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Syria Makes Stunning Political Move to Avert War
This is a real instance of how the information age has changed the face of international diplomacy.
Speaking on Assad’s alternatives to avert war, John Kerry happened to comment sarcastically in Paris at a news conference last week, “Sure, he could turn over every bit of his weapons to the international community within the next week, without delay…but he isn’t about to.”
As Kerry was flying back from Paris to Washington he received a call in midair from Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov that he was taking Kerry’s comments seriously and was about to issue a public announcement.
Before Kerry could land in Washington, a Russian proposal was announced in Moscow to place Syria’s chemical weapons arsenal under the control of the international community, and Syria had accepted it with China and Iran lending support to the proposal.
Simultaneously, the proposal found favor with the countries skeptic about starting another international intervention and French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius declared that bringing the proposal to the Security Council would help the world to judge the real intentions of Russia and China in backing Syria.
Well, under such a situation, until this new turn in the game is followed through to its end, the question of a US military strike seems out of the question, and Kerry has found himself in a fix – as far as his wish to start a new war is concerned.
In the wake of the new developments, President Obama postponed the vote scheduled for Wednesday to decide on a military strike on Syria, and commented the alternative “could potentially be a significant breakthrough.
However, in an interview with NBC, Obama sounded skeptic, and said, “I think you have to take it with a grain of salt, initially.”
French Foreign Minister Fabius said that he was going to insist on a clause that mentions the Syrian government was responsible for the attacks, though it is difficult to assume that Russia and China would accept such language.
Be that as it may, until this new alternative and quibbles over language of the international instruments is finished – which can take months, or even years, the US and its allies are prevented from a military strike.
By that time, hopefully, the civil war may end in Syria.