Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) is slamming President Obama’s handling of the crisis in Syria, where a revolution against the ruler Bashar al-Assad has turned into a full-fledged civil war.
In McCain’s opinion, the United States should be doing more to aid the rebel forces, and inaction has only led to a more dangerous situation in the Middle East.
Politico summarizes McCain’s interview with CNN’s Candy Crowley:
Sen. John McCain… said on Sunday the situation in Syria has “deteriorated” and the United States needs to assist by providing “arms and equipment.”
“What do we need to do? We need to get arms and equipment to them [and] we need to establish a buffer zone,” McCain said on CNN’s “State of the Union.”
The United States has waited far too long to act, the ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee said.
“Because of our failure to assist, because of our failure to lead other willing nations in the region like Turkey or Saudi Arabia or Qatar and others, this situation has now deteriorated to a situation which is really, really very, very dangerous,” McCain said. “I think it’s retrievable, but I think it’s far, far more complicated and difficult than if we had weighed in a long time ago.”
Watch the interview, via the left-leaning blog “Crooks and Liars,” below:
But will overthrowing the current regime lead to a more stable situation?
There have been numerous reports of al-Qaeda members joining the opposition to overthrow the “secular” ruling regime, and multiple videos seemingly corroborate that, at the very least, the opposition has some pretty fanatical characters.
Over the weekend it was reported that the opposition had pushed its way to Aleppo, Syria’s largest city.
The week’s violence pushed the death toll for the uprising above 19,000, according to the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. The group also said July is likely to be the conflict’s deadliest month so far, with more than 2,750 people killed in the first three weeks – nearly as many as in the previous month.
Benjamin Netanyahu weighed in on Fox News Sunday, warning that chaos surrounding Assad’s fall could allow Hezbollah to access Syria’s chemical weapons.
“That this is something we’ll have to act to stop if the need arises,” he said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
(H/T: Weasel Zippers)