Longtime Clinton family confidante Sidney Blumenthal warned then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in 2011 that Syrian President Bashar Assad is no reformer.
“Enclosed is an article by David W. Lesch, perhaps the U.S. expert with the closest relationship with Bashar al-Assad, developed out of my continuing correspondence with him, an edited version which I have appended,” in a message to Clinton on June 20, 2011. “The bottom line is that Assad’s gestures at reform are delusional attempts to recreate the pattern of his own recent past when he gained a modicum of respect from the West.”
The message was one of more than 3,869 Clinton messages released by the State Department Wednesday.
As many of her critics have been quick to point out, Clinton told CBS News in March 2011 that Assad is a reformer.
“There is a different leader in Syria now,” Clinton said at the time. “Many of the members of Congress of both parties who have gone to Syria in recent months have said they believe he’s a reformer. What’s been happening there the last few weeks is – is deeply concerning. But there’s a difference between calling out aircraft and indiscriminately strafing and bombing your own cities, then police actions, which frankly have exceeded the use of force that any of us would want to see.”