Former National Security Council director Uzi Arad said Sunday that he was not sure an attack on Bashar al-Assad's forces would be successful, or a good idea altogether.
Speaking Sunday at the International Institute for Counter-Terrorism's (ICT) World Summit on Counter-Terrorism, taking place at the Herzliya Interdisciplinary Center (IDC), Arad said that President Barack H. Obama had bitten off more than he could chew, and that the best thing he could do now was extricate himself from the corner he had backed himself into with as much dignity as possible.
“Syria is not a signatory to international conventions against the use of chemical weapons,” said Arad, so the legal basis for intervention by the West was somewhat shoddy. “You cannot say that Assad violated an international convention Syria is not signed onto.” Assad, therefore, sees no reason not to use such weapons against anyone he feels threatens his rule.
As a result, Arad said, there is a real possibility that any country that takes on Assad may find itself mired in a very ugly situation. “I find it hard to believe that intervention will bring about a substantially better situation,” he said. “The best thing now would be for Obama to carefully bring the crisis to an end, without creating negative ramifications in the region and the world, whether before or after an attack,” Arad added.