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U.N. Report Implicates Assad, Case Strengthens on Chemical Weapons

U.N. report implicates Assad in chemical weapons attack on Syrian civilians.

U.N. report implicates Assad in chemical weapons attack on Syrian civilians.

An analysis of the report posted online by the Arms Control Association, a Washington-based advocacy group, said “the additional details and the perceived objectivity of the inspectors buttress the assignment of blame to Bashar al-Assad’s Syrian government.” [New York Times]

FEW DOUBT who’s to blame in the chemical weapons attack on civilians in Syria, but the new U.N. report implicates President Bashar al Assad even further.

Britain’s ambassador, Sir Mark Lyall Grant, said that the new evidence found in the U.N. report’s annexes proves, “in our view, that there is no remaining doubt that it was the regime that used chemical weapons.”

One of the things that points to Assad was “remnants of a warhead they had found showed its capacity of sarin to be about 56 liters — far higher than initially thought.”

From the New York Times:

… 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.

Moreover, those weapons are fired by large, conspicuous launchers. For rebels to have carried out the attack, they would have had to organize an operation with weapons they are not known to have and of considerable scale, sophistication and secrecy — moving the launchers undetected into position in areas under strong government influence or control, keeping them in place unmolested for a sustained attack that would have generated extensive light and noise, and then successfully withdrawing them — all without being detected in any way.

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14 Responses to U.N. Report Implicates Assad, Case Strengthens on Chemical Weapons

  1. secularhumanizinevoluter September 17, 2013 at 10:56 am #

    “FEW DOUBT who’s to blame in the chemical weapons attack on civilians in Syria, but the new U.N. report implicates President Bashar al Assad even further. ”

    You mean other then some very prolific posters here?

  2. mjsmith September 17, 2013 at 12:49 pm #

    I don’t see anything from the U.N. implicating Assad.

    It looks like these sources need to get their facts straight.

    • secularhumanizinevoluter September 18, 2013 at 5:50 am #

      See? The Love them some Assad reality deniers chime in right on Q! Does the word pathetic, clueless mean anything to you?

      • mjsmith September 18, 2013 at 8:49 am #

        You bring up a valid point, President Obama is pathetic and clueless when it comes to just about any aspect of his foreign policy. I am sure the “shot across the bow” as Obama described his dumb idea or as Kerry described the Obama strategy to attack Syria as “ridiculously small” really showed that they were serious. Obama blinked when he realized that his tough talk had no teeth. Putin saw the void in leadership and stepped in.

        The good benefit for Syria that this dumbass attack plan of Obama provided was greater attention to US involvement in Syria. This issue was greatly ignored and misrepresented. Now it is clear that the overwhelming majority of People here in the USA do not support Obama and policy on Syria. Now that the attention is being given to Syria, the lies just get exposed and faded away.

      • jinbaltimore September 20, 2013 at 6:38 pm #

        sorry, Sec…mj is right here:

  3. lynnette September 17, 2013 at 12:53 pm #

    Well if the U.N. report indicates this, then that’s more confirmation for the U.S. It will have to be dealt with, one way or another. Let’s hope the diplomacy works. I think there will have to be a Part 2 to all of this – not sure what that will or should look like. I think it’s good Obama went to Congress and slowed this down a little – for there to be a debate and to give the U.N. time to report. This will muster more support. Whatever is done, it should be thought out carefully and have an end plan that will not include Al Qeada. I hope we know what we are doing when all is said and done.

    P.S. I do appreciate Obama’s leadership to reflect and change as the situation demands rather than exhibit the all or nothing attitude. It goes against the grain of the “strong and wrong” – “weak and right” argument.

    • casualobserver September 17, 2013 at 1:51 pm #

      You are certainly entitled to perceive Obama exhibiting “leadership” relative to Syria these past few weeks and there is no more welcoming spot to express that adulation than these pages.

      And certainly, a majority of the country is in support of “diplomatic” efforts, myself included.

      However, we apparently part company over the definition of leadership. In my sphere of influence, leadership is a trait that effectively changes the circumstances to allow for preferred action (the so-called euphemism of “proaction”) as opposed to allowing circumstances to dictate action (otherwise known as “reaction”).

      Let’s rewind the tape and review where this latest “diplomatic” initiative incepted. The Administration’s spokesperson, John Kerry, was on the stump, exclusively making the case for virtual unilateral military action by the US Executive branch. A reporter phrases a question to effectively isolate an answer on under what circumstances would the Administration not launch military action. You may choose to disagree with conventional knowledge, as we are often encouraged here to do so, but most people reported Kerry’s answer as tantamount to a throw away line…….not something considered a likely circumstance to occur.

      The Russians pounced and Obama has now “reacted” to circumstances changed by others. Not exactly my definition of “leadership” per above.

      • lynnette September 17, 2013 at 7:52 pm #

        Hi C.O.,
        Well, I wouldn’t call it “adulation”. Too funny. I see your point but sometimes it is what it is. It would be nice if everything could be proactive but in an imperfect world … The only thing I don’t think was anticipated was the poll numbers and strong anti rush to war feelings. I do think Obama is a thinking individual – he’s not perfect but no president is. What do you think will be the end result of all this?

        • secularhumanizinevoluter September 18, 2013 at 5:53 am #

          “The Russians pounced and Obama has now “reacted” to circumstances changed by others. Not exactly my definition of “leadership” per above.”

          Seems once again the 180 degree Bizzaro world view displaies nicely here! It is clear President Obama is going to pound the snot out of Assad and his crowd so Putin scrambles to save Assad’s bacon is OBAMA reacting?

  4. mjsmith September 17, 2013 at 9:56 pm #

    Article from Wall Street Journal


    DAMASCUS, Syria—”While pro-regime media portrayed Syria’s agreement to give up its chemical weapons as a tactical victory for President Bashar al-Assad, the celebration hasn’t drowned out a sense of humiliation and foreboding among some regime stalwarts.

    “We are wounded and pained by it and consider it a loss not a victory,” wrote Nahed Hattar, a Jordanian who is normally a staunch Syrian regime defender, on Monday in the Lebanese daily Al-Akhbar.”

    “Especially worrying to some who see Mr. Assad as a guarantor of national sovereignty: The U.S.-Russian agreement says the regime’s chemical weapons must be destroyed by mid-2014—around the same time the president’s term ends.

    That, some backers fear, potentially links the disarmament timeline to a political solution to the civil war that demands the Syrian leader step aside.

    Mr. Assad believes he has a duty to run for re-election in 2014 and not let down his supporters, particularly members of his own Shiite-linked Alawite minority, who have tied their survival to his.

    “It’s not up to him, he has no choice,” said a government adviser.”

    “The Syrian children returning this week to schools in areas under regime control will start their days, as children here have done for decades, by saluting the Syrian flag and singing a national anthem that praises their country as the “den of Arabism,” the army as “guardians of the homeland” and Syrians as “proud souls [that] refuse to be humiliated.”

  5. mjsmith September 18, 2013 at 9:09 pm #

    Syrian President Bashar al Assad Dennis Kucinich Interview On Fox –

    • mjsmith September 19, 2013 at 9:05 am #

      Taylor, you should know that Assad never said “we have no chemical wepons” as your graphic implies.

      He challenges the interviewers to find one time where he denied having them. So if you say that he says that, go ahead and show one example.

      Do you want to look at what is going on in Syria or just lie about Assad?

  6. mjsmith September 19, 2013 at 9:03 am #

    New York Times Editors, Columnists Met With Obama During Syria Push

    NEW YORK — In his new book, The Message, editor Richard Wolffe describes how the Obama White House grew frustrated in 2011 with The New York Times after some negative editorials ran in the paper. President Barack Obama ended up calling Andy Rosenthal, the paper’s editorial page editor, and a couple weeks later Rosenthal and the Times editorial board went to the White House for an off-the-record meeting with the president.

  7. mjsmith September 19, 2013 at 1:45 pm #

    Lie 1. Chemical weapons were delivered with munitions not used by rebels:

    Lie 2. The sarin was fired from a regime-controlled area

    Lie 3. Chemical analysis suggests sarin likely came from controlled supply

    Lie 4. Cyrillic characters on the sides of the shells

    Lie 5. The UN Secretary General’s comments on the report: The Washington Post itself admits the tenuous nature of this final point, stating:

    “This is perhaps the most circumstantial case at all, but it’s difficult to ignore the apparent subtext in Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s news conference discussing the report…”

    In addition to the repeated lie that Assad denied having these weapons, are just an example of the ridiculous crap Obama and his Lie Squad keep shoveling.

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