If you can read this, either the style sheet didn't load or you have an older browser that doesn't support style sheets. Try clearing your browser cache and refreshing the page.

(Huffington Post)   Upon further review, we have determined that Syria did use chemical weapons on its own people. Please set the war clock to "Soon"   (huffingtonpost.com) divider line 31
    More: Scary, State Department, chemical weapons, Homs, Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, Syrian Army, Golan Heights, children playing, girl play  
•       •       •

13083 clicks; posted to Main » on 15 Jan 2013 at 8:42 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



Voting Results (Smartest)
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest


Archived thread
d23 [TotalFark]
2013-01-15 08:56:09 PM
3 votes:
2.bp.blogspot.com

"The language of the Great Convention is clear enough: Use of atomics chemical burn yer-ass agents against humans shall be cause for planetary obliteration of your stinking shiatty country."
2013-01-15 09:30:08 PM
2 votes:

The Angry Hand of God: Yay. Syria. Another country just like Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Saudi Arabia, etc, that I would just let out a big "meh" if everyone died. Can't we just focus on making America better now? We kinda have some problems of our own to focus on, and even with some of these countries with "nuclear" weapons wouldn't last 30 minutes if they actually launched anything at us...


You sound like Old testament God
2013-01-15 09:11:50 PM
2 votes:

Big Ramifications: And haven't Left Wing Howler Monkeys been awfully quiet. Come on guys. Fire up! To paraphrase a couple of their own glib arguments from the past:

The Left don't care what happens in Syria because there isn't any oil there sorry, I mean because Syria isn't a good looking white female sorry, because there aren't any white Christians Republicans to screech at.


That was an exceedingly stupid statement. Do you have to wear a towl around your neck to catch the drool?
2013-01-15 06:01:42 PM
2 votes:
LOGIN WITH YOUR FOREIGNPOLICY.COM ACCOUNTNo...
2013-01-15 06:01:34 PM
2 votes:
OH hell is right make me some tea.  I'm not signing up to any site just to read a freaking article.
2013-01-16 03:19:05 AM
1 votes:
They didn't attack us with them, so it's none of our business.
2013-01-16 02:34:00 AM
1 votes:

violentsalvation: make me some tea: mjbok: We are not the world police, that is the job of the UN. That and letter writing.

Exactly. No UN resolution = no intervention. I'd like to see Syria overthrow Assad and all that, but without global consensus, we cannot and should not act.

Fark the UN and their consensus. They'll never have a consensus with Russia and China cool with Assad. And neither will do sh*t if we intervene.

I don't want us to go to "war" war. But if this is true(and I'm not without doubt), I don't mind us helping the resistance with some targeted airstrikes. Chemical weapons are just something else entirely, If Assad is at a point to do that to his own people then he is a threat to the region, a threat to Israel, and if Israel gets hit, you know what? I don't want WWIII right now.

I don't see why using our air power to help the freedom fighters was cool in Libya but is suddenly taboo in Syria. Oh yeah, that was an actual war for oil.


maybe because these Syrian "freedom fighters" are Al Qaeda.
2013-01-16 01:00:39 AM
1 votes:

Fano: Presumably you were referring to propaganda about German cruelty in WWI, but it certainly crippled your argument to invoke atrocities that were WORSE than anything that propaganda claimed.


I didn't invoke anything such thing. Please read the exchange. I posted about the lies to get americans into war. One specifically was world war one. Then someone who didn't understand history got really confused and then acted to "invoke atrocities that were WORSE than anything that propaganda claimed" from a later war, world war two. They aren't even from the same war and in that later war weren't known to americans until the war was nearly over. Thus the concentration camps of WW2 were totally irrelevant. The post you replied to is me explaining that they had no bearing on convincing people to go to war whatsoever.
2013-01-16 12:42:47 AM
1 votes:
BronyMedic:

No, the issue is that Syria is using a weapon that the entire world the tame press and hypocritical politicos of the USA and NATO views as anathema and unthinkable to use on their worst enemies on their own citizens secular-liberal and/or Islamist Sunnis...

Brony, guy, you know that for ~1200 years the Sunni Arab majority has viewed the region's ethnic and/or religious minorities as "not really real people" at best, that they didn't get a decent break till the Assads and their friends slapped together a coalition of those minorities and imposed it on the majority by force. It's as if The Rainbow Coalition had been truly multi-colored and come to power, the big difference being that Syria literally never had a "democratic republican" electoral tradition like we do so the only way the Syrian version could have come to power is by a military coup and the inevitable "necessary measures" that go with that. And ever since then the Sunni Arab majority, in one guise or another, has been protesting against the "injustice," just as the Tea Party here has been on the warpath against Obama since Fall 2008, with the difference again being that here the Teapartiers' talk about armed insurrection against the minority usurpers has been only talk.

The Sunni view of the Baathist regime does resemble the ex-Confederate rhetoric about "Negro rule" during Radical Reconstruction except that in Syria the "carpetbaggers" and "freedmen" did come to power and stayed in power for 40 years. Imagine if Frederick Douglass had been Lincoln's vice president instead of Andrew Johnson, and then two generations later outside powers had decided to help the downtrodden ex-slaveowners rebel against their "oppression."

This is not to say the Assadists are anything less than murderous bastards, only that (thanks in large part to the Baathists' own doing) they're absolutely right that a Sunni victory would mean a bloodbath against the minorities. So now the only way to avert reciprocal massacres is to partition the country along ethnic/religious lines as the French wanted to do before WW2, letting the Sunni Arabs have their own way in their own area without pushing the others around as they did through over a millennium of dhimmitude.

The only involvement "outside" (i.e. US-dominated) forces should have is to separate the combatants and rearrange the demographics. Before it's done by the Syrians themselves, with all the mess that would entail. And before "Al Qaeda" inherits the country.

Modern Syria and Lebanon are as artificial as the ex-colonies of Africa. Fix it by fragmenting the territory into "dukedoms" and then knit them together loosely under the NATO aegis.

The alternative, a secular democratic republic like the US and NATO countries have, is simply beyond the ken of the average Syrian of whatever persuasion for the foreseeable future. Maybe once they're separated they can start viewing each other as people instead of "those people."

Of course we probably should just nuke it from orbit and go on to the next humanitarian crisis. But, well, you know...
2013-01-16 12:35:57 AM
1 votes:

halfof33: leadmetal: Perhaps Hermann Goering can explain it to you:

Well, then, the non-peasant is quoting Hermann Goering. From the Nuremburg Trials.That CERTAINLY settles that. Any other words of wisdom from some of history's greatest criminals you want to share with us? Hitler perhaps?

He really quoted that, I am at a loss.

But he meant "retarded" in the positive, non-insulting way.


It's a shame you are governed by emotions and conditioning rather than any sort of objective rational thought. The sociopaths that often rise to the top of political systems are practiced the art of manipulating people. That's how they get to be such positions. Perhaps if you could put aside your emotions you would understand it. About now your only hope is to be a troll but given your initial lack of a grasp on history... well...

optional: Except, leadmetal, you insulted halfof33 earlier saying he was emotionally and rationally retarded. So yeah, I guess you are also unable to read and comprehend by this logic?


There's name calling and then there is observation. There was no name calling from me, just my observation of what was posted. Something that was clearly a state of being slowed, or perhaps delayed academic progress. A retardation. It is a correct word to use for that observation. As one would retard spark advance. I I admit the choice of words a bit of a troll to see the reaction. I could have easily used others. But seeing someone key in on a word like Beavis and Butthead can be slightly amusing.
2013-01-15 11:55:11 PM
1 votes:

Doktor_Zhivago: "One day Samuel said to Saul, "It was the Lord who told me to anoint you as king of his people, Israel. Now listen to this message from the Lord! 2 This is what the Lord of Heaven's Armies has declared: I have decided to settle accounts with the nation of Amalek for opposing Israel when they came from Egypt. 3 Now go and completely destroy[a] the entire Amalekite nation-men, women, children, babies, cattle, sheep, goats, camels, and donkeys.""


Baron Munchausen: What's this?
Vulcan: Oh, this is our prototype. RX, uh, Intercontinental, radar-sneaky, multi-warheaded nuclear missile.
Baron Munchausen: Ah!...What does it do?
Vulcan: Do? Kills the enemy.
Baron Munchausen: All the enemy?
Vulcan: Aye, all of them. All their wives, and all their children, and all their sheep, and all their cattle, and all their cats and dogs. All of them. All of them, gone for good.
2013-01-15 11:48:48 PM
1 votes:

halfof33: leadmetal: Also on display is your emotional and rational retardation.

leadmetal: Ahh name calling and displaying another common trait of people like yourself, an inability to read and comprehend.

LOLZ! That is fantastic!

Anyway, you have all the hallmarks of the conspiracy theorists. Lets take one? "To get the peasantry to give up its children and treasure to the war effort." You see, our friend here thinks most people (except him and his friends) are peasants, easily manipulated by evil people that people like him see right through! Those ships that Germany was sinking in the Atlantic? Only a peasant would take notice of them.

Call me a retard again.


I didn't call you a retard. I stated you demonstrated retarded rational and emotional abilities. Now go look up the definition of the word retarded. (Hint: I am using in the way one would retard ignition timing on a 4 stroke gasoline engine) It was a test to see if you'd act like a character out of "Idiocracy" and congratulations, you have.

It's also amazing how much you read into things, just fill things in out of your own imagination on cue right out of your social conditioning. Here's a hint, peasantry just refers to those who don't make the decisions. Just the people who don't profit from war. The ones who at best can hope to get back to their homes in one piece. That's all. But they have to be convinced to go along. Then once they are convinced they cannot accept they were suckered so they stick by the lie and lash out at anyone who mentions the truth. You're a perfect example.

Perhaps Hermann Goering can explain it to you:
davidkretzmann.com

I've got a reading assignment for you. It was written by the most decorated Marine. Someone who's opinion about war and people being manipulated into it usually causes most people like yourself to go silent. Anyway, it might teach you something about what war is: War is a Racket
2013-01-15 11:43:22 PM
1 votes:

halfof33: Call me a retard again.



Okay, so you're a retard again.


War creates debt
Debt creates loans
Loans generate interest
Interest translates into profit$

/War is hell?
//Depends on the perspective
///Doesn't it?
2013-01-15 11:11:08 PM
1 votes:

halfof33: Ok tin foil, you have obviously no idea about the difference between "justifications" for war and "war time propaganda." They are not the same thing, but it is a subtle difference and there is no way that you will ever understand the difference. No way, you spout grossly inane talking points in the name of history. Pearl Harbor is an inside jobby job!

The fact that you think we went to war because Germans killed babies is farking embarrassing.



Ahh name calling and displaying another common trait of people like yourself, an inability to read and comprehend. It's all emotion. Just another well conditioned product of the american government schools.
Propaganda is how you get people to go to war. To get people to go war requires a number of aspects of manipulations. Which is why I wrote that bayoneting babies was one of those used to get americans into world war one. You do know what the phrase 'one of' means, correct? Each war requires various appeals to emotion. One is fear of the enemy. One is that the war moral and just. One is that the enemy is evil. Usually all three of these and more are used to get people to go to war. To get the peasantry to give up its children and treasure to the war effort. It's just a waste of time with you, I know it's most likely you'll again lash out like one of the characters from "Idiocracy".
2013-01-15 10:50:42 PM
1 votes:

Igor Jakovsky: leadmetal: halfof33: leadmetal: Ahh yes, The Germans are killing babies. The Iraqis are tossing babies out of incubators. When will americans start looking at these manipulative stories with a critical eye? Never? Probably.

The American people drawn into another war, another regime change. The state department wouldn't lie to get what they want. No. Never. When has government ever lied to get what those in it desire?

New century. Same manipulation.

We'll find out it's bullshiat in a few years. Just like has happened many times before.

Yeah, except for that whole Holocaust thing.

That Holocaust thing was not used to get the american people to go to war or support a war or support a revolution or regime change. By the time the american people knew about it, the war was essentially over. Of course one can never let logic get in the way of discrediting those who point out the manipulations.

Remember the Maine!

You're right about the holocaust. I wonder how much this country cared about the Jews based on the way we treated the refugees that Hitler sent here on ships. Half would have been better served by talking about Pearl harbor at which point you would say Roosevelt let it happen so we could join the war.

/I dont believe that BTW, but you were discussing conspiracies.


Conspiracies? Not at all. These are now facts of history. The World War One justification of German soldiers killing babies was a lie. Same with Iraqi military tossing babies from incubators. The Maine was a 19th century boiler explosion, an accident. The Gulf of Tokin incident never happened. There were no WMD in Iraq. These are all historical facts today. All public domain... too old to care about info released and verified that they were all manufactured and/or hyped to get the american people into war.

As to Pearl Harbor, it's slowly coming out how FDR did everything possible to provoke war via foreign policy. But that's more murky because one could always just say 'well the Japanese government chose to attack'. The lie was that the attack was 'unprovoked'. It was provoked much the way the US government is currently provoking war with Iran. Economically and politically while putting the navy out there as a display of strength. Although wrt to Iran the US government will probably do something that violates Iran's territory or in something Iran's government will be justified in defending itself but it will be spun to the american people as an attack.... It would be funny to see the US government react to foreign government putting that much hardware off the east coast.

halfof33: lolz, The USA didn't go to war in WWII because "germans" were killing "babies." But you are definitely backing winners, Hitler, Saddam and now Bashar, truly history's most misunderstood geniuses.


You probably shouldn't put your ignorance on display. Germans killing (bayoneting) babies was one of the excuses used to get americans to go to war in the _FIRST_ world war. You know, roughly a century ago. The one with the trenches.... when the Germans wore those spiked helmets? Here's a nice piece of WW1 propaganda for you:
www.stentorian.com

Also on display is your emotional and rational retardation. Presenting facts of history isn't backing anyone. But if you want to be so easily manipulated that's your choice.
2013-01-15 09:58:27 PM
1 votes:

The All-Powerful Atheismo: Make your own damn tea. This is no time for drinking tea anyway.


Truth be told, the fringe right has put me off tea for good, i think.  Yeesh.
2013-01-15 09:45:46 PM
1 votes:

halfof33: leadmetal: Ahh yes, The Germans are killing babies. The Iraqis are tossing babies out of incubators. When will americans start looking at these manipulative stories with a critical eye? Never? Probably.

The American people drawn into another war, another regime change. The state department wouldn't lie to get what they want. No. Never. When has government ever lied to get what those in it desire?

New century. Same manipulation.

We'll find out it's bullshiat in a few years. Just like has happened many times before.

Yeah, except for that whole Holocaust thing.


That Holocaust thing was not used to get the american people to go to war or support a war or support a revolution or regime change. By the time the american people knew about it, the war was essentially over. Of course one can never let logic get in the way of discrediting those who point out the manipulations.

Remember the Maine!
2013-01-15 09:38:32 PM
1 votes:

Doktor_Zhivago: Igor Jakovsky: The Angry Hand of God: Yay. Syria. Another country just like Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Saudi Arabia, etc, that I would just let out a big "meh" if everyone died. Can't we just focus on making America better now? We kinda have some problems of our own to focus on, and even with some of these countries with "nuclear" weapons wouldn't last 30 minutes if they actually launched anything at us...

You sound like Old testament God

Igor Jakovsky: The Angry Hand of God: Yay. Syria. Another country just like Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Saudi Arabia, etc, that I would just let out a big "meh" if everyone died. Can't we just focus on making America better now? We kinda have some problems of our own to focus on, and even with some of these countries with "nuclear" weapons wouldn't last 30 minutes if they actually launched anything at us...

You sound like Old testament God

"One day Samuel said to Saul, "It was the Lord who told me to anoint you as king of his people, Israel. Now listen to this message from the Lord! 2 This is what the Lord of Heaven's Armies has declared: I have decided to settle accounts with the nation of Amalek for opposing Israel when they came from Egypt. 3 Now go and completely destroy[a] the entire Amalekite nation-men, women, children, babies, cattle, sheep, goats, camels, and donkeys.""

God is love.


Hosea 13:16 - "16 The people of Samaria must bear their guilt, because they have rebelled against their God. They will fall by the sword; their little ones will be dashed to the ground, their pregnant women ripped open."

fc06.deviantart.net
2013-01-15 09:36:56 PM
1 votes:
Ahh yes, The Germans are killing babies. The Iraqis are tossing babies out of incubators. When will americans start looking at these manipulative stories with a critical eye? Never? Probably.

The American people drawn into another war, another regime change. The state department wouldn't lie to get what they want. No. Never. When has government ever lied to get what those in it desire?

New century. Same manipulation.

We'll find out it's bullshiat in a few years. Just like has happened many times before.
2013-01-15 09:34:13 PM
1 votes:

Igor Jakovsky: The Angry Hand of God: Yay. Syria. Another country just like Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Saudi Arabia, etc, that I would just let out a big "meh" if everyone died. Can't we just focus on making America better now? We kinda have some problems of our own to focus on, and even with some of these countries with "nuclear" weapons wouldn't last 30 minutes if they actually launched anything at us...

You sound like Old testament God


Igor Jakovsky: The Angry Hand of God: Yay. Syria. Another country just like Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Saudi Arabia, etc, that I would just let out a big "meh" if everyone died. Can't we just focus on making America better now? We kinda have some problems of our own to focus on, and even with some of these countries with "nuclear" weapons wouldn't last 30 minutes if they actually launched anything at us...

You sound like Old testament God


"One day Samuel said to Saul, "It was the Lord who told me to anoint you as king of his people, Israel. Now listen to this message from the Lord! 2 This is what the Lord of Heaven's Armies has declared: I have decided to settle accounts with the nation of Amalek for opposing Israel when they came from Egypt. 3 Now go and completely destroy[a] the entire Amalekite nation-men, women, children, babies, cattle, sheep, goats, camels, and donkeys.""

God is love.
2013-01-15 09:33:17 PM
1 votes:
Can we just skip this war this time?
2013-01-15 09:07:13 PM
1 votes:
Hm.

Is it too soon to be making a shopping list? What does Syria have that we want? They still have enough oil to make it worth our time to mess with them?
2013-01-15 09:02:08 PM
1 votes:

Solid State Vittles: To be fair, I would need to know the chemical before I would make that leap into calling it a "weapon." What if Syria was just making it rain fluoxetine, lysergic acid diethylamide, and tadalifil on its citizenry?


The article says what it is: Agent 15, which is or is related to 3-Quinuclidinyl benzilate
2013-01-15 08:56:28 PM
1 votes:
Time to call up all those 2nd Amendmenters for their Militia service in Syria.

Am I doing it right?
2013-01-15 08:52:50 PM
1 votes:

netizencain: Ya, because Obama hasn't expanded the war at all.  Or did you miss the fact that Special Operations forces have grown both in number and budget, and are deployed in 75 countries, compared with about 60 at the beginning of 2009


You do realize the mission of the United States Special Operations Command is not just kicking ass, but teaching others to kick ass too, right?
2013-01-15 08:51:23 PM
1 votes:

Krymson Tyde: Apparently the Newtown murders were faked by our government. At least according to some of the more unhinged folks on Facebook


You mean people who need a good cockpunch.

Aarontology: So using chemical weapons, the Syrian government killed fewer people than were killed in Newtown.

And for some, this is evidence we need to go to war.

Makes total sense.


No, the issue is that Syria is using a weapon that the entire world views as anathema and unthinkable to use on their worst enemies on their own citizens, even people who have done nothing to support or fight against the rebel faction.
2013-01-15 07:40:09 PM
1 votes:
Okay, NOW were ready to kick some syrias ass!

Just waiting on the green-light from Netanyahu.
2013-01-15 06:46:56 PM
1 votes:

Aarontology: GAT_00: Hell, yesterday quite a few people were adamant that we not do transport mission to help the French with Mali in maintaining a legitimate government against Al Queda. If that's anathema to the formerly pro-war crowd, what odds are there we go into Syria?

Depends on if it lingers until another GOP president is elected so they can go back to supported global war.


Ya, because Obama hasn't expanded the war at all.  Or did you miss the fact that Special Operations forces have grown both in number and budget, and are deployed in 75 countries, compared with about 60 at the beginning of 2009
2013-01-15 06:13:27 PM
1 votes:
So using chemical weapons, the Syrian government killed fewer people than were killed in Newtown.

And for some, this is evidence we need to go to war.

Makes total sense.
2013-01-15 06:08:49 PM
1 votes:
The Article:
A secret State Department cable has concluded that the Syrian military likely used chemical weapons against its own people in a deadly attack last month, The Cable has learned.

United States diplomats in Turkey conducted a previously undisclosed, intensive investigation into claims that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad used chemical weapons, and made what an Obama administration official who reviewed the cable called a "compelling case" that Assad's military forces had used a deadly form of poison gas.

The cable, signed by the U.S. consul general in Istanbul, Scott Frederic Kilner, and sent to State Department headquarters in Washington last week, outlined the results of the consulate's investigation into reports from inside Syria that chemical weapons had been used in the city of Homs on Dec. 23.

The consul general's report followed a series of interviews with activists, doctors, and defectors, in what the administration official said was one of the most comprehensive efforts the U.S. government has made to investigate claims by internal Syrian sources. The investigation included a meeting between the consulate staff and Mustafa al-Sheikh, a high-level defector who once was a major general in Assad's army and key official in the Syrian military's WMD program.

An Obama administration official who reviewed the document, which was classified at the "secret" level, detailed its contents to The Cable. "We can't definitely say 100 percent, but Syrian contacts made a compelling case that Agent 15 was used in Homs on Dec. 23," the official said.

The use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime would cross the "red line" President Barack Obama first established in an Aug. 20 statement. "We have been very clear to the Assad regime, but also to other players on the ground, that a red line for us is we start seeing a whole bunch of chemical weapons moving around or being utilized. That would change my calculus. That would change my equation," Obama said.

To date, the administration has not initiated any major policy changes in response to the classified cable, but a Deputies Committee meeting of top administration officials is scheduled for this week.

The report confirms the worst fears of officials who are frustrated by the current policy, which is to avoid any direct military assistance to the Syrian rebels and limit U.S. aid to sporadic deliveries of humanitarian and communications equipment.

Many believe that Assad is testing U.S. red lines.

"This reflects the concerns of many in the U.S. government that the regime is pursuing a policy of escalation to see what they can get away with as the regime is getting more desperate," the administration official said.

The consulate's investigation was facilitated by BASMA, an NGO the State Department has hired as one of its implementing partners inside Syria. BASMA connected consular officials with witnesses to the incident and other first-hand information.

The official warned that if the U.S. government does not react strongly to the use of chemical weapons in Homs, Assad may be emboldened to escalate his use of such weapons of mass destruction.

"It's incidents like this that lead to a mass-casualty event," the official said.

Activist and doctors on the ground in Homs have been circulating evidence of the Dec. 23 incident over the past three weeks in an attempt to convince the international community of its veracity. An Arabic-language report circulated by the rebels' Homs medical committee detailed the symptoms of several of the victims who were brought to a makeshift field hospital inside the city and claims that the victims suffered severe effects of inhaling poisonous gas.

Activists have also been circulating videos of the victims on YouTube and Facebook. In one of the videos, victims can be seen struggling for breath and choking on their own vomit. (More videos, which are graphic, can be found here, here, here, here, here and here.)

Experts say the symptoms match the effects of Agent 15, known also by its NATO code BZ, which is a CX-level incapacitating agent that is controlled under schedule 2 of the Chemical Weapons Convention, to which Syria is a party.

"The symptoms of an incapacitating agent are temporary. If someone is exposed to BZ, they are likely to be confused, perhaps to hallucinate," said Amy Smithson, a senior fellow with the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies. "While it is not good news that a chemical agent of any kind may have been used in the Syrian conflict, this Agent 15 is certainly on the less harmful end of the spectrum of chemical warfare agents believed to be in the Syrian arsenal."

The Cable spoke with two doctors who were on the scene in Homs on Dec. 23 and treated the victims. Both doctors said that the chemical weapon used in the attack may not have been Agent 15, but they are sure it was a chemical weapon, not a form of tear gas. The doctors attributed five deaths and approximately 100 instances of severe respiratory, nervous system, and gastrointestinal ailments to the poison gas.

"It was a chemical weapon, we are sure of that, because tear gas can't cause the death of five people," said Dr. Nashwan Abu Abdo, a neurologist who spoke with The Cable from an undisclosed location inside of Homs.

Abdo said the chemical agent was delivered by a tank shell and that the range of symptoms varied based on the victim's proximity to the poison. The lightly affected people exhibited gastrointestinal symptoms, nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain, he said. Victims who received a higher concentration of the poison, in addition to the gastrointestinal symptoms, showed respiratory symptoms as well.

"The main symptom of the respiratory ailments was bronchial secretions. This particular symptom was the cause of the death of all of the people," he said. "All of them died choking on their own secretions."

The doctors said their conclusion that the poison was a chemical agent and not tear gas was based on three factors: the suddenness of the deaths of those who were directly exposed, the large number of people affected, and the fact that many victims returned with recurring symptoms more than 12 hours after they had been treated, meaning that the poison had settled either in their nervous systems or fat tissue.

"They all had miosis -- pinpoint pupils. They also had generalized muscle pain. There were also bad symptoms as far as their central nervous system. There were generalized seizures and some patients had partial seizures. This actually is proof that the poison was able to pass the blood-brain barrier," Abdo said. "In addition, there was acute mental confusion presented by hallucinations, delusions, personality changes, and behavioral changes."

The doctors on the scene said they were not able to pinpoint the poison because they lacked the advanced laboratory equipment needed. They took blood, hair, saliva, and urine samples, but those samples are no longer viable for testing because too much time has passed, they said.

"We took many samples, we kept them, but we cannot get them anywhere because we are in the besieged Homs area," he said. "We are not 100 percent sure what poison was used, but we can say with firm statement that it was not tear gas, that's for sure."

The State Department, in response to inquiries from The Cable, declined to comment on the secret cable from Istanbul or say whether or not chemical weapons were used in the Homs attack, but said that the administration believes Assad's chemical weapons are secure.

"I'm not going to comment on the alleged content of a classified cable," State Department Spokesman Patrick Ventrell told The Cable. "As you know, the United States closely monitors Syria's proliferation-sensitive materials and facilities, and we believe Syria's chemical weapons stockpile remains secured by the Syrian government. We have been clear that if Assad's regime makes the tragic mistake of using chemical weapons or failing to secure them, it will be held accountable."

Shifting red lines

The White House's threats to react to Assad's WMD activity have softened over time. In Obama's Aug. 20 statement, he indicated that "a whole bunch of chemical weapons moving around" would trigger U.S. action.

Obama then shifted his warning to Assad about red lines in December, after intelligence reports stated that the Syrian regime had moved some precursor chemicals out of storage and mixed them, making them easier to deploy. Now, Obama's red line is that the United States will react if Syria uses these weapons.

"The use of chemical weapons is and would be totally unacceptable," Obama said Dec. 3, directing his comments at Assad. "If you make the tragic mistake of using these weapons, there will be consequences and you will be held accountable." That same day, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton added: "we are certainly planning to take action if that eventuality were to occur."

Outside analysts worry that the administration's red line may have shifted again.

"Given the fact you have that in a cable, this indicates that the Obama administration may not simply jump into the conflict because chemical agents are used," said Andrew Tabler, senior fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. "Assad has a much better idea now of what he can do and get away with."

"This shows that actually the red line on chemical weapons is not clear and that the regime may be able to use some chemical agents, and the response might not be immediate," he said.

On Jan. 11, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey said that the U.S. government and the international community doesn't have the capability to prevent Assad from using chemical weapons if he chooses to do so.

"The act of preventing the use of chemical weapons would be almost unachievable... because you would have to have such clarity of intelligence, you know, persistent surveillance, you'd have to actually see it before it happened, and that's -- that's unlikely, to be sure," Dempsey said. "I think that Syria must understand by now that the use of chemical weapons is unacceptable. And to that extent, it provides a deterrent value. But preventing it, if they decide to use it, I think we would be reacting."

Abdo, the Syrian neurologist, said that the doctors treating civilians inside Homs have run out of even the basic medicines they have been using to bring a level of comfort to the victims, such as the drug atropine.

"We hope this information will reach the people in the American government so maybe they will help us," he said. "If the regime does this one more time, we don't have the antidote in our hands anymore and we can't treat it. It's very urgent."
2013-01-15 06:07:19 PM
1 votes:
Has anyone informed the State Department that their "secret" cables seem to be pretty consistently not?

/more leaks than the mens room at a bar giving away free beer
 
Displayed 31 of 31 comments

View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest


This thread is archived, and closed to new comments.

Continue Farking
Submit a Link »






Report