The pressure and debate is on amongst the US, Britain and Russia regarding possible attacks on Syria. NATO chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen said there is clear evidence that Assad’s forces were behind the Aug. 21 chemical weapons attack that killed up to 1,300 Syrians.
“We have not yet made a decision but the international norm against the use of chemical weapons needs to be kept in place,” Obama said in an interview with PBS Newshour. “If we are saying in a clear and decisive but very limited way, we send a shot across the bow saying, ‘Stop doing this,’ this can have a positive impact on our national security over the long term,” he added.
While the United States has been debating how to respond to last week’s attack, British Prime Minister David Cameron spent Thursday trying to convince Parliament to vote in favor of a resolution supporting strikes against Syria. After a meeting of a divided U.N. Security Council Wednesday over the crisis, U.S. officials said the body won’t be able to reach consensus on Syrian action because the Russian delegation continues to block any resolution.
“This issue is dead. The Russians won’t budge,” one U.S. official told NBC News.
Russia and China have warned the United States not to bypass the U.N. and strike Syria. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said U.N. inspectors need more time to assess whether the forces of Syrian leader Bashar Assad used poison gas on civilians.