Hollande Says Use of Chemical Weapons in Syria Requires International Response


Credit: kyro/wikimedia

French President Francois Hollande has said that the use of chemical weapons in Syria  "obliges the international community to act," adding that any response must be undertaken while being compliant with international law. Hollande's comments came shortly after it was reported that Syrian forces with the help of Hezbollah had retaken the strategic town of Qusair.

A peace conference that had been planned for some this month. However, U.N. and Arab League envoy to Syria Lakhdar Brahimi has said that the conference may not take place until July, saying that both sides of the conflict are not ready to participate.

One of the options commonly discussed regarding intervention in Syria is the imposition of a no-fly zone similar to the one that was put in place over Libya in 2011.

However, there are reasons to believe that a no-fly zone, even were it imposed by the American military, would not necessarily lead to Assad's downfall, a point Micah Zenko of the Council on Foreign Relations outlined earlier today.

Aside from putting a no-fly zone in place France and other countries could send weapons to rebels in Syria. However, there is the chance that such weapons could end up in the hands of jihadists who are fighting with the rebels.

Even if it was possible to send weapons to rebels in Syria while making sure Al Qaeda-linked groups did not get ahold of them it is possible that rebels from the Free Syrian Army would use weapons to contribute to the conflict's overspill and the region's destabilization. Earlier today it was reported that the military chief of the Free Syrian Army said that his men are ready to fight Hezbollah in Lebanon, a move that would only expand the conflict, presumably something Hollande and others who have expressed an interest in intervention would like to avoid.

NEXT: Sources: Top IRS Official Implementing ObamaCare on Leave over Gifts

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Knock yourself out, Francios.

    1. Yeah, I don’t see anyone stopping him from grabbing a rifle and joining the fight.

      1. From the look on his face, he appears to have severe hemorrhoids.

        Obviously he couldn’t be expected to fight.

  2. Here’s your international response: Whoever used chemical weapons in Syria is a dick and we all hate you. hth

    1. So Scott did it?

  3. I know that there are certain ways in which chemical weapons are particularly horrible, and particularly easy to use against large civilian populations. But they have been killing the shit out of each other in Syria for a long time now. And bombs and bullets get people just as dead. It seems silly to me that chemical weapons is this extra special line that cannot be crossed. War fucking sucks and everyone is going to do whatever they can to win if it comes down to it.

    1. Vincent: Max, six billion people on the planet, you’re getting bent out of shape cause of one fat guy.
      Max: Well, who was he?
      Vincent: What do you care? Have you ever heard of Rwanda?
      Max: Yes, I know Rwanda.
      Vincent: Well, tens of thousands killed before sundown. Nobody’s killed people that fast since Nagasaki and Hiroshima. Did you bat an eye, Max?
      Max: What?
      Vincent: Did you join Amnesty International, Oxfam, Save the Whales, Greenpeace, or something? No. I off one fat Angelino and you throw a hissy fit.
      Max: Man, I don’t know any Rwandans.
      Vincent: You don’t know the guy in the trunk, either.

      1. That was a pretty great movie.

    2. Especially since bombs use chemical explosives and bullets are propelled by chemical propellants.

      1. And, of course, without chemicals, life itself, would be impossible.

        1. You are merely a bag of chemicals.

          1. Monsanto has some for sale.

    3. Europeans have an extra strong aversion to them because of their impact on WWI.

  4. If the Syrians don’t stop using chemical weapons, he will taunt them mercilessly.

  5. The president who sent troops into Mali to deal with the direct results of arming the Libyan rebels, now wants to arm the Syrian rebels. I wonder if France will be willing to mop up the the fallout in the region after this intervention. Or maybe they’ll come beg the US to defend their liberal interventionism, again.

  6. Just what Hollande needs: a decisive French victory in Syria to propel his approval rating. Bonne chance!

  7. Just another excuse for interventionism and world policing.

  8. I think we should arm both sides. They can have as much as they can afford. STIMULUS!

    1. a syrian jobs plan. change we can believe in.

  9. France is tired of surrendering, and they’d have to cut their vacation down to two months to handle this themselves!

  10. My frustration with realpolitiks: wondering aloud what business of ours it is whether France involves itself in Syria, or what is going on in Syria to begin with, is treated as naive. Not further inflaming a conflict in which America should remain a neutral spectator is treated as naive. And we wonder why the empire is so expensive to maintain.

  11. The endpoint of “we have to do something” is “how the fuck did we get into this mess?”

  12. You know which other French Prez intervened in Syria?

  13. Apparently Francois is unfamiliar with the Prime Directive.

  14. SMack it up, smack it down, Smack it all around!

    1. Anonbot gets it.

  15. If France and Britain are going back to mucking up the Middle East we should steer as far clear as possible.

  16. What Hollande really means is “socialize the cauualties.”

    1. Casualties

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.