'The Obama administration indicated on Sunday that it would launch military strikes against Syria even if it failed to get the backing of the US Congress, claiming evidence that sarin gas had been used in chemical attacks outside Damascus last month.
Less than a day the president vowed to put an attack to a congressional vote, secretary of state John Kerry said the administration was determined to act against the regime of Bashar al-Assad, and did not need the backing of Congress to do so.
President Obama "has the right to do this no matter what Congress does", said secretary of state John Kerry, one of the leading advocates of a military assault on dictator Bashar al-Assad for allegedly using chemical weapons on 12 neighborhoods outside Damascus on 21 August.Giving the vote to Congress was a mere formality. The next eight days will see a 'public diplomacy' offensive by Washington on a vast scale to marshal the US and other willing participants towards military intervention. The impression has to be of an irresistable momentum. As Kerry put it,
"We have a coalition of more than a few but this is a situation that's going to grow as the evidence comes out."The decision to put the matter to Congress was merely a ploy to buy more time. There is no absolute guararantee that with 'new evidence' and Washington pressurising it allies for a for or against us position that the British government and opposition might not strike up a new found unity of purpose.
It it looks unlikely given the political situation in Britain but the reality is that both the government and opposition are trying to use Britain's non- involvement in any future military intervention as the fault of each other, the better to present themselves as the best guardians of Britain's role as a 'global player'.
If Washington starts finding new and more reliable allies, a new vote might be put to Parliament to get it to vote the right way with the connivance of both political parties. Clearly, Kerry's message is that, unlike Britain, the US is not hamstrung by indecisive partisan politicians, a message that may be heeded....