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US Memo: Syria Used Chemical Weapons | Main | Overnight Open Thread (6-13-2013)
June 13, 2013

No Fly Zone for Syria?

Oh boy.

Following a deliberative review, our intelligence community assesses that the Assad regime has used chemical weapons, including the nerve agent sarin, on a small scale against the opposition multiple times in the last year. Our intelligence community has high confidence in that assessment given multiple, independent streams of information. The intelligence community estimates that 100 to 150 people have died from detected chemical weapons attacks in Syria to date; however, casualty data is likely incomplete. While the lethality of these attacks make up only a small portion of the catastrophic loss of life in Syria, which now stands at more than 90,000 deaths, the use of chemical weapons violates international norms and crosses clear red lines that have existed within the international community for decades. We believe that the Assad regime maintains control of these weapons. We have no reliable, corroborated reporting to indicate that the opposition in Syria has acquired or used chemical weapons.

Possible reactions include....a No-Fly Zone (aka War).

A U.S. military proposal for arming Syrian rebels also calls for a limited no-fly zone inside Syria that would be enforced from Jordanian territory to protect Syrian refugees and rebels who would train there, according to U.S. officials.

Asked by the White House to develop options for Syria, military planners have said that creating an area to train and equip rebel forces would require keeping Syrian aircraft well away from the Jordanian border.

To do that, the military envisages creating a no-fly zone stretching up to 25 miles into Syria which would be enforced using aircraft flown from Jordanian bases and flying inside the kingdom, according to U.S. officials.


McCain and Graham were just on the Senate floor doing their usual spiel. McCain says they'll hate us forever if we don't help. Well, they seem to have us for "helping" in Iraq and Afghanistan. Maybe they just hate us (which is ok because...right back at ya).

Graham said some really dumb stuff too.

First, he said it would be too dangerous to let Assad win and have chemical weapons. Seems to me, it's too dangerous to let al Qaeda affiliated rebels win and take over Assad's chemical weapons.

His other point was Jordan is teetering under the weight of refugees. How exactly is launching US aircraft from Jordan to fight Assad going to help stabilize the Jordanian regime? It seems Jordan is about to become target number 1 for Assad and his terrorist pals.

Now that we've confirmed that Assad is in for "the full Khadaffi", why wouldn't he up his use of chemical weapons and start handing them out to Hezbollah while he still can?

We should help whichever side is losing at any given moment but only to the extant that it enables them to fight on to take and inflict more casualties. There's no scenario where one side winning helps us.


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posted by DrewM. at 08:09 PM

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