- Posted September 9, 2013 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Are chemical weapons a ‘red line’?
Bashar al Assad to US 'Expect Everything'
Embattled Syrian President Bashar al Assad sat down for an interview with PBS's own Charlie Rose to be aired later this evening. From the excerpts released so far, it would seem that al Assad is in essence telling President Barack Obama, the US Congress and the American people if attacked or punished consequences would ensue. In a nutshell, al Asssad said that if America shoots first, the Syrians and their allies would be getting in the last shot.
What is certain, in what we have heard thus far of the interview, al Assad is definitely not going to lay down like "The Mouse that Roared". Instead al Assad is refusing to bow down or kowtow the line just because the American President barks.
The threat is clear that if the US decides to interfere with the Syrian civil war, not only would the Syrian regime react and strike back, but it's allies such as Hezbollah in Lebanon would target Americans and Israel. Iran will possibly also strike back with a launch aimed at American ships in the Persian Gulf or Israel. Already there is the threat to the US embassy in Iraq being under the gun. Russia has sent ships to shadow US naval forces in the Mediterranean.
In his defense, al Assad noted that there is no definitive proof that it was his government which launched a chemical attack on Syrians which resulted in over 1,000 killed, including over 400 children. The Syrian President noted that if the US had that proof it would have already shown it.
It does appear that Obama, if he does have proof, is holding it close to his vest. Neither the President nor his Administration have provided more than circumstantial evidence. Though it is clear that chemicals were released, what is not clear is who is responsible.
In the interview, al Assad stressed that those who are fighting his country include loyalists to Al Qaeda. Since September 18, 2001, there has been congressional authorization to seek out and kill Al Qaeda cells and factions wherever those groups may be found. Yet, al Assad noted that the rebels consisted of the very sworn enemies of the US which now apparently the American intervention would give aid and comfort.
It is understandable that al Assad would want to present his case to the American people and Congress as he faces the possibility of an attack from the US of A to allegedly punish his regime for use of chemical weapons. His defense at times, in the excerpts, comes across as threatening and drawing his own red line where the US is concerned. It is natural, the dictator would want to push back against the allegations being made by the American Administration against him.
From the Cornfield, the impression I get is that al Assad is not afraid of the big, bad wolf who is blustering and yelling, "I'll huff and I'll puff and I'll blow your house down." For the brutal al Assad, he is singing "Hit me with your best shot. Fire away."
While I have no sympathy for al Assad, I am still convinced that interference in an internal, domestic dispute within a sovereign nation is not the way for our country to go.
A new development that is causing a stir today is a proposal from Russia, from an off-script comment by Secretary of State John Kerry, that an American attack may be averted if Syria places its chemical stockpiles, which it has never admitted to having, under United Nations control.The Syrian regime has said it would consider such a proposal.
Might this be a way out for both Obama and the Congress?