Hoping for a 'soft landing' in Syria
Kofi Annan (L) during a meeting with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad at the presidential palace in Damascus on May 29, 2012.
August 2nd, 2012
11:08 PM ET

Hoping for a 'soft landing' in Syria

By Elise Labott

U.S. officials said they weren't surprised Thursday when Kofi Annan stepped down as U.N. envoy to Syria.

Really?

It's a pity that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton spent months of diplomatic effort, traveling from capital to capital pushing the "Annan plan" as a viable political transition strategy, all the while the administration knew it had little chance of succeeding.

So with Annan's resignation and three failed attempts at a Security Council resolution on Syria, is diplomacy dead?

At the State Department, the answer is "no."

At Thursday's press briefing, Acting Deputy Spokesman Patrick Ventrell said while the United States would have preferred to work through the U.N. Security Council, Washington was going along with it's four-pronged strategy of a) strengthening sanctions to squeeze the regime of President Bashar al-Assad; b) helping the opposition with non-lethal aid to organize and work toward a political transition; c) providing humanitarian assistance; and, d) ensuring accountability and justice for members of the al-Assad regime with blood on their hands.

Ventrell was promptly reminded by reporters that there is precious little in this U.S. strategy the administration can point to that will actually end the violence because a) sanctions take a long time to work; b) the non-lethal U.S. assistance to date of $25 million is a paltry sum compared to both the U.S. foreign affairs budget and the need on the ground; and, c) humanitarian aid is a Band-Aid that might treat the symptoms, but not the underlying cause of the crisis.

The Obama administration sees the glass half full. The opposition continues to gain strength and confidence, Ventrell pointed out, while the al-Assad regime continues to run out of money and is losing control.

"Our analysis is that the regime's capabilities are being weakened, that the Syrian army's soldiers are becoming demoralized, and that the opposition is gaining ground," Ventrell said. "So in effect, our strategy is having an impact."

Sources: Obama authorized covert support for Syrian rebels

The administration is coming under increasing pressure to arm the opposition. Yet officials from Secretary Clinton on down say the United States doesn't want to "further militarize the conflict."

"We are going to get there," one official said about al-Assad's ouster. "We want to get there in a way that's a softer landing. We don't want the institutions to just melt away."

In some ways, it explains the U.S. rationale for not wanting to further "militarize" the conflict in Syria.

But the truth is, the U.S. does want to further militarize the conflict. It just doesn't want to be the one to do it.

Washington is perfectly content to let its allies such as Qatar and Saudi Arabia arm the rebels. The U.S. approach, in essence, is to let civil war play out, hope the rebels win and plan for the day al-Assad is gone.

Then, in a page from the "Wizard of Oz," the administration can join the Syrian rebels, along with al-Assad's defeated army, in a rendition of "Ding Dong the Witch is Dead."

Of course, the problem with this approach is that Washington will not be in the chorus. The less involvement the United States has in helping the opposition overtake the regime, the less influence Washington will have if and when al-Assad does fall.

That doesn't exactly bode well for the "soft landing" the U.S. is hoping for.

Syria full coverage

soundoff (124 Responses)
  1. Omero

    Sabi ni East Timor President Jose Ramos Horta (in one of the forums in AdDU), the Filipinos are the most brilnialt, enterprising and resourceful individuals. Kahit nga daw sa building ng United Nations, may mga Filipino secretaries na may sideline na RTW at kung anu-ano.

    October 10, 2012 at 11:37 pm | Reply
  2. Tami Rife

    How long are we going to contune to close our eyes while Assad's regime murders children... This is a massacre! So with Annan's resignation and three failed attempts at a Security Council resolution on Syria, is diplomacy dead?

    At the State Department, the answer is "no."
    Are they kidding it will never work and agreed resolution never.

    August 6, 2012 at 3:22 pm | Reply
  3. Joe Clark

    Diplomacy was never alive to begin with. Both parties have to be engaged in the discussion. Assad never was interested in talking about peace and the rising death toll is proof positive of it.

    August 5, 2012 at 4:22 pm | Reply
    • Guess who once funded ibn Laden & Saddam

      "Joe Clark" – one of the most innefective, useless prime ministers of Canada.

      August 5, 2012 at 4:42 pm | Reply
    • TrueGrissel

      What if we had an armed revolt here in the US, what would Obama do? The exact same thing, he'd call in the military to crush it. The only difference is we're a politically correct society.

      August 5, 2012 at 6:28 pm | Reply
      • Marco Perches

        Grissel you have a short memory. You are forgetting that this didn't start out as an armed revolt, but a non violent protest. Al Assad's response was to gun the protestors down. That's when the rebellion became armed. Furthermore the difference between the US and Syria is that Syria is a dictatorship.

        August 5, 2012 at 10:37 pm |
      • Guess who once funded ibn Laden & Saddam

        Considering that the United States has supported, planted and sponsered dictators for close to a century, who the hell are we to crap on al-Assad? Nothing less than self-righteous sanctimony being posted by the likes of yourself.

        August 5, 2012 at 11:02 pm |
  4. ron

    Kofi Annan is and has always been a joke. Saddam. H. jerked him around and laughed at the UN Santions for 12 years.The only thing Assad understands is military might. He should be looking at what happened to Qadaffi in Libya.

    August 5, 2012 at 11:37 am | Reply
  5. MedinaDad

    When will the left realize that any negotiations are only as good as the word of those you are dealing with? It is foolish to negotiate with the dictators of the world as their word means nothing and they only represent their country until an overthrow.

    August 5, 2012 at 8:55 am | Reply
    • William F. Phuckley

      Assad aside, you do realize that many of these dictators owed their postion(s) to Washington.

      August 5, 2012 at 10:09 am | Reply
      • Ron

        Neither Bashar Al Assad nor his father owed their positions to the US. Bashar inherited his dictatorship from his father, Hafez Al Assad, who was a protégé of the Soviet Union.

        August 6, 2012 at 10:08 am |
  6. Craig

    The ultimate problem remains ever the same. Should the US actively intervene, many would cry foul. Many would see yet another "crusade" with the infidels invading to cleanse the land...yet again. In much of the Middle East that's the way it would play, simply because it's an easy answer the US is a great villain.

    The opposite is do nothing...or very little, and be vilified for not helping those in need.

    The point is that one of those two positions is going to happen regardless. The difference, ultimately, is two things. First, in simple terms (which aren't a very good measure but valid nonetheless) is that intervention would cost a bunch of money, and, if it matters, there's no return on that investment. Some people might survive that otherwise wouldn't, but we'd never know how many or which ones, and the rest wouldn't care anyway. The big, bad US would remain the Big Bad US. Second, with active intervention, there's the problem of what to do next. Yes, the US military could easily win a fight, although the presence of chemical and bio weapons does make it a bit more difficult. However, once the fight is over, the US can't just leave. It's Iraq all over again, except messier.

    So...no way to win, and many ways to lose. Not good options, but certainly a basis for every armchair expert to complain.

    August 5, 2012 at 1:06 am | Reply
  7. sam

    Hi. My name is sam. I'm looking for a good time. Must love war and have a small tool.

    August 4, 2012 at 11:10 pm | Reply
  8. JiminNM

    The West wants to eliminate every sovereign nation, like Syria, Iraq, Libya, North Korea, Etc. It's about the private banks and their fiat dollar. Research the speeches of U.S. Representative Louis McFadden and really study the Civil War, including the Crittenden Compromise of 1860. The Civil War was about destroying America and returning the land to the English Crown financiers in the City of London. It's an exquisitely orchestrated charade; everything. Get informed.

    August 4, 2012 at 9:03 pm | Reply
    • Leif

      Don't forget to wear your tin foil hat...they might hear you.

      August 5, 2012 at 3:58 am | Reply
      • William F. Phuckley

        Y'know, you could take him up on his offer, but I suppose the easy way out for hubristic rubes such as yourself is to stay ignorant.

        August 5, 2012 at 9:51 am |
  9. onestarman

    A Better Question might be "Is Diplomacy Dead?" When was the Last Time the U.N. or Bi-Lateral diplomacy had an Impact on ANY Major Conflict?

    August 4, 2012 at 3:16 pm | Reply
  10. Bill in CSprings

    Diplomacy dead? How can you even suggest such a thing?

    Sure the country is in the grips of an all-out civil war; the dictator who runs the place is threatening to use chemical weapons on the rebels; un-told thousands (if not tens of thousands) have been killed; Every diplomatic mission has been a dismal failure, as well as every resolution that goes through the security counsel gets vetoed by China and Russia. But hey – the UN general assembly can pass yet another resolution voicing their disappointment. Yeah that's always an effective tactic.

    August 4, 2012 at 11:01 am | Reply
    • Glenn

      It makes you wonder what their thinking when they present it in a form of question.

      August 4, 2012 at 9:13 pm | Reply
  11. yuri pelham

    Diplomacy was never alive. In obstetrics we call it a "blighted ovum". It was just for show. Many of us wanted this to happen, for there will be one less hizbollah, hamas, Iran supporting state. A much needed victory against terrorism without loss of American life. Compare and contrast with Iraq.

    August 4, 2012 at 10:55 am | Reply
  12. KEVIN

    Unless we can get Russia and China in agreement to involve themselves with DIRECT negotiations with Assad and the disorganized "rebels" the game is over as to outside involvement in Syria.

    August 4, 2012 at 6:14 am | Reply
  13. rotorhead1871

    usually when the shooting is going on..diplomacy does not work. either side is still convinced that they will prevail....diplomacy usually starts working when one side is going to lose and they want to slow the other side down or negotiate for a better deal...

    August 3, 2012 at 11:41 pm | Reply
  14. The Photo Guy

    The first mistake was even considering the "Annan plan". That guy is a complete joke and provides nothing of value except show the world how to accept bribe money from Iraq from their oil for food program. Further more the very fact anyone one at the UN this moron could sway a terrorist is dreaming. Once again, the UN serves as nothing more than worthless organization to cure the worlds woes. A puppy with no teeth could do more damage.

    August 3, 2012 at 9:26 pm | Reply
    • The Photo Guy

      The first mistake was even considering the "Annan plan". That guy is a complete joke and provides nothing of value except show the world how to accept bribe money from Iraq from their oil for food program. Further more the very fact anyone one at the UN thought this moron could sway a terrorist is dreaming. Once again, the UN serves as nothing more than worthless organization to cure the world's woes. A puppy with no teeth could do more damage. I needed to produce my corrections since I was to upset to write correctly the first time.

      August 3, 2012 at 9:30 pm | Reply
    • sigmond seamonster

      Diplomacy is not the IMF, CFR, and the UN. They are business organizations designed for the acquisition of countries at a PROFIT. The only "diplomacy" they bring are contractually on their terms and conditions, after infiltration by their intelligence units and cloaked military to assist in overthrowing a government. That is not diplomacy, that is acquisition under the guise of "peace".

      August 4, 2012 at 2:29 am | Reply
    • goodbyeandsolong

      The United Nations is like the League of Nations was–a farce. The only difference is that that United Nations led by Don Quixote (aka Kofi Anan) and his bozos continue to speak like they can make a difference. Let us eliminate funding from the UN and expel it from US soil!

      August 6, 2012 at 12:39 pm | Reply
  15. Dave NY USA

    "Is diplomacy dead in Syria?"
    Really? REALLY?!
    What genius at CNN came up with that question?

    August 3, 2012 at 6:40 pm | Reply
  16. sparks2000

    At the State Department, the answer is "no." --that is what our media has been reduced to....they are spokesmen of our gov't....sad but true

    August 3, 2012 at 5:14 pm | Reply
    • highspeed

      They are spokesmen for ISRAEL.

      August 3, 2012 at 5:40 pm | Reply
      • Richard

        It's the same thing... What can you do, it started a few criminals, now supported by 10s of thousands of American Paid/Armed Insurgents. What can one tiny country like Syria do about that??
        It's like if part of Arizona succeded, then Russia and China started Arming Mexicans and others to cross over and fight the US government. It'd be hopeless!!

        August 3, 2012 at 6:24 pm |
      • sam

        poor "highspeed" whose brain runs at low speed; clogged by the sands of the Palestinian mantra: "woe is me, woe is me, everyone but us is responsible for our misery". reveling in victimhood rather than making peace. "we wont talk until the settlements are frozen" and when the settlements are frozen for 10 months, without any concession by the palestinians, rockets daily and still no meaningful talk. what the heck?

        August 4, 2012 at 11:39 am |
  17. Sal

    Assad will never give up control of Syria. He will destroy his country and it's people before he relinquishes control. He will sacrifice the country and the people before he gives in. It's like a divorced couple fighting over who gets the kids. Some men and women will kill their offspring before giving control to the other parent. Looks like it's going to be the same situation in Syria. 

    August 3, 2012 at 2:58 pm | Reply
  18. waloofpinkay

    Assad and his wife must be dealt with as they have dealt with the insurgents.

    August 3, 2012 at 2:08 pm | Reply
    • sigmond seamonster

      American and Israeli assassin squads to sway Global opinion on the matter would be more apt

      August 4, 2012 at 2:31 am | Reply
  19. Socrates

    Hoping for a 'soft landing' in Syria. Really? After the West, Turkey, the corrupted Saudis and Qatar and Israel behind the scenes have already destroyed that country because is run by a dictator, Really? I am sure you should know by now that democracy in the Middle East is a forbidden word not because the people doesn't want it but because the US prefer to do business with degenerate kings and dictators than presidents elected democratically. The hipocresy of the West is amazing, they lie so much that at the end they think they are telling the truth. There is no way back in Syria, it is to nasty right now and it will get nastier. At the end there will be one winner: Al-Qaeda and the big looser: the civilians who has been sacrificed like sheep by both sides.

    August 3, 2012 at 2:07 pm | Reply
  20. citizenUSA

    The grabber headline in the "world" section said, "Is diplomacy dead in Syria"? At this piont it's a real stupid question but the answer is, just as much as freedom and democracy are dead in China and Russia.

    August 3, 2012 at 2:01 pm | Reply
    • William F. Phuckley

      Sometimes nature needs a hand culling the herd.

      August 3, 2012 at 2:12 pm | Reply
      • William F. Phuckley

        That was in response to Terrible_Ted.

        August 3, 2012 at 2:13 pm |
  21. Terrible_Ted

    Soon the missles wil be flying, Halleluja...Hallelujah. Maybe the world will finally change when confronted with a few billion peoples deaths. Thats what it's going to take to finally bring about this 'change' that everyone wants. Until then it's business as usual.

    August 3, 2012 at 1:50 pm | Reply
    • rosie

      You are assuming that there are men in this world with ball$ enough to actually launch a missile. Never met one yet.

      August 3, 2012 at 4:19 pm | Reply
  22. William F. Phuckley

    Am truly looking forward to the day when this country picks a fight with someone who can actually fight back. Those 4000, or so dead saps in 7 years will be 4000 7 weeks, or less. Then we'll hear some real screaming from the hawks. Not likely to happen though, as we are supreme hypocrites.

    August 3, 2012 at 12:12 pm | Reply
    • sam

      want to see a hypocrite, a liar and apparent traitor? look in the mirror. they do have mirrors in dearborn don't they?

      August 4, 2012 at 11:41 am | Reply
  23. jason

    t's a pity Nelson Mandela is not in good health because he would been the person to deliver peace. He sat with people that imprisoned him for 27 years and managed to change things – why can't the rebels do that if they really want to save lives. How did anyone think there was going to be peace when Hilary Clinton came out of the last meeting including Susan Rica saying we don't think it's going to work – regime change is the only way. That gave the rebels no reason to want a cease fire because they had support behind them. It's so sad to see so many people die because of a goal to change a few people in power.

    August 3, 2012 at 12:03 pm | Reply
  24. Marco Hsiao

    [ Killing 100,000 innocent Iraqi Muslims that is a big crime ]

    The US uses lie – weapon of mass destruction – to murder more than 100,000 innocent Iraqi civilians and 4500 US soldiers; force Iraq from Iran's enemy to become Iran's ally. Thus the US is dirtiest country on violating human right and violating morality in the 21st century.

    The US also kills lots of innocent Muslims in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya and Syria. Libya's election has proved more than half of Libyan people support Gaddafi, but the US murders Gaddafi and his grandchildren (age below 12).

    The best strategy for the US long term interest – The US to pays apology and compensation to Iraq (US$ 6 trillion), Afghanistan (3 trillion), Pakistan (1 trillion) Libya (1 trillion) and Syria (1 trillion). Besides, Obama and Hillary Clinton should kneel down to the tomb of Gaddafi and his grandchildren to say sorry.

    August 3, 2012 at 11:30 am | Reply
    • The Photo Guy

      Wrong Marco Hsiao
      But alas you will not even begin to understand how the world works, much less what is really going on over in that region. Now I could talk really slow as you use your crayons as the person (so called leaders) were murdering, and raping children. But that must be O.K since some put a stop to it. The land of terrorists was culled and you honestly think people were better? Remember the people took down and killed Gaddafi. Yet again you cannot produce a level in intelligence to fully understand basic facts. Before you produce your idiot responses, research real sources first.

      August 3, 2012 at 9:40 pm | Reply
  25. Steve

    Who Cares? If you get 'rid' of Assad, then you get the Muslim Brotherhood in place, think that's any better? LMAO I wouldn't be 'surprised' if the Chem weapons are released one way or the other – then the USA can say they are 'protecting. the World again.

    August 3, 2012 at 11:23 am | Reply
    • Sodomite

      Think it'll be any worse? If the Syrian people opt for the Muslim Brotherhood – let 'em. It's their country.

      August 3, 2012 at 11:40 am | Reply
  26. Denverboy

    In referance to the headline.....

    "WELL...........DUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU'" It's dead and was stillborn...sad but now it's blood in the streets on both sides....Kofi's plan was no plan.because there was no bite to the Syrian government of it was Not followed..So it was Dead when they agreed to it....

    August 3, 2012 at 11:05 am | Reply
    • KEVIN

      Denver, even if the UN gave Assad the "bite" or as we say here in America "an offer he can't refuse" What is going to happen to Syria? These rebels are disorganized and every whacko extreemist in the ME is flooding into Syria. These whacko extreemists live to fight and kill EACH OTHER. The game is over as to outside influence in Syria.

      August 4, 2012 at 6:36 am | Reply
    • Amrutha

      Sharon September 5, 2010 If you live where I do being a racist is the safe way to live. The blkacs in Akron, OH USA are constantly ganging up and hurting unsuspecting people. We have 28% black and they DO do all the crimes against white peeps. Getting tired of wondering where this will go. Civil war in America?

      October 10, 2012 at 8:45 pm | Reply
  27. Aaron Chaney

    DAMASCUS (SANA) – Authorities Raid Two Terrorist Hideouts In al-Sadat Neighborhood

    In conjunction with locals and after internal investigations and observation procedures were undertaken, authorities raided a terrorist hideout in al-Sadat neighborhood in al-Amara area in Damascus, and among a number who have been charged under newly enacted Law No. 22, several terrorists were fatally injured.

    A source at Damascus police headquarters said that during the preliminary interrogation of those who were arrested '...they revealed the location of another hideout in the same area which was then raided by authorities, who as a result killed and injured a handful of these treasonous plotters.'

    Listed among the confiscated weapons cache from the two locations were automatic rifles, handguns, sniper rifles, PKC machineguns, grenades and ammo.

    A police spokesman pointed out that the ID's of several detained terrorists lists them not as locals from al-Sadat neighborhood, but rather as coming from areas outside of Damascus countryside.

    DAMASCUS, (SANA) – Army Units in pursuit of vanquished terrorist groups in Yalda, Babila and Jdaidat Artouz

    An Army unit stormed the dens being used by armed terrorist groups in Yalda and Babila, Damascus countryside, killing a number of seditionists and arresting others.

    In Jdaidat Artouz, Damascus countryside, a unit from the Syrian Army dealt a crippling blow to an armed group which resulted in four deadly fatalities and the injury of an unconfirmed number of them.

    +

    DEIR EZZOR (SANA) – Authorities Pursue Terrorist Groups in Deir Ezzor

    In Deir Ezzor, authorities continued to pursue terrorists in the neighborhoods of al-Jbaile and Jamiyet al-Rasafa and though a handful managed to flee, several others were killed or severely injured.

    A SANA source in the province informrd that among the dead terrorists were Salah al-Hamada and Salah al-Jassem.

    In a related note, authorities outflanked fleeing terrorists in al-Qusour neighborhood in the city which resulted in the killing and injury of several complicit individuals.

    In the town of al-Mayadin in Deir Ezzor countryside, competent authorities likewise pursued and engaged a terrorist group, killing two and wounding one of its members.

    +

    IDLEB (SANA) – Authorities Confront Terrorist Group in Idleb Countryside

    'Operation Target Traitor' has successfully subdued a terrorist group which was blocking roads and attacking passersby at the Kafer Najda junction in Idleb countryside, with the action seeing the resultant deaths of the suspects.

    +

    MOSCOW (ITAR-TASS) – Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez underscores his country's support of the Russian and Chinese stances with respect to Syria's sovereignty.

    Russian ITAR-TASS News Agency quoted President Chavez in a press conference held following his return from Brazil on Wednesday, "The problems in Syria should have been solved by the Syrian's themselves and via peaceful means."

    The President expressed his regret that certain European governments 'who should know better' have decided to join in lockstep with a US/Zionist plot by recognizing and abetting those who are undermining Syria by also extending them aid in the form of money and weapons and the President pledged to counter this with a donor effort of his own that would extend and provide a bit of friendly assistance to the resistance.

    Chavez made clear the necessity of condemning any act of terror being perpetrated against civilians and that anyone who commits such acts on the asinine assumption that it would result in the handover of a sovereign government is uncategorically 'a deceived and deluded individual.'

    August 3, 2012 at 11:00 am | Reply
  28. Aaron Chaney

    HOMS (SANA) – Fifty plus terrorists surrender and hand in their weapons to authorities. Terrorists targeted and killed.

    In the central city of Homs, military personnel discovered a tunnel linking al-Qarabees neighborhood to al-Qosor and Dek al-Jin.

    The tunnel was being used as a passageway by armed groups in order to facilitate the distribution of their weapons which were confiscated following an intense altercation with Syrian armed forces from inside the tunnel which was thereafter collapsed and demolished.

    Several Terrorists Killed, Others Surrender in Homs

    Authorities set up a sting operation to target an armed terrorist group in al-Qseir countryside.

    An official source told a SANA correspondent that this pre-dawn raid led to the killing of every member of that wing of the armed terrorist group while adding that authorities also stormed the hideout of an armed terrorist group in al-Mouj town in al-Qseir countryside and likewise killed and injured several terrorists.

    Similarly in al-Ghanto village in Talbiseh district, security forces disrupted an armed terrorist group's schemes by inflicting heavy losses on them which caused the other elements who were defending the terrorist corridor to surrender themselves and as well their weapons.

    Authorities in Homs confront and attack armed group...
    Competent authorities quelled attacks by an armed groups on several law enforcement checkpoints in al-Qseir, killing or injuring a number of these terrorists.

    SANA quotes a military source on condition of anonymity in Homs as saying that the ongoing 'Operation Target Traitor' campaign, which is designed to purge the landscape of seditionists, will cost the terrorists dearly. This case in point incident resulted 5 terrorist causalities and as well 15 others who were reportedly injured.

    +

    ALEPPO (SANA) – On Wednesday, authorities engaged an armed terrorist group that opened fire on passing cars in Khanaser area in Aleppo Countryside.

    An official source at the province relates to SANA that terrorists were driving machinegun-mounted SUV cars and added that several of these subversives were killed or subsequently wounded during the encounter.

    'The armed terrorist group of three gunmen who attacked law-enforcement personnel in Talkalakh area in Homs Countryside have been extinguished. Those three terrorists, Mustafa al-Kurdi, Ahd Najm and Iyad al-Kurdi were all killed when their car was destroyed.'

    Military Forces Inflict Heavy Casualties In North Aleppo

    Military aerial forces on Wednesday bombarded armed terrorist groups in the Handarat area, north of Aleppo, according to an official source in the province who recounted to a SANA reporter that tens of terrorists were snuffed out and killed and that some were identified as Arab nationals.

    The source added members of a special task force has destroyed several SUV cars that were mounted with DShK machine guns.

    Meanwhile in the town of al-Shahara west of Aleppo, authorities set an ambush into motion that led to the deaths and injury of a large number who have been identified as Arab foreign mercenaries.

    A source in the province confirms to SANA that listed among the dead are terrorists Ali Sakerdeli and Abdelsalam Jebrael.

    In that same context, authorities trapped a terrorist group in the al-Atareb area of Aleppo countryside and destroyed a pickup truck they were using which was equipped with an anti-aircraft machinegun.

    The source went on to affirm this was the same armed group who attempted to attack law-enforcement forces in the village of Kafer Aleppo.

    Firefights took place in Aleppo city according to a SANA source on the scene who quoted Syrian armed forces that a band of fleeing terrorists in Ard al-Hashkal area south of Salah Eddin neighborhood were pursued and engaged, which saw the subsequent killing and wounding of a number terrorists and as well several arrests.

    Reinforced by army tactical units, Security forces of the Badiye Development Center in Khansar area, Aleppo countryside, confronted terrorists who attempted to break into the center and killed as well hobbled several of these outlaws. Three pickup trucks they were using and five cars have been confiscated. A total of seven terrorists were apprehended and charged with sedition.

    August 3, 2012 at 10:59 am | Reply
  29. sez

    The guy that could have really calmed this all down was Mommar however alas you killed him. So it looks another bad day for the world. Heres the thing why not just butt out and it will all go away.

    August 3, 2012 at 10:31 am | Reply
    • Mike

      Because by the time it goes away, hundreds of thousands of Syrian civilians will be dead.

      August 3, 2012 at 10:49 am | Reply
      • Sodomite

        Good thing we "intervened" in Iraq. then – otherwise it could have been worse.........so far its ONLY 100,000+ civillian deaths (and counting). We have no business being in Syria.

        August 3, 2012 at 11:20 am |
  30. Sean

    I think you could still solve the problem in Syria with diplomacy if the west respects the Syrian government and give it a chance to bring peace and stability to the country. Also if the west get it to their thick scull that democracy does not work the same in all countries!!!

    August 3, 2012 at 10:23 am | Reply
    • NetStaff

      Its not about democracy, its about preventing Russia from exporting the natural gas to Europe and letting Qatar exporting it instead from Syria.
      It was never about democracy, if it was, they would've cared about what the Saudi's government is doing to its own people and also no one mentioned that Saudis have INVADED bahrain...another country just to prevent an uprising over there against the king?

      How is it people in Syria are considered fighting for democracy *with* weapons and people in Bahrain are considered thugs and they are *without* weap
      ons!!!
      Why does Clinton does not shed those alligator's tears over what is happening in Bahrain?

      Pathetic!

      August 3, 2012 at 10:32 am | Reply
    • CelestialOne

      Netstaff,
      At least you have the meat between the ears unlike many airheads here. It is never about democracy. American plan is to neutralize Iran and the road leads to Damascus first. Even the blind can see that.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:56 pm | Reply
    • The Photo Guy

      Oh sure because all terrorists and murders believe in this option you suggest. If you are speaking with someone is who has been oppressing their citizens, diplomacy options will be laughed at. But of course, once again I'm am more than sure you call recall sport stats, and which celeb is dating who. It's best to leave the world issues to those who understand the issue at hand.

      August 3, 2012 at 9:48 pm | Reply
  31. The wondered

    No matter the justification...there you see a dictator bombing his own Country to the stone age and allowing his militia to kill defenseless families of his own people....like Nero burning Rome ..Dictators do tend to get delusional and drunk with power...history always deals them the same fate...

    August 3, 2012 at 10:15 am | Reply
  32. JohnG

    you guys all read the article/blog... author's mission accomplished

    August 3, 2012 at 9:34 am | Reply
  33. Marco Hsiao

    [ The US kills 100,000 innocent Iraqi Muslims that is a big crime ]

    The US uses lie – weapon of mass destruction – to murder more than 100,000 innocent Iraqi civilians and 4500 US soldiers; force Iraq from Iran's enemy to become Iran's ally. Thus the US is dirtiest country on violating human right and violating morality in the 21st century.

    The US also kills lots of innocent Muslims in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya and Syria. Libya's election has proved more than half of Libyan people support Gaddafi, but the US murders Gaddafi and his grandchildren (age below 12).

    The best strategy for the US long term interest – The US to pays apology and compensation to Iraq (US$ 6 trillion), Afghanistan (3 trillion), Pakistan (1 trillion) Libya (1 trillion) and Syria (1 trillion). Besides, Obama and Clinton should kneel down to the tomb of Gaddafi and his grandchildren to say sorry.

    August 3, 2012 at 9:28 am | Reply
    • stephan

      Why don't you kneel down over here..... Quadafied!!!

      Do you like how we have immortalized your god here in the states?

      August 3, 2012 at 10:05 am | Reply
    • Mike

      1. The United States didn't set of IEDs, attack mosques, and butcher Sunni families... the Iraqis did that themselves. Still, given the hundreds of thousands of Kurds that Sadaam killed, I think the country in general is better off, even with the civilian casualties that were suffered at the hands of the insurgency.

      2. Maybe you weren't paying attention, but the US very specifically never sent troops into Libya... Barak Obama was quite adamant about not doing so. We did provide logistical and surveillance support to our NATO allies, however. The US is currently not in Syria either, which is kind of what we're arguing about in the rest of these comments.

      3. Gee, you'd think 12 trillion dollars in payouts would show up in a budget somewhere, given that that's almost four years of our entire budget at current spending levels.

      August 3, 2012 at 11:02 am | Reply
  34. true

    Russia and China have much to gain by taking their stance, China in particular cannot appear to be against socialism or dictatorship. So their stand is clear however they must theyre just postponing the inevitable. A world where no one wants to be ruled by tyrants.

    August 3, 2012 at 9:22 am | Reply
    • King of Men

      I like socialism. Where would we in the US be without it? What with the military, police, postal workers, civil servants, teachers, politicians..................................

      August 3, 2012 at 1:55 pm | Reply
    • Sodomite

      Would that also include the people of the numerous countries around the world whose dictators were put in power by the US?

      August 3, 2012 at 2:49 pm | Reply
  35. Bezboz

    "It's a pity that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton spent months of diplomatic effort, traveling from capital to capital pushing the "Annan plan" as a viable political transition strategy, all the while the administration knew it had little chance of succeeding. "

    Only an idiot thinks Clinton wanted a soft landing. That really is hilarious!

    August 3, 2012 at 9:19 am | Reply
  36. ron

    Of course it is dead, it has been for some time. When has diplomacy worked for Muslims??

    August 3, 2012 at 9:15 am | Reply
  37. Regalo

    What is surprisng is that the writer did not mention the true story and that is the Administration was speaking out of both sides of its mouth. Obama secreltly orders the CIA etc to train the rebels and on the other side of its mouth it calls for the Annan peace plan. I am sure that the " rebels" only listened to one side of the mouth.
    But what is truly disappointing is to consider the the reaction of the Assad regime use of force as something wrong. There is no country that would sit by and allow violent thugs to take over. Assad is a dictator but the idea that arming a bunch of Sunni"s guns to overthrow a government that is supported by most of its people ( for a variety of reasons) is irresponsible and a low poiint in American diplomacy.

    August 3, 2012 at 9:15 am | Reply
    • stephan

      Assad's regime murders children... not by accident, on purpose to try to control the populace. That's all I need to know, for my full support of his complete destruction by whatever means.

      August 3, 2012 at 10:07 am | Reply
      • Sodomite

        Our glorious Abraham Lincoln was responsible for the deaths of 600,000 Americans.

        August 3, 2012 at 11:24 am |
  38. Dave

    UN has been and still is a joke. Please shut this money hole down.

    August 3, 2012 at 9:05 am | Reply
  39. sam

    another "critic" that knows more about the subject than the professionals being critiqued! I respect the opinion of the "wizard of Oz" over the opinion of Ms Labott every time.

    August 3, 2012 at 9:04 am | Reply
  40. Soviet Union

    "It's a pity that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton spent months of diplomatic effort, traveling from capital to capital pushing the "Annan plan" as a viable political transition strategy, all the while the administration knew it had little chance of succeeding" – What a pile of (rap!! Clinton torpedo this plan from the beginning meeting with so called "friends" of Syria to coordinate effort to replace Assad Bashar. She never supported any dialogs, only US bully ultimatums. CNN STOP publishing that 9rap.

    August 3, 2012 at 9:00 am | Reply
  41. just wondering

    What diplomacy.... DO AS WE SAY OR WE WILL KILL YOU sound's kinda like the REPUBLICAN WAY do as your told and shut up

    August 3, 2012 at 8:43 am | Reply
    • captnmike

      Republican way?excuse me but arn't the mayors of Chicago, Boston, San Francisco all dems.Didn't they just just tell a major fast food chain that that expressed an opinion to shut up and get out of town. How could you even make a comment like that, idiot

      August 3, 2012 at 9:37 am | Reply
      • Sodomite

        Its called "freedom of speech".

        August 3, 2012 at 11:22 am |
      • Test Tickles

        They didnt tell them to get out of town.
        They just said they werent welcome.
        Its called freedom of speech.

        Iddy ott.

        August 3, 2012 at 12:34 pm |
    • Lily

      TheFunologist on August 6, 2010 @thegirldawn Nah you'll be fine! Just take some warm clothes as a bauckp for weather changes. But you're sure to have a blast my friendGet your Fun on! Jay The Funologist

      October 10, 2012 at 2:03 pm | Reply
  42. Lindy

    The UN is full of hypocrites..today Syria bombed a palestinian camp and not one condemnation..if it had been Israel they would be screaming their heads off...

    August 3, 2012 at 8:42 am | Reply
    • Soviet Union

      It is shame to Palestinians so they send fighter to Damascus to help rebels. Syria was standing by for decades by Palestine resistance, but looks like fight for Shia BS cectarian war is more valuable for Palestine then fight for freedon. Syria bombed camp for reason.

      August 3, 2012 at 9:03 am | Reply
  43. Michael Akpo Inyang

    All effort to conflict resolutions cannot fail, except it was a farce. Lifes are lost, if dailouge which is refine fails, l think a more radical approach should be adopted.

    August 3, 2012 at 8:37 am | Reply
    • Soviet Union

      Agreed. I suggest that Russian Navi will deliver firepower support tio Syrian Arabic Army. Also, in any attempt of NATO bombing coorinate effort for air defence and earlier radar warning to all Syrian defence forces. Provide satellite images to Syrian security forces from Turkey, Jordanian and Iraq borders. Provide laser giuided munition to Syrian airforce. Does it sound radical to you?

      August 3, 2012 at 9:07 am | Reply
    • Bill J. Melvin

      Till we get rid of the clu kluk clan mentality in congress and get rid of the so called out of the 1800 1900 lobby game we have very poor examples to any other country.
      Wake up folks and vote smart. We have as honest president as possible at this time and maybe ever.
      God Help America

      August 4, 2012 at 1:32 pm | Reply
  44. saeed

    fuc,ckk kofi annan ghana is getting aid from un to help its own people this happends when u got people like this kofi annan that allow western countrys to strip hes country of all its natural resources and hinder the countrys development

    August 3, 2012 at 6:19 am | Reply
    • Fearless Freep

      Hey, the camel head is back.

      August 3, 2012 at 12:36 pm | Reply
      • saeed

        Funny this coming from a Irish guy how's sister is posted on half the internet on every adult movie and site.

        August 3, 2012 at 1:01 pm |
      • saeedTheTowelHead

        Baaaaaaaaaah, Baaaaaaaaaaaah, Baaaaaaaaaah, Daaaaaaaaaaaaaddy?

        August 3, 2012 at 2:06 pm |
  45. 66th Strategic Command & Operations Unit.

    Russia & China are upset that the west is pushing for some sort of action but at the same time they aren't doing anything to help stop the massacres or anything going on there but rather prolonging it essentially.

    August 3, 2012 at 3:46 am | Reply
    • Soviet Union

      Well.. I like action. Do you? Lets see... lets say you were born as Alawi in Syria and now some Shia is demanding power. You know from examples, many examples, from Iraq about Shia fight. Take Fellugah as an example. You know if they win, you are good as dead. Just take a look on recent Youtube post about Aleppo killing Assad supporters. What action would you take? Ah? You are not Strategic command... you just a punk.

      August 3, 2012 at 9:14 am | Reply
  46. Nate

    I don't want to bomb Syria, for one- but I do want to make it look like Russia and china have tied my hands to prevent me from doing so.

    August 3, 2012 at 12:19 am | Reply
    • Soviet Union

      Message from Russia.. It is for your own good, baby, your own good. So, 10 year from now you will not cry, saying "What am I doing there? Where is my 100B dollars went? What about my money?"

      August 3, 2012 at 9:17 am | Reply

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