Syrian chemical weapon use has been confirmed by officials in the US and Europe. Representatives with The White House have confirmed that their conclusion will be discussed with reporters at a later time. A call is scheduled for this evening with several correspondents.
As reported by USA Today, former President Bill Clinton commented on the growing unrest in Syria earlier today. Clinton endorses increased use of force as President Bashar Assad’s government continues to clash with Syrian rebels. Clinton explains his point of view:
“Some people say, ‘Okay, see what a big mess it is? Stay out!’ I think that’s a big mistake.”
White House press secretary Jay Carney responded to Clinton’s opinion, simply stating that President Obama’s decision to use force will be based solely on “national security interests,” not public opinion.
As reported by The New York Times, the confirmation of Syrian chemical weapon use against rebel forces will only increase the pressure on President Obama.
The president’s administration remains divided on the use of force in Syria. Senior State Department officials have endorsed the use of aggressive military force. Officials have discussed the use of air-strikes to destroy airstrips, which may be used to deploy chemical weapons.
Other White House officials are hesitant to use force. Neither President Obama nor his senior advisers have made a solid decision in the matter. The President previously stated that, if chemical weapons were confirmed, he would be more likely to sanction the use of force.
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According to reports, Syria’s use of chemical weapons was confirmed in a governmental memo. The memo stated, in part, “the Assad regime has used chemical weapons on a small scale against the opposition multiple times in the last year.”
More than 90,000 people have lost their lives in the battle. It is estimated that Syrian chemical weapons are to blame for the deaths of up to 150 rebels.
The ultimate decision rests in the hands of President Obama. Syria’s use of chemical weapons has now been confirmed by the US and Europe, underlining the urgency of the situation.
[Image via Wikimedia]