News / USA

US Strike on Syria May Have Unintended Consequences

US Strike on Syria May Have Unintended Consequencesi
X
September 07, 2013 3:17 AM
A U.S. attack against Syria could have unintended consequences and may not deter Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, some Middle East analysts say. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports from Washington.

US Strike on Syria May Have Unintended Consequences

Meredith Buel
A U.S. attack against Syria could have unintended consequences and may not deter Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, some Middle East analysts say.

The cruise missiles are ready. The targets are being identified.

President Barack Obama is making the case for a U.S. attack.

“It is limited. It does not involve boots on the ground. This is not Iraq and this is not Afghanistan,” said Obama.

But analysts say Syria's military can withstand a limited strike. Some analysts are concerned that anything short of a robust attack may not deter Damascus.

Syrian analyst Elizabeth O’Bagy said, "If there is not an adequate response to the use of chemical weapons, it is very likely that he will continue to use them.”

Obama's decision to seek Congressional approval has delayed any attack, reportedly allowing Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to move troops and military equipment to civilian areas.

U.S. military assets that could be used in an operation in Syria.U.S. military assets that could be used in an operation in Syria.
x
U.S. military assets that could be used in an operation in Syria.
U.S. military assets that could be used in an operation in Syria.
Former CIA officer and Middle East specialist Reuel Marc Gerecht said, “I would imagine that the Syrians, since they have had so much time, have taken their materiel [the French term for military equipment] and put it in places that are not easily hit by a cruise missile. It would require fighter bombers to do that.”

And U.S. warplanes may be in the mix. An aircraft carrier is now within striking distance of Damascus.

Syrian opposition groups are concerned limited strikes will not tip the balance on the battlefield.  

Khaled Saleh of the Syrian National Coalition wants regime change.

“It is time to move the power from the family, the mafia that controlled Syria for the last 40 years. Now it is time to move that power into the hands of the Syrian people,” said Saleh.

With Western warnings about its controversial nuclear program, Iran, too, is watching.

“If we do not do something in Syria, I think the odds of the Iranians taking us seriously are zero,” said Gerecht.

Polls show many war-weary Americans are opposed to involvement in Syria’s civil war.

The president also has an uphill battle convincing Congress.

Senior analyst Michael O’Hanlon is more optimistic. “In the end, I don’t believe the administration is going to get a lot of flak from the American public, from the Congress, or from the allies. On the other hand, if they miscalculate or something goes wrong, all bets are off.”

On Tuesday night Obama will address the American people, while the war in Syria grinds on.

  • This citizen journalism image provided by Edlib News Network shows anti-Syrian regime protesters hold a poster depicting U.S. President Barack Obama during a demonstration in Kafr Nabil, Idlib province, Sept. 20, 2013.
  • Children sit along a damaged street filled with debris in the besieged area of Homs, Sept. 19, 2013.
  • Debris is seen on the ground after what activists said was shelling by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad in the al-Myassar neighborhood of Aleppo, Sept. 19, 2013.
  • An injured man walks along a street after what activists said was shelling by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad in the al-Myassar neighborhood of Aleppo, Sept. 19, 2013.
  • This citizen journalism image provided by The Syrian Revolution against Bashar Assad shows a Syrian military tank on fire during clashes with Free Syrian army fighters in Joubar, a suburb of Damascus, Sept. 18, 2013.
  • A member of the Shohadaa Badr Brigade, which operates under the Free Syrian Army, stands in shooting position behind sandbags in Ashrafieh, Aleppo, September 17, 2013.
  • Free Syrian Army fighters walk through rubble inside the old city of Aleppo, Sept. 16, 2013.
  • A Free Syrian Army fighter carries his weapon as he stands on rubble of damaged buildings in al-Aseela neighborhood near Aleppo's historic citadel, Sept. 13, 2013.
  • In this citizen journalism image provided by the United media office of Arbeen, a Syrian protester chants slogans during a demonstration in Arbeen, a suburb of Damascus, Sept. 13, 2013.

You May Like

China May Be Biggest Winner From Ukraine Crisis

Missile sales, oil and gas shipments are among many areas that may drive Beijing and Moscow closer together in coming years More

Obama Faces Chaotic World, Limits of Power

Current foreign policy issues bring into focus challenges for US policymakers who are mindful of Americans' waning appetite for overseas military engagements More

SADC Meeting Lesotho Officials to Resolve Stalemate

Official says regional bloc has been engaged with leaders in Lesotho to resolve political disagreement that led to coup attempt More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Syed Azmathullah Khaderi from: India
September 07, 2013 12:13 PM
What is the difference between the tolerated endless drone killings of Obama and a suspected one-time chemical attack by Assad. Assad appears more sociable in comparison.


by: grasspress from: east bay ca
September 07, 2013 10:05 AM
'Syrian analyst Elizabeth O’Bagy said, "If there is not an adequate response to the use of chemical weapons, it is very likely that he will continue to use them.”'

and if there is no response he will continue to use them.

In Response

by: Joshua Flynn from: UK
September 07, 2013 5:52 PM
"and if there is no response he will continue to use them."

You're assuming he even used them in the first place. The previous sarin gas attack turned out to be the Syrian rebels, and the basis for accusation in this case is a youtube video but no solid evidence - please be aware the Syrian rebels have access to sarin gas (ironically also evidenced in youtube videos).

But sure, whatever. Believe the 'rar rar' rhetoric which tries to rush ahead of any form of analysis by the UN (who are skeptical of the claims from the west given the west were wrong about it being Assad the last time).


by: Markt
September 07, 2013 7:27 AM
just watched that short video above, and it makes my heart ache in sorrow. For every action, there is an equal reaction. Every shot fired, every rocket used, there is a target that is getting hit, a person getting killed. And we want to add to that misery and death? I have seen the effects of battle, as a former Marine, it is not something I would wish to see again, or even know of it happening again. Anyone who has ever fired a weapon in anger in a combat role would never want to do so again. It saddens me beyond belief just to know this is happening.
And this President wants to heap more suffering on a people already suffering and dying....
Enough already, please stop this nonsense...my heart cannot endure any more of it.

In Response

by: Mo Lang Cho from: Hanoi- Viet Nam
September 07, 2013 10:15 AM
Send to Markt
Nobody likes the war but how to avoid it?
Yes, if the war happens there are people die. But there are still people die in peace, are'nt they?
I am a vietnamese so that I understand the cost of the war. The war is far away about 30 years, but living in peace without freedom, how does the peace cost? what the mean is?
In my opion, the crisis or problem can not solve by the talk so it can only solve by the war to end the problem. Do you know there are alot of people always likely to die for freedom? Because of your opinion the freedom that is the best worth.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
West Africa Ebola Vaccine Trials Possible by Early 2015i
X
Carol Pearson
August 30, 2014 7:14 PM
A U.S. health agency is speeding up clinical trials of a possible vaccine against the deadly Ebola virus that so far has killed more than 1,500 people in West Africa. If successful, the next step would be a larger trial in countries where the outbreak is occurring. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
Video

Video West Africa Ebola Vaccine Trials Possible by Early 2015

A U.S. health agency is speeding up clinical trials of a possible vaccine against the deadly Ebola virus that so far has killed more than 1,500 people in West Africa. If successful, the next step would be a larger trial in countries where the outbreak is occurring. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
Video

Video Survivors Commemorate 70th Anniversary of Nazi Liquidation of Jewish Ghetto

When the German Nazi army occupied the Polish city of Lodz in 1939, it marked the beginning of a long nightmare for the Jewish community that once made up one third of the population. Roughly 200,000 people were forced into the Lodz Ghetto. Less than 7,000 survived. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, some survivors gathered at the Union League Club in Chicago on the 70th anniversary of the liquidation of the Lodz Ghetto to remember those who suffered at the hands of the Nazi regime.
Video

Video Cost to Raise Child in US Continues to Rise

The cost of raising a child in the United States continues to rise. In its latest annual report, the U.S. Department of Agriculture says middle income families with a child born in 2013 can expect to spend more than $240,000 before that child turns 18. And sending that child to college more than doubles that amount. VOA’s Deborah Block visited with a couple with one child in Alexandria, Virginia, to learn if the report reflects their lifestyle.
Video

Video Chaotic Afghan Vote Recount Threatens Nation’s Future

Afghanistan’s troubled presidential election continues to be rocked by turmoil as an audit of the ballots drags on. The U.N. says the recount will not be completed before September 10. Observers say repeated disputes and delays are threatening the orderly transfer of power and could have dangerous consequences. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports.
Video

Video Ukraine Battles Pro-Russia Rebel Assault

After NATO concluded an emergency meeting to discuss the crisis in eastern Ukraine, the country is struggling to contain heavy fighting near the strategic port of Mariupol, on the Azov Sea. Separatist rebels are trying to capture the city, allegedly with Russian military help, and Ukraine's defense forces are digging in. VOA's Daniel Schearf spoke with analysts about what lies ahead for Ukraine.
Video

Video Growing Business Offers Paint with a Twist of Wine

Two New Orleans area women started a small business seven years ago with one thing in mind: to help their neighbors relieve the stress of coping with a hurricane's aftermath. Today their business, which pairs painting and a little bit of wine, has become one of the fastest growing franchises across the U.S. VOA’s June Soh met the entrepreneurs at their newest franchise location in the Washington suburbs.
Video

Video Ebola Vaccine Trials To Begin Next Week

The National Institutes of Health says it is launching early stage trials of a vaccine to prevent the Ebola virus, which has infected or killed thousands of people across West Africa. The World Health Organization says Ebola could infect more than 20,000 people across the region by the time the outbreak is over. The epidemic has health experts and governments scrambling to prevent more people from becoming infected. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Asian Bacteria Threatens Florida Orange Trees

Florida's citrus fruit industry is facing a serious threat from a bacteria carried by the Asian insect called psyllid. The widespread infestation again highlights the danger of transferring non-native species to American soil. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Aging Will Reduce Economic Growth Worldwide in Coming Decades

The world is getting older, fast. And as more people retire each year, fewer working-age people will be there to replace them. Bond rating agency Moody’s says that will lead to a decline in household savings; reducing global investments - which in turn, will lead to slower economic growth around the world. But experts say it’s not too late to mitigate the economic impact of the world’s aging populations. Mil Arcega has more.
Video

Video Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

U.S. President Barack Obama has ruled out sending ground troops to Iraq to fight militants of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, despite officials in Washington describing the extremist group as the biggest threat the United States has faced in years. Henry Ridgwell reports from London on the growing uncertainty over whether the West’s response to ISIS will be enough to defeat the terrorist threat.
Video

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

The United States along with European and Mideast allies are considering a broader assault against Islamic State fighters who have spread from Syria into Iraq and risk further destabilizing an already troubled region. But as VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports, confronting those militants could end up helping the embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Video

Video Made in America Socks Get Toehold in Online Fashion Market

Three young entrepreneurs are hoping to revolutionize the high-end sock industry by introducing all-American creations of their own. And they’re doing most of it the old-fashioned way. VOA’s Julie Taboh recently caught up with them to learn what goes into making their one-of-a-kind socks.
Video

Video Americans, Ex-Pats Send Relief Supplies to West Africa

Health organizations from around the world are sending supplies and specialists to the West African countries that are dealing with the worst Ebola outbreak in history. On a smaller scale, ordinary Americans and African expatriates living in the United States are doing the same. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.

AppleAndroid