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Subject: Syria using chemical weapons? rss

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Paul W
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http://m.washingtonpost.com/world/middle_east/us-intelligenc...

Reports are coming out that US intelligence agencies have made a preliminary conclusion that Assad forces have used chemical weapons in Syria, Israeli intelligence seems to have reached the same conclusion, but worth a greater degree of confidence. This seems to our the US in a tough appt, as we've declared the use of chemical weapons in Syria to be a red line,, but there's plenty not to like about the opposition as well.
 
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Moshe Callen
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ἄνδρα μοι ἔννεπε, μοῦσα, πολύτροπον, ὃς μάλα πολλὰ/ πλάγχθη, ἐπεὶ Τροίης ἱερὸν πτολίεθρον ἔπερσεν./...
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Yes, the US id it was a "red line" but they may or may not actually mean it. That remains to be seen.
 
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Snowball
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Well they already used that one as an excuse for an invasion, and it worked.
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Moshe Callen
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ἄνδρα μοι ἔννεπε, μοῦσα, πολύτροπον, ὃς μάλα πολλὰ/ πλάγχθη, ἐπεὶ Τροίης ἱερὸν πτολίεθρον ἔπερσεν./...
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HavocIsHere wrote:
Well they already used that one as an excuse for an invasion, and it worked.

True, but based on recent experience if Syria is the country the US has an issue with, they'd invade some random country in the vicinity instead. Perhaps Bahrain this time?
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Paul W
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Well, so far my takeaway is that I should've led with "Leadership failure: is Obama going to lead us into quagmire, or will he do nothing and prove that US threats are not to be taken seriously?"

edit... or perhaps "Former Paul Ryan campaign intern Assad charged with using chemical weapons".
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Moshe Callen
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fizzmore wrote:
Well, so far my takeaway is that I should've led with "Leadership failure: is Obama going to lead us into quagmire, or will he do nothing and prove that US threats are not to be taken seriously?"

Hm. I thought that my snipe would be clear in not referring to Obama or has he overseen an invasion I missed? It's so hard to keep track of US invaions these days.
 
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Paul W
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No no, my response had nothing to do with what you said, just the dearth of replies in this thread...I'm not very good at the whole "drumming up interest by foaming at the mouth" thing.
 
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J
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It manufactured them in its chemical weapons plants.
 
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Boaty McBoatface
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jmilum wrote:
It manufactured them in its chemical weapons plants.
That I believe is currently under siege. So have they used them, or was there an accident (assuming this is not all made up, like last time)?
 
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Boaty McBoatface
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bjlillo wrote:
I wonder where Syria's chemical weapons came from.
At least, for once, not from the US.
 
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slatersteven wrote:
jmilum wrote:
It manufactured them in its chemical weapons plants.
That I believe is currently under siege. So have they used them, or was there an accident (assuming this is not all made up, like last time)?

Under siege? There is no doubt that Syria has chemical weapons manufacting facilities.
 
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Boaty McBoatface
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jmilum wrote:
slatersteven wrote:
jmilum wrote:
It manufactured them in its chemical weapons plants.
That I believe is currently under siege. So have they used them, or was there an accident (assuming this is not all made up, like last time)?

Under siege? There is no doubt that Syria has chemical weapons manufacting facilities.
Nor did I say they do not, I just pointed out (that according to the Beeb last night) the facilities are (or were) under siege by rebels.
 
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The alleged uses were from Feb. and March. If they are just under siege now, then that would not be relevant to the alleged uses of chemical weapons then.
 
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Boaty McBoatface
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jmilum wrote:
The alleged uses were from Feb. and March. If they are just under siege now, then that would not be relevant to the alleged uses of chemical weapons then.
Alleged locations of Chemical weapons plants.

al-Safira, Contested since February 2013 currently under attack from the government.

Hama, Fighting in the area since late 2012.

Homs, rebels controlled and since May 2011 under siege by government forces.

Latakia, Fighting in the area (since January).

Palmyra, fighting in the area since last September.

Its worthy of note that the US has not announced the location of the 'attack' or it's extent (or the number of casualties). In fact (as far as I can find) there appears to have been only one family affected.

It is also worthy of note that at least one plant is (or at least is in a town that is) in rebel hands, and that the Assad regime has claimed the rebels are using Sarin. If this turns out to be the case will this mean we will intervene to stop rebel chemical attack in support of Assad? Are we going to be even handed?
 
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So you think that the rebels have taken control of a chemical weapons facility in an active fighting region, learned how to run the facilities, and manufacture their own sarin? Assad's stockpiles of sarin are not kept in the manufacturing facilities, btw.
 
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jmilum wrote:
So you think that the rebels have taken control of a chemical weapons facility in an active fighting region, learned how to run the facilities, and manufacture their own sarin? Assad's stockpiles of sarin are not kept in the manufacturing facilities, btw.


Did you believe Iraq was an imminent threat?

In which case, if the answer is yes, your know-it-all attitude is worth about as much as our governments' intelligence operations.

There is a history of this sort of thing: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gulf_of_Tonkin_incident

Or maybe you actually believe that Assad would be stupid enough to use chemical weapons on less than five people, so that the U.S. would have the cover to initiate a no-fly zone, allowing them to move towards overt military action on the ground in Syria.

People really will believe anything their government tells them.

Carry on Apparatchik.
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No, I do not believe that Iraq was an imminent threat. I am glad this time that the U.S. is taking a more measured approach to the intelligence reports as evidenced by the statement from the White House and he response so far.

Assad has shown what type of person he is already.
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Dan Schaeffer
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jmilum wrote:
So you think that the rebels have taken control of a chemical weapons facility in an active fighting region, learned how to run the facilities, and manufacture their own sarin? Assad's stockpiles of sarin are not kept in the manufacturing facilities, btw.


So you are stating categorically that the rebels have not come into possession of any chemical weapons and have not used them? The reports are (a) wrong or (b) lies? On what basis do you make such a claim?

And if you are not stating any of that categorically, then what is your point? The possibility leads to perfectly valid questions: Assuming both sides are using chemical weapons, what should be the US (and world) response to the rebels' use, and how, if at all, should it differ from or affect the US (and world) response to the Assad regime's use?
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I didn't state anything categorically. We know for a fact that Syria has chemical weapons because they stated they did. We don't know that the rebels do. We also have reports that the rebels have been dosed. I have seen no reports that the Syrian army has been dosed. I suppose they could both dose themselves in some ploy, but then we could speculate till the cows come on in that respect.

The rebels are not a unified whole, so really the is no way to say that the rebels do this or the rebels do that as there are many factions and disparate groups. The Syrian army is unified under Assad. After this is over I'm sure thee will be war crimes to settle on both sides.

All I'm saying is this: The Syrian regime admitted to having stockpiles of chemical weapons. Reports are now coming out that they have been used against the rebels and the U.S. is looking into those reports. Trying to say that, oh well the rebels may have attacked the manufacturing plants and may have made their own, or may have attacked a stock pile and may have captured some stuff, etc. doesn't seem to be helping the issue of figuring out what is actually up with the people that were dosed.
 
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Boaty McBoatface
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jmilum wrote:
So you think that the rebels have taken control of a chemical weapons facility in an active fighting region, learned how to run the facilities, and manufacture their own sarin? Assad's stockpiles of sarin are not kept in the manufacturing facilities, btw.
Why not (and I don't know if anyone is using Sarin, I am just not going to take sides if flimsy evidence)? It's not as if it's impossible for non-governments to make chemical agents.
 
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Boaty McBoatface
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jmilum wrote:
I didn't state anything categorically. We know for a fact that Syria has chemical weapons because they stated they did. We don't know that the rebels do. We also have reports that the rebels have been dosed. I have seen no reports that the Syrian army has been dosed. I suppose they could both dose themselves in some ploy, but then we could speculate till the cows come on in that respect.

The rebels are not a unified whole, so really the is no way to say that the rebels do this or the rebels do that as there are many factions and disparate groups. The Syrian army is unified under Assad. After this is over I'm sure thee will be war crimes to settle on both sides.

All I'm saying is this: The Syrian regime admitted to having stockpiles of chemical weapons. Reports are now coming out that they have been used against the rebels and the U.S. is looking into those reports. Trying to say that, oh well the rebels may have attacked the manufacturing plants and may have made their own, or may have attacked a stock pile and may have captured some stuff, etc. doesn't seem to be helping the issue of figuring out what is actually up with the people that were dosed.
http://www.aljazeera.com/news/middleeast/2013/04/20134271203... "Last month, both the Syrian government and rebels accused each other of using chemical weapons in an attack on the village of Khan al-Assal outside the northern city of Aleppo."

We should have no more wars based upon dodgy intelligence information provided by rebel factions that have a vested interest in getting the west involved in a war they cannot win without us.

 
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Quote:
Syria, however, has still not allowed a team of experts into the country because it wants the investigation limited to the single Khan al-Assal incident, while the UN chief is urging the Syrian government to accept an expanded UN probe.


So the rebels have been claiming Syria is using chemical weapons, and then Syria also claims it, but Syria won't let inspectors in the country to check on it. Odd that.
 
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slatersteven wrote:
We should have no more wars based upon dodgy intelligence information provided by rebel factions that have a vested interest in getting the west involved in a war they cannot win without us.

Yes, I agree and so does the Obama administration. But it appears that Assad does not as he won't let UN inspectors in the country to check things out.
 
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Boaty McBoatface
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jmilum wrote:
slatersteven wrote:
We should have no more wars based upon dodgy intelligence information provided by rebel factions that have a vested interest in getting the west involved in a war they cannot win without us.

Yes, I agree and so does the Obama administration. But it appears that Assad does not as he won't let UN inspectors in the country to check things out.
Why would he?
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Boaty McBoatface
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jmilum wrote:
Quote:
Syria, however, has still not allowed a team of experts into the country because it wants the investigation limited to the single Khan al-Assal incident, while the UN chief is urging the Syrian government to accept an expanded UN probe.


So the rebels have been claiming Syria is using chemical weapons, and then Syria also claims it, but Syria won't let inspectors in the country to check on it. Odd that.
Not really, given that the last time the USA demanded inspectors visited a country they also sent in CIA spies with them.

Syria has refused to accept inspectors that are from the USA and the UK, guess what the rebels have refused to allow Russian and Chinese inspectors, so both sides are putting up barriers.
 
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