By Maggie Dunning
Staff reporter

On Aug. 21, news broke about Syrian president Bashar Al-Assad allegedly using chemical weapons against his own people.

“The red line that was made about a year ago has been crossed,” said Jared Larson, assistant professor of political science.

U.S. officials were quick to respond to the incident. The Chicago Tribune reported Secretary of State John Kerry said, “President (Barack) Obama believes there must be accountability for those who would use the world’s most heinous weapons against the world’s most vulnerable people.”

On Aug. 26, the Washington Post cited senior administration officials as saying, “Obama is weighing a military strike against Syria that would be of limited scope and duration, while keeping the United States out of deeper involvement in that country’s civil war.”

Larson said, “Ultimately it’s his (President Obama’s) decision but I wouldn’t be surprised either way.”

U.S. warships armed with cruise missiles have been positioned in the Mediterranean while waiting for the decision.

The Huffington Post reported that President Bashar Assad’s government vowed to defend itself against any international attack, warning that such an intervention would ignite turmoil across the region.

While no move has happened the Washington Post cited senior administration officials saying that, “such a move is dependent on three factors: completion of an intelligence report assessing the Syrian government’s culpability in the chemical attack, consultation with allies and the U.S. Congress and determination of a justification under international law.”

The Syrian conflict has been going on for three years.

Larson said, “It’s not black and white, it’s far from black and white.”

Maggie Dunning is a sophomore majoring in communication. You may e-mail her at