USA and Syria

Israel Resource Review

Issue of August 28, 2013

Exclusive: Intercepted Calls Prove Syrian Army Used Nerve Gas, U.S. Spies Say

By: Noah Shachtman

Last Wednesday, in the hours after a horrific chemical attack east of Damascus, an official at the Syrian Ministry of Defense exchanged panicked phone calls with a leader of a chemical weapons unit, demanding answers for a nerve agent strike that killed more than 1,000 people. Those conversations were overheard by U.S. intelligence services, The Cable has learned. And that is the major reason why American officials now say they’re certain that the attacks were the work of the Bashar…

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Assad’s Cold Calculation: The Poison Gas War on the Syrian People

Evidence clearly suggests that Syria’s president has deployed chemical weapons. The latest poison gas attack should set aside once and for all any reservations about military intervention. The credibility of Western countries is on the line.
By: Hans Hoyng and Christoph Reuter

Why exactly, Syrian President Bashar Assad asked in mid-June, were so few people killed in the chemical weapons attacks he had allegedly ordered? The United States government had cited a death toll of 100 to 150 a few days earlier. But it would be “illogical,” Assad pointed out, to kill such a small number of enemies with chemical weapons, since they could easily be killed “using conventional weapons” instead. Indeed, the use of weapons of mass destruction to kill a…

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Choosing the Right Options in Syria

By: Anthony H. Cordesman

The U.S. has hard choices to make in Syria. Even if the U.S. does intervene militarily, the time window for its best option has already passed. President Obama may have had reason to be cautious and play King Log to President Bush’s King Stork, but the U.S. did not intervene when the rebels were strongest, the Assad regime most fragile, and limited U.S. support to the then dominant moderate rebel factions might well have pushed Assad out of power without dividing Syria along sectarian…

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America’s Impending Defeat in Syria

By: Barry Rubin

It’s really pretty simple. The American people understandably don’t want to go to war with Syria — not to mention with Syria’s patron, Iran — and especially not for the goal of putting the Muslim Brotherhood and murderous Islamists into power there. Going to war is a serious matter, to say the least. There’s no assurance how long it will take, how many lives it will cost, and what turns it may take. And the Middle East has just had several examples of these wars. …

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War-torn Syria Split into Three Regions

According to the Associated Press, two and a half years into Syria’s civil war, the once highly-centralized authoritarian state has effectively split into three distinct parts, each boasting its own flags, security agencies and judicial system. The regime of President Bashar Al Assad retains control of a corridor running from north to south along the Mediterranean shore, while large sections of Syria’s interior and southwest remain in rebel hands, and Syrian Kurds control the northeast….

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