Today could be a major game-changer for attacks, or lack thereof, against Syria. Monday, Russia, which opposes strikes on Syria, proposed that Syria put its weapons under international control. And Tuesday, Syria agreed to the idea. China and Iran have voiced their support, and France is drafting a U.N. Security Council resolution to put the plan into effect. In light of these developments, The U.S. Senate has postponed a vote on a resolution authorizing military force against Syria and a bipartisan group of eight senators is writing a new resolution. According to The New York Times,
The alternative resolution is far from complete, but a Senate aide familiar with the talks said the negotiations are being conducted in consultation with the White House. It would require the United Nations Security Council to pass a resolution condemning the use of chemical weapons by the forces of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and would set a deadline for establishing United Nations control of the arsenal. If that deadline is not met, the resolution would authorize the use of military force.
Obama has said that Syria’s giving up its chemical weapons “could potentially be a significant breakthrough.” We will have to see what The President says tonight, when he addresses the nation on Syria.
For those of you torn over what should be done about Syria, here are a few things to check out.
1. Chris Hayes’ nuanced case against going to war with Syria. (See link for transcript)
2. A debate hosted by DemocracyNow! between Rafif Jouejati of the Syrian Local Coordination Committees, a network of activists throughout Syria, and Rania Masri, Lebanese-based human rights activist and professor at the University of Balamand in Lebanon. (See link for transcript)
3. The voices of Syrian children. (See video for transcript.)
4. Professor Juan Cole on How Putin Saved Obama, Congress and the European Union from Further Embarrassing themselves on Syria
5. Ramah Kudaimi on the Do’s and don’ts for progressives discussing Syria.
6. Helena Cobban on The Russia-Syria deal: What it means and what now?