (GWB never did).

2, WMD! WMD! Nuclear plans! Dictatorships!!! Torture! Men being fed into mincing machines!! WMD!! WE HAVE TO GO TO WAR!!!!!!

Sorry America. Try reading the boy who called wolf.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Madverts: You're seriously suggesting the fiasco touched off by GWB Iraq isn't the sole reason the world is going to sit by and watch impotently as this conflict opens the door to chemical warfare?

It's not. This isn't even about Syria and I've come to realized that it never was. This whole thing is about the world's desire to find some kind of counterweight to the US. If they can stop the US from acting here then they will have a sense that they have some measure of control. No one cared about Syria until the US threw it's hat into the ring and now people are speaking out whereas they were silent before. The victory they want has nothing to do with civilians. It has everything to do with trying to exert influence to make the US change it's path. That's the game the West is playing now and Syria is just a pawn. If you read all of the comments from those opposed to action with that in mind it starts to make a lot of sense.

Obama is a smart guy and I suspect he understands this. But he also knows that if the US doesn't act then no one will and chemical weapons will be used more. Tough choice for Obama. Do the right thing and make the next situation more difficult for the US, or do nothing and let people die but get the benefit of making the West happy since no one cares about Syria anyway. Letting them die might be in our best interests since it will make Westerners more comfortable.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

If the U.S. had not been involved in wars in Afghanistan and Iraq Obama might not have so much opposition to his plans to get involved in the war in Syria.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I like you deep reasoning Super Lib. But has their been any info on WHO actually used them? Your comment makes sense unless it was the US or Israel that blew up the chemical weapons.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"It's not."

Super my friend, ten years ago we rarely saw eye to eye on anything. These days, I find myself to be in agreement with you a lot of the time on a whole range of issues, although whether this is because I'm simply older I have no idea. That said, I fail to comprehend your refusal to acknowledge that the decision to invade Iraq under false pretences is ultimately the contributing factor behind the complete lack-lustre of a unified response - not just to the recent massacre via chemical weapons - but the whole Syrian civil war itself. I think it is fair to say that it is, at home and abroad.

We can always expect countries to unhappy about the power wielded by the US - usually selfishly on their part when a US decision goes against the interests of whoever is unhappy, but you can also apply this logic for when America does something illogical (blind support for Israel), or as in Iraq, (damned insane to the rest of us). I know I'd rather deal with the US than the Russians or the Chinese, the real whores here.

I respect your honesty in wishing to remain on the fence, it seems a safe place to be. Syria is a big unknown. I think all of us moderates have been perched up there since Assad lobbed the first bomb on those protesting against his dictatorship, but even I'm starting to feel the splinters in my ass when over a thousand adults and over four hundred kids get gassed in one afternoon....

Bottom line? The next few weeks will have the hypocrites in the spotlight, certainly all those Republican politicians that will have screamed for action in Iraq that will presumably do their usual number of total obstruction of the president.

How can we on one hand demand pre-emptive action to remove a threat of weapons of mass destruction that didn't actually exist, and then refuse to act when there is no doubt such munitions have been used on civillians in the space of ten years?

Personally I believe the US intelligence this time. And I say to Putin, if he has evidence the rebels used them as he has officially stated then he should also present such evidence to the UN. I'd like to see that. Even if the rebels have got their hands on some of Assad's gas they would need air power, something they don't have, for it to be effective as it was the other day as far as my understanding goes at least. And even if the rebels did somehow pull it off, should it not spur everyone into action to prevent the proliferation of such miserable creations in the most volatile region of the planet?

Action or inaction, America will be blamed and even I as a non-American see how unjust that is.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Obama is playing the same card, divert attention of US citizen from core issues they are facing these days... if you see debt on US, they dont even have money to run their administration after November.

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Obama is using congress and hiding behind the Constitution to save his face. Congress will not allow it as all Americans are against it. The last poll taken showed 95% OF Americans against any involvement in Syria. The Military is against it and is about to revolt. Obama is a disgrace to America.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Nice speech Madverts, but until we/I get to the bottom of who blew up the chemicals, all is pure speculation and pointing fingers is useless.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

So, they are using chemical weapons in Syria?

Big deal.

The US used chemical weapons in Vietnam - Agent Orange, Napalm.

What do they care?

The US didn't make any comment about Uganda when far worse things were happening there. And ignored Tibet when China invaded and killed and tortured thousands.

Obama reckons it's OK to send drones to kill suspected terrorists - AND anyone else who happens to be standing in the vicinity. He gave his OK to invade Pakistan and assassinate someone they tell us was Bin Laden, but there is no proof because the body was conveniently dumped at sea.

What does the US care about 1,500 dying in Syria,? They killed more women and children than that in Afghanistan and Iraq in a few weeks.

Bigotry!

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

The US used depleted Uranium in Iraq which will affect generations!

What double standards are at work here?

If Obama has proof then he has to show it or shut up!

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http://www.worldtribune.com/2013/08/28/mounting-evidence-raises-questions-about-syrian-chemical-weapon-attack/ http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-202_162-57600624/syria-chemical-weapons-attack-blamed-on-assad-but-wheres-the-evidence/ http://www.examiner.com/article/u-s-backed-syrian-rebels-reportedly-massacre-christian-village

Also found these to be very interesting...:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HP7L8bw5QF4 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aGYPlopMmrg

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

if you see debt on US, they dont even have money to run their administration after November.

http://www.latimes.com/world/middleeast/la-fg-obama-assess-20130901,0,2451377.story

Midnight stroll with a top adviser around the WH lawn Friday night talking war and he blinks. Presumably a chat on the escalating military and debt stakes with fresh anti missile warship deployments by Russia combined with impeachment talk in Congress. If we had the financial resources and public support I have no doubt it would be a different ending. Sometimes it really is good to be lucky.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

"Nice speech Madverts, but until we/I get to the bottom of who blew up the chemicals, all is pure speculation and pointing fingers is useless."

It isn't speculation that chemical weapons have been used by the belligerents in this conflict.

Frankly, if the rebels have seized Assad's WMD's (the only other possible way you can frame your argument) then it shows what a real clear and present danger Assad's regime is to proliferation of these weapons to all of us, and more than enough justification to take out these sites remotely if you ask me. And there was I clinging to non-involvement....

Let's see Putin's contrary evidence.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It's not. This isn't even about Syria and I've come to realized that it never was. This whole thing is about the world's desire to find some kind of counterweight to the US. If they can stop the US from acting here then they will have a sense that they have some measure of control. No one cared about Syria until the US threw it's hat into the ring and now people are speaking out whereas they were silent before. The victory they want has nothing to do with civilians.

That's actually quite insightful. Whether or not it's right is certainly open for debate but the sentiment is grounded in the reality of modern geopolitics.

That said, I fail to comprehend your refusal to acknowledge that the decision to invade Iraq under false pretences is ultimately the contributing factor behind the complete lack-luster of a unified response - not just to the recent massacre via chemical weapons - but the whole Syrian civil war itself. I think it is fair to say that it is, at home and abroad.

I'm actually kind of with SuperLib on this one. While the UN is characterized by inaction on a good day the current utter paralysis of the organization is actually kind of disturbing. The argument isn't really whether or not the Syrian government used chemical weapons on its own people, that has been almost universally accepted based off of the weak and conspiracy laden arguments to the contrary, but rather whether the world is willing to allow another US intervention on it's behalf.

Every time the US or NATO acts in a trouble spot it highlights the glaring fact that the UN, and by extension most world powers, is functionally useless by comparison. I don't doubt that Iraq is a contributing factor to what equates to an international boycott on US political influence but I think it's a component, not a root cause.

So now one of two things happen. The US bows to the wishes of the international community and takes a seat, effectively resigning its perceived authority. This would be a massive blow to the American psyche, even American's against the intervention on principle may find themselves reeling if they see their leaders unable to act on what has been proclaimed as a moral conviction. The other thing that could happen is that the US rallies enough support and totally defies the entirety of the international community and intervene's anyway. In that instance the status quo is maintained.

I'm a proponent of intervention, not for the aforementioned political reasons but because I believe that NBC weapons are and should be the ultimate litmus test. I believe NBC weapons are fundamentally different from, and more destructive, than conventional weapons both in terms of real damage and on a philosophical level as it pertains to the lengths at which a state will go to win a conflict. A UN that can abide their use in gridlock is not one that I feel comfortable giving any level of authority, it reeks of apathy and malaise on a global scale.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

No one cared about Syria until the US threw it's hat into the ring and now people are speaking out whereas they were silent before.

Russia has a naval base there and have been against these foreign terrorist attacks from the start. The people of Syria unified (saw Assad as a better solution than the foreign backed terrorists) and pushed the terrorists out and into a corner. =Now these terrorists has upped the attack with nerve gas attacks with the chemicals coming from Turkey and Saudi Arabia.

If the people of Syria give up now they know the situation will be dire. =all in =the terrorists must be expelled now. =No delays due to the terrorist gas attacks. If the people of Syria give in to the foreign terrorists they will lose everything and have nothing.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

@BertieWooster: Until Sept 15 when US Congress adjourn we don;t know the fate of Damascus citiznes who still live there.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The Question,

Thanks for weighing in.

"I'm actually kind of with SuperLib on this one. While the UN is characterized by inaction on a good day the current utter paralysis of the organization is actually kind of disturbing. The argument isn't really whether or not the Syrian government used chemical weapons on its own people, that has been almost universally accepted based off of the weak and conspiracy laden arguments to the contrary, but rather whether the world is willing to allow another US intervention on it's behalf."

He does always make a bloody good argument, but on this occasion I'm in utter disagreement, despite welcoming some decent debate in the world news section of JT, it's been a while......

Firstly, I brought up the question of inaction vs. action, an ice-age old disagreement between us both. Nothing to do with a UN mandate incidentmy. Also, I'm not sure it's fair to use the UN's impotence in this particular argument.

The Bush regime had no compunction acting "unilaterally" when it became clear no mandate would be given for military intervention on the now infamous case made by Colin Powell. Furthermore, this further reinforces my point on how far geopolitical hands were forced by the Bush administration's obsession with toppling Saddam Hussein and the ramifications of these actions ten years on.

"Every time the US or NATO acts in a trouble spot it highlights the glaring fact that the UN, and by extension most world powers, is functionally useless by comparison. I don't doubt that Iraq is a contributing factor to what equates to an international boycott on US political influence but I think it's a component, not a root cause."

If we're bringing the the UN to the debate, than I must repeat that it needs to reform or become irrelevant. The fact that only five countries out of the hundred-odd countries on the map have a veto in this day and age speaks volumes about their credibility and fairness. All serious members should have an equal vote for a "united" nation principle to work fairly.

I think the US, or really President Obama himself even without approval will act, and I've come to the conclusion that it is inevitable and despite my own misgivings about intervention, I would support an Obama military strike on Assad's known WMD sites. Heh, even if US intelligence aren't sure, we can always rely on the Israeli's for guidance....

Allowing a massacre on the scale we have seen in the Syrian conflict is bad enough. Ignoring the precedent set by the use of chemical weapons by either side is a step too far IMO.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Smart politics.

Obama was in a bit of a bind, re; Syria. Intervention was risky and highly unpopular, yet failing to do so would make the US look weak and damage its credibility. Now, he goes and puts congress in the same bind. If they vote not to authorize military action, Obama is off the hook - any negative consequences will be congress' responsibility. If they vote yes, then they share in the blame if things go wrong. And either way, Obama gets to position himself as a champion of the democratic process.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Firstly, I brought up the question of inaction vs. action, an ice-age old disagreement between us both. Nothing to do with a UN mandate incidentmy. Also, I'm not sure it's fair to use the UN's impotence in this particular argument.

While I agree that the disagreement is an old one I think there has been a considerable shift in the tone and substance of the debate at it's core. I'm mostly looking at the actions of smaller nations that lack a stake in the game.

The expectation is that if the US feels that it should act the argument has ceased, action is coming and it is coming soon and will arrive with the force of some level of NATO backing as well as a level of support from member nations. Now the support has evaporated. The idea that Iraq broke domestic and international resolve for such activity flies in the face of what we've seen in Libya. If anything the intervention in Syria will be on an even smaller scale but is being met with fierce resistance to what should be a universally appealing middle ground of removing chemical weapons from the game board.

If we're bringing the the UN to the debate, than I must repeat that it needs to reform or become irrelevant. The fact that only five countries out of the hundred-odd countries on the map have a veto in this day and age speaks volumes about their credibility and fairness. All serious members should have an equal vote for a "united" nation principle to work fairly.

Which goes back to the age old question of whether all nations bring equal weight to the table. China and the US would have nothing to gain from a more democratic setup of nations and nations like Russia, Iran, and Cuba gain a larger platform from which to rabble rouse at. I also don't see the US or UK participating in anything that reduces their perceived sovereignty.

Heh, even if US intelligence aren't sure, we can always rely on the Israeli's for guidance....

And people wonder why I like having them around.

Ignoring the precedent set by the use of chemical weapons by either side is a step too far IMO.

And that's the real driver behind the US's inevitable intervention. Given our involvement in the region the US cannot, under any circumstances, allow chemical weapons to become the norm. Normalization leads to proliferation and that's something no rational nation should abide.

People don't seem to grasp how, frankly, diabolical NBC's are when compared to conventional weapons. They are indiscriminate, uncontrollable, they hit secondary targets, they kill first responders, and they permeate the area for extended lengths of time. NBC's can also be divided and deployed in small batches that can generate casualties that no conventional weapon of comparable size could do. Imagine if the bomb in Boston had been sarin, we're talking about hundreds of immediate victims and thousands of secondary victims that come in contact with the skin/clothing of any primary victims that ran away.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

NeneswswSep. 01, 2013 - 07:13PM JST NeneswswSep. 01, 2013 - 07:29PM JST

Sorry about my previous post, I didn't insert the links directly (my bad!)

So would you please tell us what you want to tell us? I am sure someone like Mr. David Frost would never do to hung us in air.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

If this evidence is so damning why didn't the US share it with the British as proof, which is what the Labour party amendment was about. No evidence meant no trust, which in turn led to no British military action.

So why don't the US share this evidence with the UN security council? Or are we on about control lorries again and WMDs? Come on America, if you have the smoking gun, prove it. Don't hide behind "we know" BS... if you know, then show the rest of the world. If you want a Coalition of the Willing (rather than the mad French and even madder Turkey) then you need to do a wee bit better than just give us words... photos, videos of the firing of the rockets, satellite tracking data (you can see a sparrow fart but you can't show a missile launch? You've been watching Syria 24/7 for the past 2 years!)

3 ( +3 / -0 )

So after making it plain that he was planning to attack very soon, Obama has abruptly changed his mind and wants Congress to vote on this issue; however, he insists that he can attack anyway if the vote goes against him. What is that supposed to mean? After telling the world that what is going on in Syria is an atrocity he has begun to waver.

The man that essentially won the presidency by campaigning against unilateral and hasty rush to war finds himself in the uncomfortable position of looking for the US Congress to give him cover for doing just that.

Obama is an amateur stumbling over himself on the world stage. Regard for the US is lower now in the Middle East than under Bush. No one trusts Obama's word because he seems to be equivocating and debating himself over his own policy. He is a weak leader and is only making the situation worse.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

"While I agree that the disagreement is an old one I think there has been a considerable shift in the tone and substance of the debate at it's core."

Good point, and what event served to shift the debate? Isn't this my point?

"Now the support has evaporated. The idea that Iraq broke domestic and international resolve for such activity flies in the face of what we've seen in Libya. "

Libya was similar to Iraq - all about oil - democracy perhaps a welcome side-order, with the majority of veto card-carrying states in agreement. But no, I reject this point and admire once more the masterful diplomacy from Barack Obama. Involvement without involvement takes some pulling off, especially as the US provided just about all of the ordinance in that particular intervention plus the Mad Dog of the middle east got his justs...

"If anything the intervention in Syria will be on an even smaller scale but is being met with fierce resistance to what should be a universally appealing middle ground of removing chemical weapons from the game board."

Because there is little geopolitical gain? OK, I guess we're on the same page after all. Should we trust the French in light of their past involvement? Or their lack of more recently?

"Which goes back to the age old question of whether all nations bring equal weight to the table."

I said all serious nations. The UN has proven to be a paper tiger despite the best initial intentions. Reform is badly needed I'm sure you'll agree, and not to better reflect the interests of the US or whoever, but by majority vote. Majority rule as American foreign policy purports to support on an international level.

"I also don't see the US or UK participating in anything that reduces their perceived sovereignty."

I don't see how an equal vote at the UN reduces sovereignty to any particular nation. It brings fairness, and the requisite democratic principles, does it not?

"Imagine if the bomb in Boston had been sarin, we're talking about hundreds of immediate victims and thousands of secondary victims that come in contact with the skin/clothing of any primary victims that ran away."

Then despite some differences, it would seem we're more or less in agreement on the line drawn in the sand....

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

How come the other two superpowers, Russia and China, aren't saying anything about a military strike in Syria?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

For Obama this is good timing to divert attention on all those "phony scandals" if military intervention takes place. Like it would be dragged out and more of those "sequester" cuts would take place. They may close the Smithsonian museums on weekdays for those school kids who also missed out on the White House tours last time.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Serrano, Russia is selling Syria weapons, and quite possibly supplying 'Advisors' to go with the more advanced equipment. They also have a naval base in country, and previously made noises about putting more troops there to ensure security against rebel attacks on the base. The Russians threatening military action would be on the same side as the Regime. Not against it. Indeed, if not for the US beating on a drum about this these past months, Russia might have sent in some troops (spetznaz, etc) to help in actual combat against the rebels.

China lacks the means to conduct continuous offensive operations in the Mediterranean, Russia can because the Med is about a stone's throw for them. Neither Russia or China is really a Super Power. I'd call them Great Powers, on par with the UK and France (and Japan in some ways).

My opinion on this? Damned if we do, Damned if we don't. I won't get into anything deeper/more specific.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

SuperLibSep. 01, 2013 - 04:37PM JST No one cared about Syria until the US threw it's hat into the ring and now people are speaking out whereas they were silent before.

... no one cared about Syria IN THE U.S.

Please don't make the mistake of confusing what's cared about in the U.S. with what other countries care about. I remember listening to a BBC "Have your say" podcast about Syria back in 2011, when the army fired on civilian protesters, and the BBC have kept up regular coverage since then (it appears regularly as a discussion topic in various BBC podcasts and forums).

The consensus in the U.K has been pretty clear from the outset, that Syria needs aid, needs diplomatic intervention, needs medical help on the ground... but that another invasion scenario like Iraq or Afghanistan would hurt more people than it helps.

Other newspapers have also been carrying news about Syria regularly. A friend of mine from Brazil mentioned it in passing a few months ago, so it was clearly a topic of discussion in Brazil too.

... so claiming that nobody cared until the U.S. got involved? Utterly untrue.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

give the U.S. a reason not to strike you down.

WTF ? The US is what ? The world's cop ?

People don't seem to grasp how, frankly, diabolical NBC's are when compared to conventional weapons.

Conventional weapons ? You live in 1850 or what ? That's baby-nukes in telecommanded missiles the US wants to strike Syrians with. What is conventional in that ? There is no more or less diabolical. High tech, low tech, same horror. Someone could have poisoned the wells with drinking water like they'd do in Middle-Age, would that be any better ? War is war. War is the evil. And you are getting into delusion because you watch only censored media. The mainstream media systematically minimize the impact of wars led by the US, NATO, etc, and selects the milder less shocking images while these last weeks the visual coverage of Syria has been dramatized. I don't mean that's not a hell in Damascus suburbs, as it is. But you think the images of Iraqi civilians being hit would have been more savory ? Not at all, and they could have shown them, day after day, new ones each time, during 2 years. They have not. Not only the US army has done a better job than Assad at preventing reporters to get on the field, but media have accepted (not being given a real choice) to self-censor. Otherwise, what would be general opinion about US army be at this day ? Obama wouldn't be talking about going to Syria but about recycling 80% of US army bases for civilian use. And that's a serious fear. Even only showing the images of servicemen wounded and killed during US actions is thought to be too much for the public. At some point, they were furious that a paper had published a photo with simply a few dozen US military ready to be shipped back home. That was a clean photo, quiet and all. Very much like this http://www.frenchbyfrench.com/advanced.php?artist=Arthur%20Rimbaud&title=Le%20Dormeur%20du%20val . As yes, they were all in meat bags, not really showing their excitement to go back home.

Imagine if the bomb in Boston had been sarin

We've had sarin in the subway Tokyo. And ? You have a wish list, you want to be in a plane or tower like 9.11 rather that in a sarin attack ? Isn't that childish ?

The US used chemical weapons in Vietnam - Agent Orange, Napalm.

And who said they no longer use newer versions of that ? The Gulf War Syndrome has been cleared from nuclear cause, so what is left as possibility besides chemical crap ? Of course, US army will swear they are clean on chem weapons. They are like Lance Armstrong as long as he was winning.

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Conventional weapons ? You live in 1850 or what ? That's baby-nukes in telecommanded missiles the US wants to strike Syrians with. What is conventional in that ? There is no more or less diabolical.

I believe you mean 1950's.

A conventional weapon is one that only inflicts immediate or primary damage to those in the immediate kill area of the weapon. A conventional high explosive or even a shrapnel weapon has a finite zone in which it can do damage and once the weapon is discharged it does not continue to do damage over time, whats done is done. Whether it's a dumb bomb or a guided missile it's not going to keep exploding after the initial detonation, it's job is done and the book is closed. NBC (nuclear, biological, and chemical) weapons do primary, secondary, and chronic damage in addition to contaminating the area for days, weeks, or even years in some instances.

War is war. War is the evil.

Considering it's one of the only things that the human race as a whole is good at I wouldn't go around knocking it. War and the ability to wage war is an important tool for any nation. In this instance the US would be using such a tool to prevent the use and proliferation of chemical arms, a cause that I personally find justifiable but is up to debate.

And you are getting into delusion because you watch only censored media.

Please enlighten me as to what media isn't somehow censored or bias in some way. I've got my reuters, CNN, BBC, Fox, Al Jazeera, Washington Post, World News, Consortium, Detroit Free press, NYT, and of course our good old JT on my computer's tracker so I think I've got a pretty good cross section going.

We've had sarin in the subway Tokyo. And ? You have a wish list, you want to be in a plane or tower like 9.11 rather that in a sarin attack ? Isn't that childish ?

Are you honestly asking somebody to pick how they'd rather die? An instant death or one that involves vomiting, voiding of bowels and bladder, uncontrollable muscle spasms, a blinding headache, blindness, and eventual death by violent convulsions and asphyxia. And here's the kicker, for a short period of time Sarin gas allows for secondary contamination which may kill first responders or anybody that may have tried to touch or move your body in an effort to help you. You'd compare the two deaths and call me childish for not wanting anybody to experience that.

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I believe you mean 1950's.

No, I mean 1850. Chemical weapons were already used experimentally on the battlefield in 1870 by poisoning bullets and bayonets. At that time, there were already some bans. And tthat never stopped anything. 1870 was the last convential war (by your definition as if you look at it, no so long before people had found fire arms to be not conventional). The big time for chemical warfare was 1914~18 as 4% of the deaths of the big war were due to gassing.

A conventional high explosive or even a shrapnel weapon has a finite zone in which it can do damage and once the weapon is discharged it does not continue to do damage over time,

Yes ? You think victims of a bomb all die in the second and nobody is left crippled and suffering for days to decades ? The countryside around my hometown have been battlefields in the 3 big wars and some people are still getting killed by explosive they happen to hit while digging for agriculture, road making or building purpose. There are thousands and thousands of bombs still there. Cleaning is an impossible task. There are really too many. They estimate we need 700 years to clean. That's like in any place that has been a battle field, and that's many countries now.

Are you honestly asking somebody to pick how they'd rather die?

To the someones that have their preferences about wars, slaughters... Of course, it's ridicule.

An instant death or

I was not aware that 9/11 only made instant deaths. There are even people that talk about "Ground Zero illnesses", and that means all the symptoms you list. and there too, people that went to rescue victims have died and/or been durably affected with ruined health. I took the example as these have been mediatised. That's also the type of health complications people are still dealing with in Iraq for instance, but that's not so fashionable as a topic. Away from the camera, away from the heart.

the US would be using such a tool to prevent the use and proliferation of chemical arms,

A tool that is better than the chems ? You're sure of that ? Then how an air strike would achieve the announced goal is very mysterious. To hope a result they should be occupying fully Syria and browsing the whole country for chemical arms. And that's in the hypothesis the weapons originate from there and not from neighbouring countries. So what occupy the whole Middle-East ?

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Madverts: That said, I fail to comprehend your refusal to acknowledge that the decision to invade Iraq under false pretences is ultimately the contributing factor behind the complete lack-lustre of a unified response - not just to the recent massacre via chemical weapons - but the whole Syrian civil war itself. I think it is fair to say that it is, at home and abroad.

I understand where you're coming from, but again I'd like to point out that Obama is not Bush. He should be judged on his own merits. He was against the Iraq war at a time when it was near political suicide, he had the US only play a limited role in Libya, he wound down the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, he's taken a hands off approach to Syria until now, and he's taking the unprecedented step of inviting a debate through Congress.

That's not to say that the US should be forgiven for all of our past sins, but I think Obama has demonstrated that he's not the previous administration in more ways than one. You can have a healthy amount of skepticism while still looking at the specifics of each situation and I don't think people are giving Obama that benefit. I know you've read the comments on here and you can see that a lot of times people are on automatic lash out mode and refuse to even have a conversation about the pros and cons. They also have a responsibility.

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Obama: "What message will we send if a dictator can gas hundreds of children to death in plain sight and pay no price"

The same message that the Russians, the Chinese and the rest of the world are sending?

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The big time for chemical warfare was 1914~18 as 4% of the deaths of the big war were due to gassing.

And those events, along with the Armenian genocide, are what laid the groundwork for modern international criminal courts and coined the phrase 'crime against humanity' in 1915.

The countryside around my hometown have been battlefields in the 3 big wars and some people are still getting killed by explosive they happen to hit while digging for agriculture, road making or building purpose.

And your point is what? A malfunctioning bomb is hardly the same as an intentional environmental containment. Conventional bombs don't drift into populated areas with the wind or leave lasting contaminants in the soil and in habitable areas.

There are even people that talk about "Ground Zero illnesses", and that means all the symptoms you list. and there too, people that went to rescue victims have died and/or been durably affected with ruined health.

I honestly have no idea where your going with this, or even if you do for that matter.

A tool that is better than the chems ? You're sure of that ? Then how an air strike would achieve the announced goal is very mysterious.

In short? Yes. Having chemical weapons proliferate in the region could be disastrous to US security and the security of any nation in that region. Also, allowing a government to use chemical weapons on its own citizens sets a dangerous precedent for the future if it is allowed to go unpunished.

To hope a result they should be occupying fully Syria and browsing the whole country for chemical arms. And that's in the hypothesis the weapons originate from there and not from neighbouring countries.

I don't think you actually read the article. I know full blown anti-US conspiracies are kind of a hobby but bear with me here. At no point has anybody in the US in any position of power even hinted at the possibility of putting US troops in Syria. Even a no-fly zone is only talked about in passing. The only thing that has been suggested so far is a strike on known Syrian chemical weapons manufacturing and storage sites.

As Sarin gas is the likely culprit in these attacks the idea of a foreign supplier is kind of unlikely considering it's short shelf life. Unless it is stored in a binary cell which is very large and very expensive to maintain, not something that you can transport on an old truck across the Syrian back-country. They're meant to be loaded into aircraft or artillery shells, not something that the rebel's have in abundance.

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"The regime in Syria . . . has chemical weapons, but they wouldn't use them around Damascus, five km from the [UN] committee which is investigating chemical weapons. Of course they are not so stupid as to do so," Muslim told Reuters on Aug. 27. He believes the attack was "aimed at framing Assad and provoking an international reaction." Muslim is convinced that "some other sides who want to blame the Syrian regime, who want to show them as guilty and then see action" are responsible for the chemical attack. The U.S. was exploiting the attack to further its own anti-Assad policies and should the UN inspectors find evidence that the rebels were behind the attack, then "everybody would forget it," Muslim shrugged. "Who is the side who would be punished? Are they are going to punish the Emir of Qatar or the King of Saudi Arabia, or Mr Erdogan of Turkey?"

And there remain the questions: Given the extent of the involvement of the "Mukhabarat Amriki" in opposition activities, how is it that U.S. intelligence did not know in advance about the opposition's planned use of chemical weapons in Damascus?

And if they did know and warned the Obama White House, why then the sanctimonious rush to blame the Assad Administration? Moreover, how can the Obama Administration continue to support and seek to empower the opposition which had just intentionally killed some 1,300 innocent civilians in order to provoke a U.S. military intervention?

http://www.worldtribune.com/2013/08/28/mounting-evidence-raises-questions-about-syrian-chemical-weapon-attack/

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At no point has anybody in the US in any position of power even hinted at the possibility of putting US troops in Syria. Even a no-fly zone is only talked about in passing. The only thing that has been suggested so far is a strike

Exactly, and that's why I don't even want to hear about that goofy project. They have even said they wouldn't do a thing to oust Assad. So that won't do a thing to help his victims.

known Syrian chemical weapons manufacturing and storage sites.

Known like Iraq's ones ? If they knew, they wouldn't need strikes, they could give the addresses and within 4 to 12 hours the UN workers would be there with trucks and they'd make the staff load their stock. Assad would not be in a position to refuse that. So what are they going to strike ? The thing is any chemical factory can be used for weapons, so they will strike randomly some plant making agriculture pesticides or cleaning detergents. That will cause money loss to owners of the businesses, possible deaths of workers or other civilians living or passing nearby, and local contamination to some extent. Impact on weapon production is really a wish. And no progress on the conflict matter.

Conventional bombs don't drift into populated areas with the wind

First there are enough target mistakes. Then the toxic ashes any explosion creates fly around, carrying abestos, etc. And in this case, supposing they bomb a chem warfare facility, is that not just as bad as using these products ? Wouldn't the smokes drift away ? Wouldn't the liquid go into soil and water ?

or leave lasting contaminants in the soil and in habitable areas.

I just told you that conventional armament have done that for 140 years in Europe. They attribute the extinction of salamanders in some areas where they were numerous to that contamination. The ancients always said -and now it's scientifically proven -that when a place became toxic for these animals, that was a sign that was just as bad for humans. If you travel to any area that has been a 20th century battlefield, take the phone-book "mine sweeping service", and go pay them a visit to see if they have time to chat with you while waiting emergency calls. They will show you what they do and why. I have relative that worked in companies making what you call "conventional" armaments (and other objects) and he is extremely pessimistic about the pollution of current time ammunitions.

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globalwatcher: So would you please tell us what you want to tell us? I am sure someone like Mr. David Frost would never do to hung us in air.

http://www.globalresearch.ca/us-on-brink-of-launching-war-against-syria-based-on-lies/5347550

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Known like Iraq's ones ?

The US was after nuclear materials in that conflict. While they did find about 500 chemical munitions in 06 and several bunkers worth of unfilled munitions in 09 (given short shelf life they would likely be filled immediately following production). The problem was that the US specifically went after nuclear material, their intent was not the chemical weapons possessed by Iraq.

If they knew, they wouldn't need strikes, they could give the addresses and within 4 to 12 hours the UN workers would be there with trucks and they'd make the staff load their stock. Assad would not be in a position to refuse that.

Because the UN has a sterling track record of that. They'd ferry them from false site to false site using them as a shield against US action for as long as the charade would hold up to the general assembly while gas attacks continue.

That will cause money loss to owners of the businesses, possible deaths of workers or other civilians living or passing nearby, and local contamination to some extent. Impact on weapon production is really a wish. And no progress on the conflict matter.

Nation building and property damage is no longer the business of the US military, we learned our lesson in Iraq. Now we conduct the strikes on the targets we want removed and we leave. Frankly I'd rather just see the whole thing sorted out with a strike on the Assad compound but that would be a direct breech of conventions signed by the US. The impending nature of a US strike is already known, anybody that works in a site used for chemical weapon's production is going their at their own risk at this point.

And in this case, supposing they bomb a chem warfare facility, is that not just as bad as using these products ? Wouldn't the smokes drift away ? Wouldn't the liquid go into soil and water ?

Most chemical agents are produced for binary combination, but the immediate area would be highly contaminated. But being as the US is making no secret of it's desire to strike such facilities, anybody interested in preserving their lives would be putting some distance between themselves and the chemical sites. Anybody that remains has had ample time to leave.

I have relative that worked in companies making what you call "conventional" armaments (and other objects) and he is extremely pessimistic about the pollution of current time ammunitions.

All heavy industry comes with pollution. Side effect contaminants should be controlled and brought down but you're drawing a false comparison. It's like the environmentalists that compare a coal plant to a chemical weapon, yes a plant produces chemicals, they aren't weaponized. I wouldn't breath them but to say they're even remotely similar to a chemical weapon is absurd.

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I think it should be clear by now that the whole Arab Spring is one big CIA/NSA operation to reform the Middle East. Good/Bad, I dunno. But people will die. Oil Oil Oil! Said back in 2001 after the fake 9/11 attacks, and I'll say it again.

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Said back in 2001 after the fake 9/11 attacks, and I'll say it again.

The families of 3,000 people will tell you that it wasn't "fake". Care to ask any of them about it?

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I agree with the above. There was nothing fake about the thousands that died in the attack, or the thousands that have died as a result of the wars that followed. I don't get making light of one thing to attempt a point about another thing.

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I believe FizzBit intended to say that 9/11 was a false flag. Many people did die in the attacks which was very real and not fake in that sense.

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I still don't see a well defined goal for attacking Syria. I also see, from Iraq and Afghanistan, that the US doesn't have the stomach to see the job through to the finish. Iraq is a mess and the Taliban are still the scourge of Afghanistan.

What I do see is a president who likes to use drones for extrajudicial killings (and who manages to get civilians killed "accidentally") who is now saying that, for some unproven reason, the US should start bombing Syria.

I never thought I'd agree with Putin on anything but here we are....

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Please US Congress stand up for yourself and just say NO to this idiot in the white house. He has no business trying to act all leaderly. He is an idiot and anyone who tries to stick their hand into the fan blades of the Middle East is nuts too.

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TheQuestionSep. 02, 2013 - 05:33AM JST A conventional weapon is one that only inflicts immediate or primary damage to those in the immediate kill area of the weapon. A conventional high explosive or even a shrapnel weapon has a finite zone in which it can do damage and once the weapon is discharged it does not continue to do damage over time, whats done is done.

... I read your definition and you know what leaped straight into my head, "Hey, that sounds a lot like the depleted uranium shells that the U.S. sprayed around Iraq!!" ... I've got a brilliant idea, let's get some ships and go and shell New York for a few days, that'll teach those darned Americans not to use chemical weapons!!!

... Oh, wait, the last time someone bombed a U.S. city (just two buildings really) the U.S. went ape and started spraying MORE chemical weapons all over the place. Guess that tactic doesn't work.

So when the next terrorist attack on the U.S. happens, don't come looking to me for sympathy (unless you had family who died, I have all the sympathy in the world for those directly affected), because I'll be quick to point out that the U.S. bought this on itself. Right now in Iraq, in Pakistan, there's a whole generation of children growing up without fathers, or without mothers, brothers or sisters, and they won't forget about. In 20 or 30 years once they're grown up they'll still remember, and if only 10% of them decide to become terrorists this "War on Terror" will have created more terrorists than it has killed.

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The knuckle draggers on the Right never see a war they don't want. What caused this change of heart?.... Hmmm

Oh yeah, a black man in the Oval Office...

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Obama asks Congress to authorize Syria strike

Because if he doesn't, then he has to take all of the responsibility himself. This way, he (and his sycophant supporters in the media) has a way to blame Republicans.

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