Middle East “Is Like a Gunpowder Depot”, Cameron Backs Down, Obama Abandons UN Mandate for Imminent Syrian Strike

World Events and the Bible

(VideoThe Australian) – Barack Obama says he’s not yet signed off on a plan to strike Syria, but action appears likely after Washington abandoned the hunt for a last-minute UN mandate.

Political uproar in London, meanwhile, cast doubt on whether Britain will join American military action to punish President Bashar al-Assad’s regime for a chemical weapons attack, should the response take place before next week.

And a team of UN inspectors pressed on with its hazardous work in Damascus, testing victims of the alleged poison gas attack, which killed hundreds of people last week and threatens to draw reluctant Western states into a vicious civil war.

Mr Obama, who has warned that the use of chemical weapons in Syria would cross a US “red line,” said Washington had definitively concluded that the Assad regime was to blame for last week’s attack.

A senior White House official said the administration will brief senior US lawmakers tonight about classified intelligence about the chemical attack.

Asked how close he was to ordering a US strike, expected to start with cruise missile raids, Mr Obama told PBS NewsHour: “I have not made a decision.”

But he warned that US action would be designed to send a “shot across the bow” to convince Syria it had “better not do it again.”

He admitted that the limited strikes envisioned by the White House would not stop the killing of civilians in Syria but said he had decided that getting involved in a civil war that has already killed 100,000 people would not help the situation.

The US leader, who wants to seal a legacy of ending foreign wars, not getting into new ones, argued that it was vital to send a clear message not just to Syria, but around the world.

“We do have to make sure that when countries break international norms on weapons like chemical weapons that could threaten us, that they are held accountable.”

Earlier, Washington bluntly signalled that a UN Security Council resolution proposed by Britain that could have given a legal basis for an assault was going nowhere, owing to Russian opposition.

“We see no avenue forward, given continued Russian opposition to any meaningful Council action on Syria,” State Department deputy spokeswoman Marie Harf said.

“We cannot be held up in responding by Russia’s continued intransigence at the United Nations, and quite frankly the situation is so serious that it demands a response,” Ms Harf said.

British Prime Minister David Cameron was meanwhile slowed by a parliamentary revolt and was forced to pledge he would not order military action until the report by UN inspectors has been published.

Mr Cameron plans to put his case to MPs tonight, but with a majority in doubt on the issue a second vote, possibly early next week, will now have to take place before British forces can join the fray.

White House officials would not immediately say whether Washington would wait for Britain before launching any military action.

Syria’s nervous neighbours meanwhile stepped up their preparations for conflict as a strike appeared imminent.

Israel authorised a partial call-up of army reservists, Turkey said its forces were on heightened “vigilance,” and New York oil hit the highest level — $112.24 per barrel — for more than two years.

“The region is like a gunpowder depot,” Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei warned in a condemnation of the West’s reported military plans.

The United Nations says its inspection team needs two more days to finish their work. But it has given no deadline for reporting on whether chemical weapons have been used.

The inspectors went to the Ghouta district east of Damascus to collect blood, urine and hair samples from victims of the August 21 attack.

The United States, Britain and France blame Assad’s forces for the attack using chemical weapons, which are banned under an international convention.

The Syrian government has blamed the attack on “terrorist” rebels. Its UN ambassador, Bashar Jaafari, said Syrian soldiers had been gassed in three new incidents near Damascus since last week.

Russia, which has vetoed three UN Security Council resolutions aiming to increase pressure on Assad, has maintained its support for his government.

But it also evacuated more than 100 people from the Syrian city of Latakia.

Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told Britain’s Foreign Secretary William Hague that the international community must wait for the UN inquiry to be completed before taking any further steps, the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

In another conversation with UN Syria envoy Lakhdar Brahimi, Mr Lavrov said Western military strikes against Assad would destabilise the entire Middle East.

The Syrian government has meanwhile defiantly shrugged off the growing military threat.

Prime Minister Wael al-Halki accused the West of inventing excuses to intervene and warned that the country would become the “graveyard of the invaders.”

“Western countries, starting with the United States, are inventing fake scenarios and fictitious alibis to intervene militarily in Syria,” he was quoted as saying by state television.

UN leader Ban Ki-moon called on the international powers to head off conflict. He said more time must be given to the inspectors and made a new plea for the Security Council to overcome its divisions on Syria.

“Syria is the biggest challenge of war and peace in the world today. The body entrusted with maintaining international peace and security cannot be missing in action,” he said.

“The Council must at last find the unity to act. It must use its authority for peace,” Mr Ban said.

Mr Ban has been a frequent critic of Assad over the conflict, which erupted in March 2011 with anti-regime protests but soon escalated into a full-scale uprising in which more than 100,000 people have died, according to UN figures. – The Australian: Barack Obama gives up on bid for UN mandate on Syria 


4 thoughts on “Middle East “Is Like a Gunpowder Depot”, Cameron Backs Down, Obama Abandons UN Mandate for Imminent Syrian Strike

  1. Of the known US ships in the Med. armed with Tomahawk missles they have about 384 missles. At a cost of 1.5 million each. That amounts to $5.76 BILLION. For what? Another of Obozo’s lies! Who is paying for this dictatorial shit?
    I think that money would build an iron wall between mexico and the us.

    1. Obama is a communist bastard. I am not a person to call people names…..In his case thats exactly who he is….if you want, i can point you to web sites of which the writers give foot notes to where they got their info…….
      It is a sad state of affairs when our house and senate…well, supreme court also, have to bow down to an imposter….someone I believe is not a legal us citizen….he has not gone through the process to become a us citizen…..you can read all that out there too…….
      The news media has been involved in all this, either knowingly or not…I suspect that will change before too long….
      One of the major networks will realize that if they don’t get on the right side of truth, they will be seriously injuring their pocket book…soon as one gets the story honestly, the whole works will follow….least, seems to make sense to me….

      1. App. 95% of ALL the media in this country is owned by the Zionist so-called ‘jews’.

        Don’t expect to see any truth from them in this lifetime.

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