White House Taking “Hard Look” At Syria Proposal To Avoid Strike

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J. Scott Applewhite / AP

Secretary of State John Kerry confers with U.S. Ambassador to Syria Robert Ford, right, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Sept. 4, 2013

The White House said Monday that the United States will take a “hard look” at a proposal from the Russian government for Syria to turn over its chemical weapons stockpiles to the international community, a move Press Secretary Jay Carney said is a “potential avenue” forward, even as military planning for a strike continues.

The surprise turn of events began Monday morning, when Secretary of State John Kerry floated a hypothetical scenario in which the Assad government could avert an attack by turning over all its chemical weapons. The Russian government then embraced that hypothetical, calling on Assad to turn over chemical weapons to the international community for disposal. Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem then appeared to endorse it, the Associated Press reported.

At a London press conference, Kerry was asked how Assad could avoid a U.S. military strike. Kerry replied, “He could turn over every single bit of his chemical weapons to the international community in the next week. Turn it over, all of it, without delay, and allow a full and total accounting for that. But he isn’t about to do it, and it can’t be done, obviously.”

Administration officials said they are deeply skeptical of the proffer by the Russians and Assad regime’s acceptance, blaming the Syrian government for the deaths of more than 1,400 in a chemical weapons attack last month. But Carney said the Syrian efforts to avoid a strike are a sign that the American strategy is working.

“What I think you’re seeing, in a very fluid environment, is with the threat of military action, Syria and Russia, which has clearly been an ally of Syria, coming up with potential proposals that might, if implemented, avert military action,” Carney said. “Now I think it’s important to say that we will study this, we will work with the Russians and speak with them, but it is also important to note, of course, that, you know, we would have some skepticism about the Assad regime’s credibility.”

Deputy National Security Adviser Tony Blinken added that the U.S. would “welcome” a decision to turn over the chemical weapons. “We’ve seen the reports, we want to take a hard look at the proposal,” Blinken said. “We’ll obviously discuss the idea with the Russians. And of course, we would welcome a decision and action by Syria to give up its chemical weapons.”

Kerry’s comments caught American officials in Washington off guard. Blinken told reporters it wasn’t a proper offer from the United States, even if it was received as such. “I believe he was answering a question speaking hypothetically about what if Assad would do that,” he said.

But the White House said that the developments have no bearing on its request for congressional authorization to strike targets in Syria to prevent the further use of chemical weapons. “It’s very important to note that it’s clear that this proposal comes in the context of the threat of U.S. action and the pressure that the president is exerting,” Blinken said. “So it’s even more important that we don’t take the pressure off and that Congress give the president the authority he’s requested.”

Following a meeting with Obama, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton echoed the White House talking points and Kerry’s hypothetical, saying a decision by the Syrian regime to turn over chemical weapons to the international community would be an “important step.”

17 comments
united_we_stand
united_we_stand

The Federal Reserve System allows our government to borrow unlimited funds to wage endless wars or fund whatever program the politicians think will help to better control the unruly people of the world. The central banking innovations brought to us by  marxists have created the world wars, a solid century of war, and a global economy based on fake money, slave labor, and constant war. Nations which have not adopted the ways of 'modern finance' are called 'rogue nations'. These nations are rogue because they still have leaders with actual power and say over the countries direction. While our leaders are just puppets to the bankers. The eventual plan of a world run by a financial elite was exposed by b. clintons mentor c. quigly. He supported these secret plans due to a belief that once this cabal controlled the entire world, there would be less wars in the future. This is a bad assumption. War puts the power to the top. War is in the elites interest. History shows giving a private cabal a monopoly over a nations currency hugely increases the chances of war, and war on a catastrophic levels never seen in history due to unprecedented levels of funding.  

Donplus
Donplus

I said this over and over again, this was a political punt to destabilize the congress just before the budget vote and the forth coming congressional election, the guy is a politician, if he wanted to hit Syria he would have done it long ago before talking to anyone just like in the case of OBL and Libya

Now, there just happened to be a gaff by Kerry, the very one that came back and caused trouble for the war in Vietnam and made a statement that kids should go to school or face being a political pun as he lost his bid for Presidency

This guys are never going to fight anyone even if it is in mexico next door, they will rather side with them and look for a way to covertly kill - that's their playbook 

HelmyElsaid
HelmyElsaid

Study the proposal(Legal case at USA court against Obama,USA government,UN,vodafone company-As my documents at : www.helmyelsaid.blogspot.com)

Heizzzenberg
Heizzzenberg

HARD LOOK! GRRRRRRRRRR....just so you know we mean business when we say stuff and umm get one-upped in international diplomacy by our adversaries in Russia...but still have to look tough and stuff...GRR HARD LOOK...at the COLD HARD GRR Facts. What a crock this Government is in all honesty, you scare no one.

jdyer2
jdyer2

Boy, Kerry really is a train wreck as Secretary of State.  He needs to think and coordinate with the WH before he opens his mouth.

arvay
arvay

Outrageous, AIPAC must really be leaning on these slime-balls, because they won't accept a reasonable offer. The y want a war, as an excuse to start a war that eventually drags in Iran. 

Would be nice if we had leaders looking out for America's interests, rather than Israel.


small_axe
small_axe

Yeah, it must have been accidental. Or maybe Putin had an epiphany. LOL.

We don't (and won't) know the inner workings of the closed door meetings, but you can be sure that this is the result of having a leader and administration who are capable of deep thinking and sophisticated, nuanced diplomacy. I'm inclined to believe that the face to face time between our leaders and Russia's this past weekend is not an incidental coincidence.

God help us all if we ever put the knee-jerk GOP back into the white house.

Donplus
Donplus

@arvay Arvay, i do understand how things look from the general point of view but as a matter of fact I do trust our Gov. atleast in the efforts to protect our interest in the threat of terror

The administration is one of the most careful of all since I have lived, all I can think is how they plan to manage the sequester plus borrowing ceiling cos I think this drumbeat of war was just to revert that as most core Reps have disagreed with each other and sided with the other, there is a study that dictates that "If I get you to agree with me on the very first thing I talk to you on a meeting then you most likely will agree with me in most other" now they have already agreed to lift the sequester just incase this turns out a full blown war - we can effectively support the Military but there is not going to be one, to turn back now will make them a flip-flopper and guess when your ready for the next mandate? the whole thing was a political stunt

RamonRoman
RamonRoman

@arvay Wow, you hit the nail right in the center of its head!

reallife
reallife

@small_axe"you can be sure that this is the result of having a leader and administration who are capable of deep thinking and sophisticated, nuanced diplomacy. "

hahahahahaha

LOL

priceless

now go back to your msnbc desk

LOL



RamonRoman
RamonRoman

@small_axe Finally some Americans are awaking to the fact that the real enemies of the USA are internal. The GOP and the TEA PARTY only look for the interest of the big corporations who only want those little wars that increase their purses, but that impoverish every time the American middle class and the poor.

arvay
arvay

@Donplus @arvay

Based on experience since Vietnam, I believe it's wise to consider almost anything "our" government tells us about important issues to be either a direct lie, or misleading in some way. The idea that this is all a ruse to stop the sequester -- well, THAT would just be another reason for impeachment, among the many that now pertain. 

You want s clearer picture of the forces at wok here? Try these items, for some reason not really covered in the mainstream media. The American people are overwhelmingly opposed to this idea of an attack. Here are the guys pushing against the American people, mostly in secret, like all those K Street lobbyists do. This is called "democracy."

http://www.thenation.com/blog/176040/obamas-syria-war-really-about-iran-and-israel#axzz2eFYXl9MD

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-09-04/adelson-new-obama-ally-as-jewish-groups-back-syria-strike.html

http://www.timesofisrael.com/jewish-organizations-in-us-support-syria-strike/

Got any theories about how this is shaping up? Why we aren't being told about people working behind the scenes to hoodwink the people and nullify their will? 

arvay
arvay

@Donplus 

Israel serves no interest that benefits the US. It's an albatross, an expensive one at that, and its leaders constantly flip us the bird. 

Donplus
Donplus

 Believe it or not they are serving a specified interest that benefit you too, "Lets not burn down the house just to kill a snake" we can modify somethings in future but it will take someone like Obama to do it but it takes alot of skeptics like you to call him out for not siding with Israel to start a war whenever they want one

arvay
arvay

@Donplus @arvay 

Cut off the brat's allowance, for one. Confine him to his room until he behaves. 

And, for one thing, many people in the world are descendants of people who've been persecuted or attacked. Russia, for example, has been invaded in a major way repeatedly.

Second, there is no continuity between the state of Israel and the ancient Judean kingdoms. These are not the same "people." They are Europeans and immigrants from other places, mostly, settled in the region against the will of the occupants. A western outpost that will never be accepted. 

Donplus
Donplus

@arvay @Donplus I agree with you that Isreal is a headache but what can one do about it? they are like your little kid brother that likes to throw stones at some passing car and run back in the house know that Daddy will take care of the situation or Big Brother, they have been used to the idea since the days of Moses till someone gets mad and either burn them alive or try to kill them all as in the Bible, they are a headache but I think they will listen some day when we fail them

Donplus
Donplus

@arvay @Donplus I bet the President knew even before the whole idea that it will be opposed, then when there was not enough opposition he changed gears and went to congress and if it might just come to pass they found a solution lol