Video: UN inspectors leave Syria

posted at 10:01 am on August 31, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

Late yesterday, the UN announced that it would accelerate the departure schedule for its inspection team on the ground in Damascus by three hours, from 7 am Saturday morning to 4 am. Most took this as a signal that American strikes on the Syrian army would shortly follow, and NBC News reports that US assets have already been positioned for military action. Even the missiles have their targets loaded in their guidance systems. All that’s needed now is the order:

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According to CBS News, we could be waiting a while. Russia now wants the Obama administration to wait for next week’s G-20 meeting to discuss further what UN inspectors found:

The last of the U.N. weapons inspection team pulled out of Syria before dawn Saturday after four days of field work visiting the suburbs of Damascus hit by what appears to have been chemical strikes on Aug. 21, CBS News correspondent Elizabeth Palmer reported on “CBS This Morning: Saturday.

The samples they gathered from victims of the attack, as well as water, soil and shrapnel, will now be sent to European laboratories for analysis. The results, and the inspectors’ final report, could take as long as two weeks.

But international politics are moving faster than that. On Saturday, Syria’s international ally, Russia, weighed in. President Vladimir Putin asked the U.S. to refrain from carrying out any strikes on Syria and suggested that next week’s G20 meeting would be a good venue for international discussion on what to do.

Putin said that the idea that the Syrian government would use chemical weapons when it was already winning the war was utter nonsense.

 

It’s been more than 12 hours since the UN inspectors have left, but still a few hours before the sun sets. One would expect the strike to come in darkness, so the clock will really start ticking at sunset, which comes at 7:01 local time, or noon ET. With Congress coming back in just a few days, the longer Obama waits, the fewer excuses he has to reject Congressional engagement and authorization before striking. If the sun sets in Washington without a strike, it may be quite a while before anything significant happens in the Mediterranean.

What happens after the strike? CBS News interviews Michael O’Hanlon from the Brookings Institute, who believes that Assad will simply absorb the blow and learn his lesson about using chemical weapons. It’s not going to weaken him, however, and while O’Hanlon has a rather sunny view of the results of a one-off attack on the trajectory of the Middle East, he does allow that this might also touch off a regional war. That’s why, O’Hanlon insists, the US and the West need to engage more deeply in the Syrian civil war:


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Schadenfreude on August 31, 2013 at 1:52 PM

Seeking Congressional approval?

Apparently Obama fears the backlash more than the mockery. Congress will never approve of his stupid pinprick strikes, and that will give him cover for not enforcing the “red line” stupidity. And he will blame it all on them. Brilliant!

novaculus on August 31, 2013 at 1:59 PM

“we will bomb, but no boots on the ground”

Typical liberal dope who is trying to act tough, break the law – while messaging his liberal base.

Notice how few “liberal friends” are commenting – at all – on FB, Twitter or other social network’s about the evils of war, America and our military…

“right makes might…:

I “wasn’t elected to make easy decisions”

“democracy is stronger when the nation takes actions”… ah so we are weaker when you go it alone?

Get this AA hire the f- out of office now.

Now.

Odie1941 on August 31, 2013 at 2:01 PM

Ok so Zero has decided that action needs to be taken, but he will get congressional approval first:

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_OBAMA_SYRIA?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2013-08-31-13-57-17

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama says he has decided that the United States should take military action against Syria in response to a deadly chemical weapons attack.

But he says he will seek congressional authorization for the use of force.

He says congressional leadership plans to hold a debate and a vote as soon as Congress comes back in September.

So, no attack until Tuesday?

dogsoldier on August 31, 2013 at 2:08 PM

Who has a giant facepalm post?

It’s needed ASAP after that statement.

Doood, even I was cringing for The Incredible Shrinking Barack Obama™?

Resist We Much on August 31, 2013 at 2:10 PM

novaculus on August 31, 2013 at 1:59 PM

Boehner might go along.

dogsoldier on August 31, 2013 at 2:11 PM

Umm, sooo retarded.
.
.

:-)

coldwarrior on August 31, 2013 at 1:45 PM

Yep, LOL

bluefox on August 31, 2013 at 2:11 PM

squishy gop will cave methinks…

i can hear him and the dems blame the gop….

cmsinaz on August 31, 2013 at 2:12 PM

Doood, even I was cringing for The Incredible Shrinking Barack Obama™?

Resist We Much on August 31, 2013 at 2:10 PM

It is a really bad attempt at trying to make it clear that he has the decision making authority and get permission. If they had never put out all those articles about Zero “making the decision” he would not look more clownish now than he did before.

dogsoldier on August 31, 2013 at 2:13 PM

Obama just “blinked.”

His bluff was called…he is holding a pair of deuces…and the other guys around the table are holding Jacks or better…maybe a royal flush or a full house, even.

So…time to melt the phones…

This travesty must be voted down..firmly…

coldwarrior on August 31, 2013 at 2:13 PM

This travesty must be voted down..firmly…

coldwarrior on August 31, 2013 at 2:13 PM

yepper

boehner may cave though

cmsinaz on August 31, 2013 at 2:14 PM

Syrian television is declaring victory after Obama’s speech & calling him a coward.

Resist We Much on August 31, 2013 at 2:16 PM

His bluff was called…he is holding a pair of deuces…

Not sure if I was talking poker on that one…but, he is holding a pair of deuces.

Somebody hand him a Clorox wipe.

coldwarrior on August 31, 2013 at 2:16 PM

Resist We Much on August 31, 2013 at 2:16 PM

Getting better reaction from BBC World Service right now than the vapid talking heads of the vaunted American media.

coldwarrior on August 31, 2013 at 2:18 PM

Well, that is going to make things more difficult…that Office of Mockery Prevention is going to have to be elevated to a full cabinet Department….stoopid sequestration…may have to rob Peter to pay Paul on that one…look for cuts deep cuts to DoD to cover the new Department of Mockery Affairs.

coldwarrior on August 31, 2013 at 2:21 PM

Syrian television is declaring victory after Obama’s speech & calling him a coward.

Resist We Much on August 31, 2013 at 2:16 PM

Counting chickens.

dogsoldier on August 31, 2013 at 2:28 PM

Counting chickens.

dogsoldier on August 31, 2013 at 2:28 PM

Of course, but it is a major PR victory for Assad…and Putin and Iran…for the time being.

Resist We Much on August 31, 2013 at 2:33 PM

So…time to melt the phones…

This travesty must be voted down..firmly…

coldwarrior on August 31, 2013 at 2:13 PM

Well, I’m a cynic in addition to being those other decriptives:-)

Now why would I think that he would agree to a vote in Congress unless he has been assured of it being in his favor?

You don’t need a fact this time, LOL Just an educated guess will be fine.

Or do you think he’s looking for a way out?

bluefox on August 31, 2013 at 2:37 PM

Now why would I think that he would agree to a vote in Congress unless he has been assured of it being in his favor?

You don’t need a fact this time, LOL Just an educated guess will be fine.

Or do you think he’s looking for a way out?

bluefox on August 31, 2013 at 2:37 PM

An overwhelming majority of Americans do not want to attack Syria (80%+). Congress voting down authorisation would give Obama an out from the corner into which he has painted himself. On the other hand, Congressional authorisation will make it a ‘team effort’ for the media to sell…unlike it did with Bush’s two AUMF. Iraq and Afghanistan were Bush’s wars. Congressional approval will allow the media and the administration to sell it as anything but ‘Obama’s War.’

Resist We Much on August 31, 2013 at 2:45 PM

novaculus on August 31, 2013 at 1:59 PM

Boehner might go along.

dogsoldier on August 31, 2013 at 2:11 PM

He might. But can he bring a majority with him?

novaculus on August 31, 2013 at 2:51 PM

Resist We Much on August 31, 2013 at 2:10 PM

Resist We Much on August 31, 2013 at 2:33 PM

Valerie knew all along the dangers of letting him go off the script. That is why she demands he use the teleprompter all the time. He may have gotten a hard spankin’ after that “red line” stupidity. See where it has gotten him?

novaculus on August 31, 2013 at 2:54 PM

Resist We Much on August 31, 2013 at 2:45 PM

It could be either way then. The fact that he was so determined to strike Syria and many talking heads were saying he didn’t need Congress, etc., it’s hard to tell. Of course Boehner & Reid have given him everything he’s proposed since 2010. And what they haven’t he’s issued E.O.’s.

I know the American people are against this, but that hasn’t stopped him nor Boehner/Reid.

All preparations have been made, ships etc. I don’t know, but I’d say he’s going ahead with the strike on Syria.

bluefox on August 31, 2013 at 3:00 PM

Syrian television is declaring victory after Obama’s speech & calling him a coward.

Resist We Much on August 31, 2013 at 2:16 PM

…I want to see a picture of Assad holding the little boy…flipping JugEars the finger !

KOOLAID2 on August 31, 2013 at 5:33 PM

What if all the Republicans just vote “present” on the use of force motion?

BigAlSouth on August 31, 2013 at 9:05 PM

Morrissey loves them links to the lame stream media.

No thanks.

Oh, and I wish the UN would leave the US as well.

But it likes NY.

Just like our politicians love DC too much.

I’m a ramblin’ man today.

Sherman1864 on September 2, 2013 at 5:29 AM

Red Line? The typical LIVeral thinks that is some new ‘energy drink’.

And King Putt thinks pickling off Tomahawk missiles are part of an economic investment plan. He’s going to have to expend over $5B to cripple Syrian air assets that are worth a fraction of that. But it is the new ‘Smart Diplomacy’ and the NYT and WaPo will applaud every launch.

Cindy Sheehan – Please pick up the courtesy phone.

Missilengr on September 3, 2013 at 1:20 PM

Pity the UN inspectors. When that first bullet snaps past your head, politics and all that shiite, go out the window.

Missilengr on September 3, 2013 at 1:42 PM

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