Syria Links – April 7, 2017

Remarks by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and National Security Advisor H. R. McMasters.

After the strikes, diplomacy is necessary – Anthony Blinken.

Striking at Assad carries opportunities and risks for Trump – David Sanger.

What effect will Trump’s airstrikes really have? – Daniel Byman.

Trump’s attack on Syria – the good, the bad, and the ugly – Ryan Evans.

The issues that make dealing with the mess in Syria so difficult – Robert Farley.

Explaining nerve agents – Dan Kaszeta. More about the institutional means necessary for them – Kelsey Atherton.

Transcript of Trump’s statement and video. I found Trump’s invocation of God, the word used three times in the speech, strange. He also asked us to pray for the souls of the dead and for God to bless the whole world. I’ve never been comfortable with presidents invoking God’s blessing on the United States, and this is more presumptuous, both to whatever God Trump believes in and to the beliefs of the rest of the world. Praying for the dead is a mostly Catholic practice, even narrower than asking for God’s blessing.

This is an oldie-but-goodie article on the idea that macho posturing in the international arena confers “credibility”, which serves to deter bad actors. It doesn’t.

Will add more articles below the jump as they appear.

Trump just bombed Syria. What next? – Marc Lynch. Nice overhead photo of the airfield before the bombing.

Seven lessons from Trump’s Syria strike – David Frum.

Trump’s strike is more of the same in Syria – Christopher Phillips.

What do top legal experts say about the Syria strike?

Does Trump know what to do after striking Syria? – Eliot Cohen.

Limited strikes risk entrenching Assad’s strategy – Max Fisher.

Weren’t Syria’s chemical weapons destroyed? It’s complicated. – Scott Shane.

Elizabeth Saunders has more questions than answers on the strike.

April 8, 2017

Trump’s confusing strike on Syria – Steve Coll.

The media loved Trump’s show of military might. Are we really doing this again? – Margaret Sullivan.

The grim logic behind Syria’s chemical weapons attack – Anne Barnard.

Here’s what US missiles hit at the Syrian airbase – Caroline Houck. With overhead photos.

More links – to documents on the chemical weapons attack. Jean Pascal Zanders is an expert in chemical weapons and related policy. He is on Twitter and updates his blog regularly.

Is Trump’s bold Syria strike a dangerous miscalculation? – Kori Schake

In Syria, Russia falls victim to its own success – Julia Ioffe.

April 9, 2017

After Syria, is there still a taboo against the use of chemical weapons? – Richard Price. Spoiler: yes, there is.

A lot of revisionist history being churned out about President Barack Obama’s “red line” and the destruction of Syria’s chemical weapons program. Here’s a discussion from someone who was there, Derek Chollet.

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