Monday Morning Politics: Syria Next Steps

Monday, September 09, 2013

Hari Sreenivasan, host of the new program PBS NewsHour Weekend, which launched this past weekend, talks about the impending vote on intervention in Syria, Congress's first week back from recess, and his new show.


Hari Sreenivasan

Comments [24]

Katherine Boyd from Brooklyn, NY

Edward from Washington Heights posted
"Press TV is the propaganda arm of the Islamic Republic of Iran. You think quoting Pravda would be credible source too?"

Thank you for pointing out that Press TV is an "arm of the Islamic Republic of Iran." I did not know and should have done more research myself before posting this link. In my defense, however, I will say that this does not mean that our own government is not capable of manufacturing evidence--propaganda--for going to war. We saw a highly effective use of propaganda by the Bush administration for going to war against Iraq.

While it defies common sense, how can we know for sure that the Obama administration isn't falsifying information and/or omitting evidence to persuade Congress and Americans to support what will quickly evolve into a war in Syria? Should we believe John Kerry's hysterical comparison of Assad to Hitler? The Guardian reports this morning that it was most likely Assad's military commanders who were responsible for the chemical weapons attack and used them without Assad's knowledge. What other evidence will be revealed that the US will pay no attention to? How do we know that there isn't a nefarious agenda for regime change in Syria?

Sep. 09 2013 12:22 PM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

Katherine Boyd from Brooklyn, NY posted:

> I wish every one would read Finian Cunningham's (Press TV Ireland) piece, "US GAMBLES ON SYRIA WITH EMPTY HAND."

Press TV is the propaganda arm of the Islamic Republic of Iran. You think quoting Pravda would be credible source too?

Sep. 09 2013 11:19 AM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

100,000+ have died in the fighting in Syria.

Syria is a problem best solved by the United Nations.

The UN should send in inspectors, and Peace Keepers. Any country that blocks sending in help to end the killing in Syria is part of the problem. I'm talking about YOU KGB Putin Russia.

Sep. 09 2013 11:12 AM

White phosphorus used in Iraq by the military burned children from the inside out until their eyes and mouth were cooked out of their heads.

Sep. 09 2013 11:09 AM
JF from reality

First Obama Needs to send a message to Monsanto for creating agent orange and jail anyone that was involved in US army atrocities and like decisions. Us killed millions in the middle east recently. Children in vietnam are still being born with flippers and no brains in vietnam because of monsanto's chemical weapons.

Sep. 09 2013 11:07 AM
Katherine Boyd from Brooklyn, NY

I am against bombing Syria. I am sick of feeling manipulated by all the "moral" arguments for doing so. It is horrifying, but I remain unconvinced that US military action will do anything to lessen the suffering of innocent Syrians or to quell the violence of the last 2 1/2 years there. What about devastation to the lives and families of our servicemen and women and their families? Furthermore, I suspect that our government could be using this as an excuse to promote an agenda for regime change in Syria.

I wish every one would read Finian Cunningham's (Press TV Ireland) piece, "US GAMBLES ON SYRIA WITH EMPTY HAND."

There is credible evidence in this piece, as well as others, if only Americans were interested enough to do a little research, to support the many reasons for NOT going into Syria.

Sep. 09 2013 11:05 AM
Christine from Westchester

To Becky and others: I couldn't agree more. So we'll bomb them and kill them to tell them to stop killing people? And oh by the way, the resistence forces opposing the current government, they're a bunch of Boy Scouts?

Why are chemical weapons (which have not been proved as used by the govt. Is it not possible that the rebels did this to elicit a response?) are a worse way of killing innocent people than other things like landmines and other weapons. When did we become the chemical weapons police?

Sep. 09 2013 11:02 AM
D. Hing from LES, Manhattan

Where was the red line during the Khmer Rouge's genocide in Cambodia? Where was the red line when the USA used chemical weapons in Vietnam, Fallujah, Cambodia, etc

Sep. 09 2013 11:02 AM

If they wanted to help the people of syria they would help the 20,000 refugees and help all the people escape the country and feed and house them , but they need to "spend" the money on the military industrial complex of war profiteers. LOCKHEED MARTIN, RAYTHEON, BOEING, HALLIBURTON

Sep. 09 2013 11:00 AM
Stephen from Prospect Heights

Napalm and Agent Orange are more recent examples. Not sure if US can take the high ground.

Sep. 09 2013 10:59 AM
The Truth from Becky

Ok so am I understanding caller that the US should bomb Syria, kill a few hundred innocent people to teach them not to kill their people with chemical weapons? Just trying to clarify.

Sep. 09 2013 10:54 AM
Sarah from UES

I'm sick of the majority the "no's" in the House and Senate. The majority will say "yes" when the time is right because of what? Israel. Israel wants us to bomb Syria and nobody will go against Israeli policy.

Sep. 09 2013 10:54 AM

Too much coverage is about the horrors. I'm horrified, I get it. The real question is what do we hope to achieve, and the news media are avoiding this topic.
I am against any military intervention no matter how many videos and speeches the administration serves up. If we help the rebels it's just a matter of time before we see them stoning twelve year olds for not covering their faces. Enough.

Sep. 09 2013 10:54 AM
Amy from Manhattan

I've been wondering if it would be possible to destroy the routes from the weapons depots (chemical & conventional) & the sites the weapons would be launched from. Do we have enough info on their locations? Could this be done accurately enough from offshore? Could it be done in a way & at a time that would minimize the risk of killing people?

(Yes, I pasted this in from the previous segment. This might be a better one for getting an answer.)

Sep. 09 2013 10:52 AM
David from Fredericksburg, VA

I can't imagine ANYTHING that Obama can say that would convince me that this would be OK.

We're talking about blowing people up while accomplishing nothing - this is completely immoral. Before we can even get to the question of is this in our vital national interest, we have to decide if we are morally justified to take this action.

Sep. 09 2013 10:51 AM
MArk from Manhattan

I guess Assad still doesn't know he is dealing with the same crowd that dug Saddam out of a gopher hole and later hand him hung ....

Is he like Bloomberg ? tone death?

Sep. 09 2013 10:50 AM

Thomas Friedman hit it just right - "arm and shame." Arm the legitimate Syrian rebels and shame Assam by accusing him of war crimes at the international court. We shouldn't kill more civilians just to make a point.

Sep. 09 2013 10:49 AM
Mary from Fort Greene

I am liberal, left, progressive, feminist, and I am FOR U.S. military intervention in Syria a la Bosnia as a humanitarian action and as vital support for the moderate forces among the opposition.

Sep. 09 2013 10:48 AM
David Mitchell from Spring Valley, NY

I was taken back by the cavalier and inaccurate way you started your show in terms of introducing the upcoming segment on Syria. The United States is about to possibly undertake a very serious military action against Syria with unpredictable consequences, which arguably will benefit a side in the civil (and regional) war that has elements guilty of terrible atrocities and aims itself, and which is an action many international law experts argue is a very serious violation of international law itself (a “crime against the peace” in terms of codified Nuremberg trial precedents) in the absence of an imminent threat to America, Security Council authorization or authorization in the General Assembly of the United Nations under a “uniting for peace” authorization --- and which threatens to undermine the very international structure of international law that the United States was so prominent in promoting after World War II in an attempt to prevent wars, protect the sovereignty of all nations and promote stability in world affairs.

Yet, you introduced your segment with the inaccurate and cavalier characterization of Assad’s interview with Charlie Rose saying the Assad said “What chemical weapons?” etc. That is not worthy of the seriousness of this subject that is under debate by this nation. Even as to the issue of proof of responsibility of the attack itself, it appears it is not a “slam dunk”. While it appears that the Assad government is responsible, recent Associated Press reports, etc. point out that the case is circumstantial only and many doubts exist; and that some Congressional Representatives privy to classified reports even say that they do not fully support public statements made by the White House. Responsible investigative journalism should treat and explore all these issues much more seriously that your introduction indicates you will. Thank you for listening.

Sep. 09 2013 10:45 AM
Anthony from East Village

There is an answer toward solutions. The tragety again is that one major reason we worked so hard and voted this president in has been flipped on us.
I can't believe that while at the Summit in Moscow Obama did not plead for extra time before or after to sit with Putin, for as long as it takes. The work of peace making isn't speaking with friends, it's talking to people you don't like and disagree with. We two powers are directly or indirectly responsible for suppling all factions in Syria. (yes Iran, france and UK, etc, but we're key) WE have to get it together. We are not. Military responses and mind sets are tragically taking the day leading us again, with partial and or misleading info.
Military first, serious dialgueing put off, is weakness, and in this case again, criminal. This is going against the will of vast majority of people, despite not pushing for and waiting for facts on ground to clariy... a solid UN backed investigation.... Thank you Brian and WNyC

Sep. 09 2013 10:42 AM
Oscar from NY

The reason mr Obama is stalling is because Israel and other countries thought and spoke too fast about intervention over at Syria and that's why even the U.K backed out, the consequences of invading Syria poses a real threat to Israel and Israel will be targeted... so now it's thinking time..

Sep. 09 2013 10:40 AM
Yourgo from Astoria

With all the different interests involved in Syria is it possible that this invasion lead to World War 3?

Sep. 09 2013 10:02 AM
Ed from Larchmont

To bad consequences.

Sep. 09 2013 08:44 AM
Ed from Larchmont

I think he won't get Congressional approval, not of both houses, but that he will act anyway, on his own authority.

Sep. 09 2013 08:44 AM

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