Introduction — April 9, 2017
The current face-off over with the alleged Syrian chemical attack now has the potential to become much more serious. Both Britain and America are now accusing Russia of some degree “complicity” in the attack on Khan Sheikhoun.
This introduces the potential for conflict with Russia over Syria; which is exactly why many voted for Trump last November when Clinton seemed to promise confrontation with her vow to defend Ukraine’s borders.
Then, while Trump was still settling in to the White House, the media was talking about a “new special relationship” forming between the new U.S. president and Putin.
Now, in a sudden about face, Trump’s top diplomat is reportedly about to accuse Putin of complicity in a war crime.
Of course there is good reason to believe that the recent chemical weapons attack was not what the West claims and may even have been staged. Yet suggestions of Russian involvement, if only indirectly, takes the possibility of confrontation over Syria to a whole new level. Ed.
Mary Kay Linge — New York Post April 9, 2017
President Trump’s top diplomat will accuse Russia of complicity in Syria’s war crimes during a face-to-face meeting in Moscow this week with Vladimir Putin’s foreign minister, it was reported Sunday.
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will demand that Russia yank its support from Bashar al-Assad’s bloody dictatorship over Syria, where hundreds of thousands of innocents have died in a savage 6-year-old civil war, the Sunday Times of London reported.
Tillerson will confront Russia with evidence that it knew about — and tried to conceal — Assad’s sarin strike last week that killed 87 people, the paper said.
Tillerson will also charge Russia with breaking its 2013 agreement to oversee the destruction of Syria’s chemical weapons, saying Moscow has “clearly failed in its responsibility” to eliminate the deadly arsenal.
In a Saturday phone call with Tillerson, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov denied that the Syrian military had used chemical weapons in the attack on the town of Khan Sheikhoun, in Idlib province, on Tuesday.
Lavrov said that “an attack on a country whose government fights terrorism only plays into the hands of extremists,” according to a statement from the Russian ministry.
The US and Britain strongly signaled Putin that Assad’s actions can no longer be tolerated.
The trans-Atlantic allies this weekend were composing a plan to demand that Russia halt military support for Assad and let Syria transition to a new government.
British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson canceled plans to meet Lavrov in Moscow after conferring with Tillerson and Prime Minister Theresa May on Friday.
Sir Michael Fallon, Britain’s defense secretary, said Russia is “by proxy responsible for every civilian death last week” in an essay published Sunday.
Russia is responsible for “every civilian death” in Assad’s chemical weapons attack on Syrian people says Fallon
Sam Blewett — The Mirror April 9, 2017
Russia is responsible for “every civilian death” in Bashar al-Assad’s chemical weapons attack on his own people , the Defence Secretary has said.
Sir Michael Fallon said Vladimir Putin’s Kremlin was to blame “by proxy” because it was the Syrian president’s “principal backer”.
Some 87 people, including children, are believed to have been killed in a suspected sarin nerve agent strike on the rebel-held town of Khan Sheikhoun.
US president Donald Trump ordered a strike by 59 cruise missiles on the base he said launched the attack in America’s first direct attack against the Syrian government.
Writing in the Sunday Times, Sir Michael said Russia must be part of the solution to ending the “needless suffering” of Syrian civilians.