Syrien

The Russian proposal to control and dismantle chemical weapons in Syria—How to test it without losing momentum

The Russians have been nimble at diplomacy throughout the two and a half years of the Syrian crisis, and today was no exception.  Picking up…


Europe’s cowardice, and the urgent need to build a coalition of NATO members for military action in Syria

Developing story Europe’s memory and that of its politicians has proved quite short when considering whether to support an American military response to Bashar al-Assad’s…


Next Steps: Obama, like a deer caught in the headlights of an oncoming car, must now take steps to deal with the Syrian crisis—ALL OF IT

The publication by the U.K. on August 29 of a summary of its legal justification for taking military action against Syria is a most welcome…


U.K. publishes legal justification for taking military action in Syria (full text and link)

The Office of the Prime Minister published a summary of the U.K. government’s legal justification of the use on military force against Syria in response…



A strong but narrow legal justification for military action in Syria: The key to building a strong coalition

The Necessity and Challenge of Crafting a Strong Legal Justification for Military Action in Syria President Barack Obama is learning, however belatedly, that other nations…


Fine intellectual distinctions involving the use of force are likely to fail in Syria

Developing story News reports suggest President Obama is tailoring military action against Syria to achieve the goal of deterring Bashar al-Assad from ever using chemical…


New strategy and accompanying military action needed in Syria; Justification under International Law

President Barack Obama’s strategy for dealing with Syria has demonstrably failed. That strategy consisted mainly in looking the other way, providing fitful and ineffectual covert…



REPRISE: Hommage à Homs (actualisé / updated)

BEIRUT: Intense fighting in the central Syrian city of Homs has left 60 to 70 percent of a besieged rebel-held district damaged, destroyed or uninhabitable,…


Obama’s “intellectual” approach and continuing indecision on no-fly zone and arms in Syria

For background, see The Trenchant Observer, “Obama’s “intellectual” decision-making style and the covert supply of arms to the Free Syrian Army,” June 17, 2013. On…


Syria: Russia and Iran complicit under International Law in the commission of war crimes and crimes against humanity

Sergei Lavrov argues that Russia has to supply modern weapons systems to Bashar al-Assad’s murderous regime in Syria in accordance with contracts that have already…


The new game in Syria and the only effective option now: the direct use of military force

To believe that simply getting the parties to the conference table would quickly lead to a settlement would be like believing that a giant rabbit…


REPRISE: Syrian military continues campaign to crush opposition in Saraqeb, Homs, al-Qusair and elsewhere—Obama’s Debacle in Syria — Update #16 (March 24, updated March 25, 2012)

REPRISE Originally published March 25, 2012 Latest news reports Oliver Holmes and Steve Gutterman (Beirut/Moscow), “Syrian forces on the offensive; Annan in Moscow,” Reuters, March…


The risks of playing the Russians’ diplomatic game: Putin, al-Assad, and their willing dupe–Barack Obama

Unless the military balance shifts, talk of diplomacy is little more than an excuse to ignore atrocities and red lines. The choice is not between…




Obama’s “red line” baby talk, and the Red Herring of whether it has been crossed

In the 21st century, statesmen don’t shout at the leaders of other nations and threaten, “if you cross this red line, my red line because…


60,000 killed in Syria—REPRISE II: The Olympic Games, and the Battle for Aleppo, Begin—Obama’s Debacle in Syria — Update #91 (January 2, 2013)

Barbarism in a Leaderless World The U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights now estimates there have been “59,648 individuals reported killed in Syria between 15…