WASHINGTON: The US military chief told a congressional committee on Tuesday that US strikes on Syria would degrade the Syrian government’s overall military capabilities, besides causing other collateral consequences.
“Yes,” said Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen Martin E. Dempsey when asked if US military strikes would have other “collateral consequences for the Syrian government, including the degradation of its overall military capabilities”.
Chairman of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relation Senator Robert Menendez, who asked this question, also asked him to define the objectives of the planned US military action against Syria.
“To change the regime’s calculus about using chemical weapons, and degrade his deployment and other capabilities.”
Gen Dempsey said that once the US completed degrading the Syrian government’s capability to use chemical weapons, “we would probably return (considering) to what we might do with a moderate opposition”.Asked if he backed providing further support to the Syrian opposition, the military chief said: “Yes, I do.”
On Tuesday afternoon, the US Congress began an early hearing on President Barack Obama’s request for using military force in Syria hours after he held a key meeting with senior lawmakers at the White House.
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