|
The Lake News Online
A blog 'for independent minds'
A war crime in Syria
email print
About this blog
Opinion page editor Rick Holmes and other writers blog about national politics and issues. Holmes & Co. is a Blog for Independent Minds, a place for a free-flowing discussion of policy, news and opinion. This blog is the online cousin of the Opinion ...
X
Political Views
Opinion page editor Rick Holmes and other writers blog about national politics and issues. Holmes & Co. is a Blog for Independent Minds, a place for a free-flowing discussion of policy, news and opinion. This blog is the online cousin of the Opinion section of the MetroWest Daily News in Framingham, Mass. As such, our focus starts there and spreads to include Massachusetts, the nation and the world. Since successful blogs create communities of readers and writers, we hope the \x34& Co.\x34 will also come to include you.
Recent Posts
April 22, 2014 11:10 a.m.
April 22, 2014 11:10 a.m.
April 21, 2014 11:10 a.m.
April 20, 2014 11:10 a.m.
April 20, 2014 11:10 a.m.
By Rick Holmes
Sept. 17, 2013 11:06 a.m.



Contrarian that he is, Rob has been siding with Putin and Assad on the chemical warfare issue, alleging without evidence that the insurgents were behind the Aug. 21 attack that killed hundreds of people.  Maybe he put up the offensive post below to keep us from discussing the UN Report that provides damning details of the attack.

The UN inspectors were not charged with determining blame, but experts reading the evidence say it points pretty squarely at Assad. From the NYT report:

“In two chilling pieces of information, the inspectors said that the remnants of a warhead they had found showed its capacity of sarin to be about 56 liters — far higher than initially thought. They also said that falling temperatures at the time of the attack ensured that the poison gas, heavier than air, would hug the ground, penetrating lower levels of buildings “where many people were seeking shelter.”

“The investigators were unable to examine all of the munitions used, but they were able to find and measure several rockets or their components. Using standard field techniques for ordnance identification and crater analysis, they established that at least two types of rockets had been used, including an M14 artillery rocket bearing Cyrillic markings and a 330-millimeter rocket of unidentified provenance.

“These findings, though not presented as evidence of responsibility, were likely to strengthen the argument of those who claim that the Syrian government bears the blame, because the weapons in question had not been previously documented or reported to be in possession of the insurgency.”

Anthony Cordesman gives NPR more details of how sophisticated the attack was, again pointing to the Assad regime’s chemical weapons ordinance command.  Plus there are reportedly phone conversations with Syrian government officials talking about the attack shortly after it happened.

Is the evidence clear enough to convince a jury? Don’t know and it doesn’t matter.  The attack provided the catalyst for an international effort to disarm Assad from his chemical arsenal. That’s a goal that everyone (OK, maybe not Rob) would have agreed on long before the weapons were actually used. If they can be collected and destroyed, it keeps them from being used not just by Assad, but by anyone else who might come to power in Syria or find some way to acquire them. Seems to me something to celebrate, though cautiously and conditionally, since follow-through is essential.





 

Recent Posts

    latest blogs

    • Community
    • National