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picasso peace

Peace Dove, by Pablo Picasso, 1949 (Photo Credit: Google Images)

“After a strike, one can expect anything:” clarification

I received two comments from persons who did not understand the meaning of a quotation.  In an interview, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said that “after a strike, one can expect anything.”  The statement is not mine and it may be unclear.

After a strike, i.e. the gassing to death by sarin of 1,429 Syrian citizens, by forces under the command of Bashar al-Assad, Syrian President Assad can expect anything: retaliation.

Similarly after a “punitive” strike on Syria by the United States, the United States can expect retaliation on the part of ?

Strike A:  Assad on Syria (civil war) = Strike B:  the US on Assad

Danger: Since President Assad is a protégé of Russian President Vladimir Putin, we do not know who would strike after strike B, but in all likelihood, there would be retaliation and Assad may be helped by his ally, Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Strike C = unknown

Assad: “You can expect everything.”

“Exceptional” Nations

Because of its status as a “superpower” the United States is currently expected to intervene in the Syrian crisis.  Therefore, at the moment, the US’ status as superpower is placing a heavy and perhaps unfair burden on US President Barack Obama and on his people.

Moreover, the US has now been called an “exceptional” nation, which would give it not only the right to strike but also the responsibility to do so.  Is this acceptable?


A War Crime

However, on 16 September 2013, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon  reported that it had been determined by the United Nations that 1,429 Syrian citizens were gassed to death near Damascus, on 21 August 2013.  This is a “war crime.”  Therefore, it would be my opinion that matters have changed.  It is now official that Assad’s forces acted in violation of an international law. Theoretically, this is a matter for the United Nations to deal with.


The Last Post on the Syrian Crisis

I did not intend to write a post on Syria today.  In fact, I did not intend to write any more posts on the Syrian crisis.  This link will take you to the latest development:


I will close by saying that I grieve profoundly for those who have had to flee Syria, for those who have been prevented from fleeing Syria, and for the families and friends of those who were gassed to death.

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Joseph Haydn (31 March 1732 – 31 May 1809)
Cello Concerto No. 1 in C major, H. 7b-1- Adagio
Jacqueline du Pré (26 January 1945 – 19 October 1987)
picasso-pablo-dove-of-peace© Micheline Walker
September 20, 2013