AC360 411: Strike Syria over chemical weapons use?
September 4th, 2013
07:46 PM ET

AC360 411: Strike Syria over chemical weapons use?

Editor’s Note: Anderson will have the latest developments on the Obama administration’s push for U.S. military action in Syria tonight on AC360 at  8 p.m. ET.  

In a 10-7 vote, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee passed a resolution today authorizing limited U.S. military action in Syria, setting up a showdown in the full Senate next week. The resolution allows for 60 days of strikes against Syria, with the option of a 30 day extension.  

Meanwhile, President Obama continues to press his case for striking Syria.   “I didn't set a red line. The world set a red line,” Mister Obama said today in Stockholm on his way to St. Petersburg for the G20 Summit.  He attributes that to the Chemical Weapons Convention, an international treaty approved by the U.S. Congress and more than 100 other countries.  Here’s the AC360 411 on chemical weapons:


The preliminary total number of people killed in Syria’s chemical attack on August 21, according to the U.S. government assessment.


The number of children killed in the August 21 attack in Syria, also according to the U.S. government assessment.  

At least 350

How many people were killed in the August 21 chemical attack, according to British and French government reports.


Members of the U.N. team investigating last month’s chemical attack in Syria. They left Damascus on Saturday with biological samples. The findings are not expected for at least a week.


How many chemical attacks the Assad government is linked to since 2012, according to the latest British government assessment.


That’s how many months ago a U.N. official said there was strong suspicions Syrian opposition fighters used sarin gas in the country’s civil war. However, a spokesman for the Free Syrian Army said they don’t have unconventional weapons, and don’t want any.


The year the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) entered into force with 87 member states, including the United States. Members vow to  destroy existing stocks of chemical weapons within ten years and bans their future use.


The number of CWC member states today.


The number of CWC non-member states, including Syria.


The percentage of the world’s population living within territories where the CWC is the law of the land.


The percentage of the world’s declared stockpile of 71,196 metric tons of chemical agent have been verifiably destroyed, according to the CWC.


The year 40 nations banned the first use of chemical weapons when the Geneva Protocol was signed. Now more than 100 nations have signed it, but the U.S. didn’t do so until 1975.

Post by:
Filed under: 360° Radar • Syria
soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. Sandy

    Why do we need to help the rebels. They are fighting against their President.

    September 8, 2013 at 10:11 pm |
  2. Mark Barger

    You guys don't get it. Obama has finally figured out how to use the Republican Party. He doesn't want to attack Syria but feels obligated morally by the treaty. Internationally the world looks to us. Obama didn't have to ask congress for permission. He did because he didn't want to attack Syria. He knew as soon as he expressed his desire to attack Syria the Republicans, true to form would block it. This way he appears to be upholding the Constitution by asking Congress, appears to be supporting the treaty by asking for permission, and will be blocked so therefore will not have to attack Syria. It's a three way win. Politically it makes him look weak, but so what, he's not running again. I think he should use Reverse psychology more often on these Republicans. He'd get a little more done. Too bad it took him 5 years to figure that out, but then who knew Republicans would be that obstinate.

    September 4, 2013 at 9:40 pm |
  3. Larry Babcock

    Great job Anderson on the Syria situation. I believe your guests this evening were exceptional - Newt Gingrich, David ++ because of the merits of their arguments. Our leaders are marching in the wrong direction. One to two years ago was the time to get involved, if we were going to do so. Now, we should only give small arms etc. (secretly) to any 'good guys' in the opposition. We should also give humanitarian aid. Finally, we must have more international support (U.N. plus many others) before we engage militarily.

    September 4, 2013 at 8:56 pm |
  4. Michael Towns

    I've been recently watching the episode tonight & have reached an answer to the most reasonable conclusion for a success in Syria. First, allow the US to do a brief destructive attack on the Assad regiime, meanwhile arm the Syrian rebels with the necessary weapons to be our "foot soldiers" to finish the destruction of the current Syrian government!.

    September 4, 2013 at 8:47 pm |
  5. Michael Hana

    Failure of INtelligence or failure of that administration to prevent the use of the chemical weapon? I wonder why the administration says that they could obtain unquestionable information from telephone and e-mail intercepts that the government in Syria used Chemical weapons. From the neature of their contents wasn't this inforamtion obtained before the use of the chemical weapons? then why didn't we intervene before the attack or tried to prevent it? not that I am for an intervention. Is it another failure of our intelligence services or is it a failure of the administration to act on the information that obrained from intelligence?

    September 4, 2013 at 8:35 pm |

Post a comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.