07 September 2013

Obama's One-sided Condemnation of Using Chemical Weapons

"Of course, even as we focused on our shared prosperity — and although the primary task of the G-20 is to focus on our joint efforts to boost the global economy — we did also discuss a grave threat to our shared security: And that’s the Syrian regime’s use of chemical weapons. And what I’ve been emphasizing and will continue to stress is that the Assad regime’s brazen use of chemical weapons isn’t just a Syrian tragedy, it’s a threat to global peace and security.

Syria’s escalating use of chemical weapons threatens its neighbors, Turkey, Jordan, Lebanon, Iraq, Israel. It threatens to further destabilize the Middle East. It increases the risk that these weapons will fall into the hands of terrorist groups. But more broadly, it threatens to unravel the international norm against chemical weapons embraced by 189 nations,, and those nations represent 98 percent of the world’s people.

Failing to respond to this breach of this international norm would send a signal to rogue nations, authoritarian regimes and terrorist organizations, that they can develop and use weapons of mass destruction and not pay a consequence. And that’s not the world that we want to live in. This is why nations around the world have condemned Syria for this attack, and called for action. I’ve been encouraged by discussions with my fellow leaders this week. There is a growing recognition that the world cannot stand idly by. Here in St. Petersburg leaders from Europe, Asia and the Middle East have come together to say that the international norm of the use against chemical weapons must be upheld, and that the Assad regime used these weapons on its own people, and that, as a consequence, there needs to be a strong response."
This is a sanctimonious and hypocritical statement on the Syrian use of chemical weapons taken from Obama's statement at the post-G20 Summit news conference yesterday. Now, I am not defending the Syrian use of chemical weapons. Far from it. The Asad regime is despicable. And much of the opposition at best is barely less so. The problem is that Obama's condemnation ought to start at home. He ought to be pursuing the officials, military and civilian, responsible for the use of chemical weapons by American forces in Iraq. To the best of my knowledge the mainstream American media have not as much as mentioned this matter. You can find reports here and here and here.

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