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July 11, 2011

BREAKING: Government Backed Protesters Storm US Embassy Grounds In Damascus . UPDATE: US Says Embassy Grounds Cleared Of Attackers

Above The Post Update:

The attack is over.

U.S. embassy official tells Reuters attackers have left embassy complex, Syrian security response "slow and insufficiant"

Original Post:
I'm going to guess Obama won't be able to publicly ignore Syria for much longer.

Reuters reports that protesters loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad have broken into the U.S. embassy compound in Damascus, according to diplomats in the capital city.

Reuters reports that French Embassy guards have fired live ammunition on the protesters to stop the attack on the U.S. Embassy.

I have to admit, I wasn't thrilled when Obama decided to send an ambassador to Syria after Bush had left the post vacant for a few years in protest of the Assad regimes behavior. Honestly though, I like the cut of Ambassador Ford's jib.

Ford took an unauthorized visit to the town of Hamma and then went on facebook (yes, sounds lame but that's where the anti-government activist types are) to call out the regime.

The people in Hama have been demonstrating peacefully for weeks. Yes, there is a general strike, but what caused it? The government security measures that killed protesters in Hama. In addition, the government began arresting people at night and without any kind of judicial warrant. Assad had promised in his last speech that there would be no more arrests without judicial process. Families in Hama told me of repeated cases where this was not the reality. And I saw no signs of armed gangs anywhere not at any of the civilian street barricades we passed.

Hama and the Syrian crisis is not about the U.S. at all. This is a crisis the Syrian people are in the process of solving. It is a crisis about dignity, human rights, and the rule of law. We regret the loss of life of all Syrians killed, civilians and security members both, and hope that the Syrian people will be able to find their way out of this crisis soon. Respect for basic human rights is a key element of the solution.

Now Obama needs to step up (stop laughing or is that crying?) and say the US no longer views the Assad regime as an agent of change (a laughable proposition Obama offered up in his Mideast speech in May) but rather as a rogue regime that, like Gadaffi, has lost all legitimacy and has to go.


*I updated the headline since it's not clear the attackers got the embassy building itself.


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posted by DrewM. at 09:37 AM

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