Hans Blix on how the world would receive a strike on Syria by the US alone

Updated

As the debate about military intervention in Syria continues, it seems like almost everyone has an opinion on the matter. At the end of the day, though, the debate will be dictated by the evidence. The intelligence gathered must back-up the claims being made. 

For first hand insight on the tension between waiting for the UN’s conclusions and a nation’s sense of urgency for military action, we called an expert – former chief UN weapons inspector for Iraq from 2000–2003, Hans Blix. On Thursday night’s show, Rachel shared Blix’s response to Secretary of State Kerry’s case for action against Syria. We also spoke with him about what it would mean if the U.S. acted alone in Syria. Here’s what he had to say: 

I think it is very unfortunate, and I think an unwise course on which the U.S. is now. They talk about enforcing a norm, the ban on the use of chemical weapons, and Mr. Obama said here that it was not he that set the red line, it was the world community that set the red line. Well, that can be said, but I don’t think the world community has appointed the the U.S. or the U.K. or anybody else to be the policeman to police these norms.

It’s the security council that is the world/s policeman, a rather poor policeman, I agree, but nevertheless a policeman. 

And also, if we say that this is the norm, that the red line is drawn by the world community, then there is another norm, red line, that is drawn by that community, and that is the charter of the United Nations. And the charter forbids member states to use the force or threat to use the force against others unless they are acting in self-defense against an armed aggression or the have the authorization of the Security Council.

Blix went on to refer to President Obama’s own remarks upon receiving the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009, in which he talked about the global community isolating nations that don’t adhere to international norms:

I think if U.S. goes alone here and not adheres to the standards of the charter, it will weaken the U.S. It will isolate the U.S. in the world. There are some states that will support and some states that will not object terribly but the vast majority of states, I think, would oppose a unilateral strike. And if they don’t… If they were to take the issue to the General Assembly, I think they would see that very clearly.

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Hans Blix on how the world would receive a strike on Syria by the US alone

Updated