Kerry: Inaction Will Embolden Extremists in Syria
Despite assurances that America will stay out of the civil war in Syria, secretary of state John Kerry gave his first indication that U.S. action may shift the balance of power on the ground. Rebel forces with ties to radical groups will benefit if the United States does not take action in Syria, Kerry argued, though he was careful to emphasize that any U.S. intervention is intended as a statement against Bashar Assad’s use of chemical weapons rather than to shift the balance in the country’s civil war.
“I guarantee you if we turn our backs today, the picture we all saw in the paper today and the media of those people shot, that will take place more because more extremists will be attracted to this, because they will be funded as the only alternative in order to take on Assad,” Kerry told MSNBC’s Chris Hayes on Thursday, referring to a New York Times report that featured a rebel group brutally executing pro-Assad forces.
American intervention, he said, would hurt “about eleven really bad opposition groups.”