Susan Rice in 2017: ‘We Were Able to Find a Solution that Actually Removed the Chemical Weapons’ from Syria
SUSAN RICE: On the so-called chemical weapons red line, indeed we had put in place the assets necessary to use force, to try to strike at those chemical facilities and command and control entities that we thought were relevant to our chemical weapons concerns. In the mean...
MARTIN: So why didn’t it happen?
RICE: Because in the meantime, we were able to find a solution that actually removed the chemical weapons that were known from Syria in a way that the use of force would never have accomplished. But the fundamental problem of Syria persists, and that is that there’s enormous human suffering. And we have not - we, the United States, the international community, the U.N., Russia, everybody else - has not managed to find a negotiated solution, which would, by necessity, mean dealing with the problem of Assad continuing to govern Syria in the most violent and repressive way.
MARTIN: President Obama is not a man who speaks off the cuff often. There’s a lot of thought that’s put into the language that he uses. Do you regret the articulation of a red line in Syria?
RICE: It’s not for me to regret or otherwise. I think the president stated the U.S. view, which is the use of chemical weapons is not something we’re prepared to allow to persist, and we didn’t. We managed to accomplish that goal far more thoroughly than we could have by some limited strikes against chemical targets by getting the entirety of the declared stockpile removed.