January 2, 2013 |
BEIRUT, Lebanon --An American journalist was reported missing in Syria on Wednesday, six weeks after he was reportedly abducted by armed men. James Foley, 39, was taken by gunmen on Nov. 22 in the northern province of Idlib, his family said. Foley, a freelancer, had reported previously from Syria, Iraq and Libya, where he was held prisoner in 2011 by government forces during that country's civil war. Most recently, he had been shooting videos in Syria for Agence France-Presse.
November 27, 2011 |
REPORTING FROM BEIRUT -- Arab efforts to reach a compromise with Syria over its bloody crackdown on dissent appeared to be all but over Sunday as foreign ministers meeting in Cairo voted overwhelmingly to impose punishing sanctions against the embattled regime of President Bashar Assad. The rare move by the Arab League, an organization often criticized as spineless and ineffective, came after Syria repeatedly ignored deadlines for accepting Arab observers to monitor a peace agreed to earlier this month.
April 25, 2013 |
Syria is believed to have a large stockpile of chemical weapons. U.S. intelligence agencies now suspect that Syrian President Bashar Assad's government has used small amounts of these chemicals against rebels fighting to unseat him, an assessment shared by Britain, France and, most recently, Israel. So what is known about Syria's chemical weapons? A report citing Turkish, Arab and Western intelligence agencies estimated that Syria has about 1,000 tons of chemical weapons stored at about 50 sites, mostly in the north of the country.
September 21, 2013 |
DAMASCUS, Syria - At age 70, Ahmad Saidi took up arms after the slaying of his son, a father of five who was killed when a remote-controlled bomb blew up his car. A neighbor suspected in the attack was later overheard bragging about his "gift" for the Saidi family. "This is our homeland," Saidi, a textile merchant, said this week as he stood in camouflage pants amid the shrapnel-scarred interior of the Zubair Mosque, where even a stack of Korans had been shredded by bullets. "We will die defending it. " The defiant septuagenarian with the patrician crown of snow-white hair and matching beard is not a soldier with the Syrian army or a militant in a rebel brigade.
November 6, 2013 |
BEIRUT - A bomb exploded Wednesday in a busy square in central Damascus, killing eight people and wounding at least 50, Syria's state-run media reported. The attack occurred in Hijaz Square in front of the historic Hijaz railway station, a crowded area in the heart of the capital flanked by shops and a hotel. Among the casualties, state media said, were workers carrying out maintenance in the now-inactive station, which has been converted to a museum and memorial for dozens of railroad workers killed in sabotage strikes on the national railway system.
September 10, 2013 |
President Obama addressed the nation Tuesday evening about the escalating crisis in Syria and whether the U.S. will take military action to punish President Bashar Assad for allegedly using chemical weapons on his own people. “Because these weapons can kill on a mass scale, with no distinction between soldier and infant, the civilized world has spent a century working to ban them,” Obama said. “On Aug. 21, these basic rules were violated, along with our sense of common humanity.” Failing to hold Assad accountable for violating these international norms, Obama warned, would be a “danger to our security.” TRANSCRIPT: The argument for action on Syria Still, we didn't get a definitive answer from our war-weary president, who reminded the American people that he's “spent 4 1/2 years working to end wars, not to start them.” Instead, he left us in a state of limbo . Yes, he'll push for limited military strikes if necessary, but he said he'd rather find a diplomatic solution that would align with his “deeply held preference for peaceful solutions.” Here's what a few of our Op-Ed contributors had to say in response to Obama's speech.
August 28, 2013 |
President Obama appears increasingly ready to launch a military strike in response to Syrian President Bashar Assad's apparent use of chemical weapons against civilians. But the goal won't be to topple the Assad government, even though Obama has wanted that outcome for more than two years. Instead, White House officials say, the goal will be more limited: deterrence. The strikes will be aimed primarily at deterring Assad from using chemical weapons again. But there are other kinds of deterrence Obama is hoping for too. PHOTOS: Portraits of Syrian rebels He hopes to deter other adversaries, especially Iran, from concluding that he doesn't mean it when he proclaims a "red line," as he did on chemical weapons in Syria last year.
September 10, 2013 |
MOSCOW -- Syria confirmed Tuesday that it has accepted a Russian plan to allow its chemical weapons to be placed under international control and eventually dismantled. The Syrian agreement is based on the understanding that the plan could prevent a U.S. military strike, Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Moallem said. “We agreed with the Russian initiative, proceeding from the understanding that it must cut the ground from under the feet of the U.S. aggression against our country,” Moallem said during a meeting with the speaker of Russia's lower house of parliament, Sergei Naryshkin.
August 31, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - As often happens at the end of a busy day, President Obama took a quiet walk Friday night on the rolling South Lawn of the White House with his chief of staff and longtime confidant, Denis McDonough. The two men talked war. Pentagon officials had fine-tuned their target lists in Syria. Five U.S. destroyers in the eastern Mediterranean were awaiting orders to launch fiery salvos of Tomahawk missiles. Obama's aides had canceled Labor Day weekend plans, expecting an imminent attack.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 31, 2013 |
It's hard to know whether Sarah Palin would be so quick to condemn a Republican president for venturing the idea that the U.S. should take military action against Syria in response to what the White House said is a documented chemical weapon attack by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on his own people. But in a Facebook post called “Let Allah Sort it Out,” the 2008 Republican vice presidential nominee-turned-Fox News personality let President Obama have it. It was Obama, she said, who painted himself into a corner a year ago when he said that chemical weapons represented a “red line” that Syria's president should not cross.