51 U.S. Diplomats Urge Strikes Against Assad in Syria



WASHINGTON — More than 50 State Department diplomats have signed an internal memo sharply critical of the Obama administration’s policy in Syria, urging the United States to carry out military strikes against the government of President Bashar al-Assad to stop its persistent violations of a cease-fire in the country’s five-year-old civil war.

The memo, a draft of which was provided to The New York Times by a State Department official, says American policy has been “overwhelmed” by the unrelenting violence in Syria. It calls for “a judicious use of stand-off and air weapons, which would undergird and drive a more focused and hard-nosed U.S.-led diplomatic process.”

Such a step would represent a radical shift in the administration’s approach to the civil war in Syria, and there is little evidence that President Obama has plans to change course. Mr. Obama has emphasized the military campaign against the Islamic State over efforts to dislodge Mr. Assad. Diplomatic efforts to end the conflict, led by Secretary of State John Kerry, have all but collapsed.

But the memo, filed in the State Department’s “dissent channel,” underscores the deep rifts and lingering frustration within the administration over how to deal with a war that has killed more than 400,000 people.


They better mind there own business because foxnews.com/world/2016/06/17/kremlin-warns-washington-against-striking-assad-forces.html


My guess is that it’s too late.

Well before Russia decided to protect Assad, Turkey volunteered ground troops to go into Syria to defeat ISIS. It’s requirement was that we establish a “no fly” zone over the theatre of operations. Obama didn’t want to do it because he didn’t want to get into direct conflict with Assad’s forces. Kind of an extension of his “no more Iraqs” doctrine (inapplicable to Afghanistan and Libya, of course).

Then Russia got involved as Assad’s protector, after it became clear we were not going to intervene against Assad. So are we now going to shoot down Russian planes now that Putin has committed Russia to Assad?


Thank God for the S-400.


We are commanded to have no strange gods before us, including Russia.


Just one bomb should do the trick,
And not go down the road of the Iraq fiasco


I said that I thanked God. God is not the S-400. Do you want to say thank Dialga, Palkia, and Giratina?

I didn’t say Russia was a God, just that Russia is not engaged in acts of aggression, and that it is defending its interests.


How can one be assured that no Russian dies in the blast?

Again, I think it’s now too late to unseat Assad by any direct means. Putin was wary and clever. He waited until he was utterly certain Obama would do nothing, and then he put his people into the scene in a big way, thus closing the door on the administration.



But the most plausible explanation is that Mr. Kerry more or less agreed with his diplomats.

Their urgent call for the United States to take stronger military action against President Bashar al-Assad of Syria closely resembles the arguments that administration officials say Mr. Kerry has been making in Situation Room debates as he has tried to force Mr. Assad to abide by a cease-fire and agree to a transition of power.

Mr. Kerry, these officials said, has told President Obama that he is operating without any leverage in Syria, and that unless the United States increases the pressure on Mr. Assad, the embattled leader will simply wait out the end of Mr. Obama’s term.

“For quite some time, Secretary Kerry has had real reservations about the president’s approach to Syria,”


“Russia needs to understand that our patience is not infinite. In fact it is very limited with whether or not [Bashar] al-Assad is going to be held accountable,”

But Ms. Friedman added that “the president has always been clear that he does not see a military solution to the crisis in Syria, and that remains the case.”

I have to agree with Obama on this point, though for different reasons as the priority is indeed Isis, but because he also underestimated Isis both the Syria and the Iraq humanitarian crisis has grown. Nevertheless he has quite a mess with Iraq and his priority of Isis and radical Islamic terrorism abroad and home.

Still the dissent is quite alarming and needs to be explored deeper imho and especially since Kerry seems to agree. If they all are concerned its right to explore its basis.


Hillary’s thinking a year ago was similar to Kerry. I don’t know if she amended her position since.

Hillary Clinton said Saturday night that the United States does not have the luxury of focusing only on defeating the Islamic State but must take out Syrian leader Bashar al Assad, as well.

“The reason we are in the mess we are in … is because of Assad,” Clinton said. “I wish it could be either or.”

It was a striking contrast between the former secretary of state and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) who believes the United States must focus on ISIL for now and Assad later.

“Getting rid of dictators is easy, but before you do that you have to think about what happens the day after,” Sanders said.

Clinton continued to argue that it was important for Syrian fighters to see Assad gone in order to get more buy in on the ground.

“We will not get the support on the ground in Syria to dislodge ISIS if the fighters there who are not associated with ISIS but whose principal goal of getting rid of Assad don’t believe there is a political, diplomatic channel that is ongoing,” Clinton said.

May 20, 2016 - Donald Trump on Friday said that he would not pursue military action against Syrian dictator Bashar Assad but would go after the Islamic State .


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