US will act against ‘monster’ Assad with or without UN ‒ Haley

The US will act against the Syrian government with or without a UN blessing, US envoy Nikki Haley told the Security Council, blaming Russian “obstructionism” for allowing the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria and beyond.

“We are beyond showing pictures of dead babies. We are beyond appeals to conscience. We have reached the moment when the world must see justice done,” Haley declared to the Security Council on Monday, accusing Russia of backing the “monster” [Bashar] Assad, who was murdering children with chemical weapons.

“The Russian regime, whose hands are all covered with the blood of Syrian children, cannot be ashamed by pictures of its victims. We’ve tried that before,” Haley said, adding that “no civilized government would have anything to do with Assad’s murderous regime.”

Moscow has challenged claims, made by the Western-backed NGO ‘White Helmets’ and Jaysh al-Islam (Army of Islam) militants, that the Syrian government conducted a chemical attack against civilians in the Damascus suburb of Douma. Russia’s envoy to the UN Vassily Nebenzia called it “fake news,” noting that no traces of the alleged attack were found in the area after Syrian troops liberated it from the militants.

Haley, however, spoke of the attack as if it and the Syrian government’s culpability were proven facts. If the UN refused to follow Washington’s lead and intervene in Syria due to “Russia’s obstructionism,” Haley said, the US will go it alone. read more

US President Donald Trump has met with military commanders about a possible “forceful response” to alleged chemical attacks in Syria. Washington is ready to act without UN approval, its envoy told the Security Council earlier.

The alleged chemical attack in Syria “will be met and it will be met forcefully,” Trump told reporters on Monday evening. “We can’t let atrocities like we all witnessed… we can’t let that happen in our world,” Trump said, “especially if because of the power of the US, we are able to stop it.”

“We’re getting some very good clarity” on who is responsible for the attack, the president added.

“We have a lot of options militarily, and we’ll be letting you know pretty soon.”

Earlier in the day, US envoy to the UN Nikki Haley spoke of the alleged chemical attack in the Damascus suburb of Douma on Saturday as a proven fact, and blamed Russia and the “monster”Bashar Assad for it.

On Monday, however, Russian and Syrian troops inspected the area, which had been cleared of Jaysh al-Islam (Army of Islam) militants, and found no traces of any chemical agents.  read more