News / Middle East

US Intel Chief Calls Syria Conflict 'Apocalyptic Disaster'

U.S. intelligence chief James Clapper testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington Feb. 11, 2014.
U.S. intelligence chief James Clapper testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington Feb. 11, 2014.
VOA News
U.S. intelligence chief James Clapper is describing the situation in Syria as an "apocalyptic disaster" and says pictures of torture victims are likely genuine.
Clapper told a U.S. Senate committee Tuesday that the war has killed more than 134,000 people and created nearly 10 million refugees.
Clapper said he has no reason to doubt that smuggled police photographs of tortured Syrian prisoners are real.  He calls them "terrible" and says it is difficult to imagine they could have been fabricated.
Clapper told the senators that U.S. intelligence expectations from the current Syrian peace talks in Geneva are "pretty modest."
United Nations-Arab League envoy Lakhdar Brahimi described the talks Tuesday as laborious with little progress.
Brahimi said negotiators from the Syrian government and the opposition are doing their best to make the process "take off," but stressed that more cooperation is needed.

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Comment Sorting
by: carlloeber from: ca
February 12, 2014 3:16 AM
President Obama appears to be a coward when it comes to Syria. I am ashamed. I have been to Aleppo.President Obama could have removed the dictator 1200 days ago and saved hundreds of thousands of lives but like Bill Clinton he failed to save millions of lives because he is a coward who never volunteered for any military service himself he does not respect military power used for humanitarian purposes this is what the world needs. We cannot depend on the UN Security Council which is controlled by the toph power by dictators save millions of lives in the world we need a president who will act to send volunteers with military power to save innocent people in the world such as the Syrians.
In Response

by: Anonymous
February 13, 2014 9:38 AM
Portraying the rebels as innocent victims of their government is far too simplistic a view of what is happening in Syria.

There is no winning for the US in this war. Why should Americans die to win a sectarian conflict for the Sunni Arabs (and inadvertantly assist the genocide that would follow against the Alawites attempting to suppress them)?

In this the President is correct. Stay out of the conflict, and let the Syrians play out their sectarian hatreds in the context of the Saudi/Iranian competition for hegemony.
In Response

by: Anonymous
February 12, 2014 11:30 AM
You mean that the president should by willing through personal strength (i.e. contrary to being a coward) to oppose the combined forces of the US congress (both houses, both parties) and the overwhelming majority of the American people?

The reason that comments like yours do not resonnate beyond the hate-filled fringe on the web is because you are the person that is out of touch with reality - not the president. He's got it right.

Take charge of your life and go back to Aleppo. Join the brigades and fight for whatever it is your kind are fighting for in that great sand dune known as the Middle East.

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