On Tuesday, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MID) reported that Russia’s top diplomat disagreed with his American counterpart in a phone conversation about the situation in Syria. The MID stated that US Secretary of State John Kerry told Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov that Syria’s government was to blame for the use of chemical weapons in that country, but Lavrov rejected that viewpoint. The MID said, “Lavrov rejected such an assessment, citing relevant arguments on the Russian side”. Western powers are considering armed intervention in the two-year civil war in Syria after an apparent nerve gas attack killed hundreds of people last week in Damascus, which the opposition claimed was an action of government forces. The Syrian government quickly denied the allegations, saying that it had evidence of rebel groups using chemical weapons. US Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul wrote on Facebook on Monday, “The Syrian régime has chemical weapons. The opposition does not”.
The Syrian unrest began in March 2011, later escalating into a civil war. According to UN estimates, more than 100,000 people have died in the conflict so far. The UN Security Council has so far not authorised any military intervention in the Syrian crisis. Moscow, along with Beijing, previously vetoed three UN Security Council resolutions condemning Syrian President Bashar al-Assad‘s government. Russia has been Syria’s most important ally during the civil war. Moscow sent to Damascus weapons that it said it was supplying under previously-agreed deals. On Tuesday, Russia harshly criticised the USA for allegedly using “unproven excuses” to justify military action in Syria and said that Moscow was “seriously disappointed” by Washington’s decision to put off a bilateral meeting to discuss the crisis.
27 August 2013
They’re beating the war drums on CNN and Fox News! It’s all bullshit, smoke n’ mirrors, and political theatre. Everybody “in the know” is aware that Moscow and Beijing will veto any UN Security Council Resolution, so, it’s all Sturm und Drang for the yahoos. Only a Rod Dreher or John Whiteford will take it all seriously, so, relax kids. The only way that it can blow up is for someone to fuck up or for some cowboy to “misconstrue” orders. The chances of either are slim to none. Don’t interrupt your Labour Day weekend plans…