- The Washington Times - Monday, September 2, 2013

As the White House dithers on how to respond to the chemical weapons attack unleashed by President Bashar Assad on rebel forces outside Damascus, and delays decision on U.S. military force, some in Syria have struck a more decisive tone: Let’s take preemptive action.

At least one leading minister suggested Syria adopt that policy and strike first, The Blaze reported.

“I am among those who call for a preemptive” strike by Syria, said Syrian Minister for Reconciliation Ali Haidar, in a telephone call with Bloomberg News on Sunday.

He couched the statement in these terms: The U.S. has already declared war on Syria, so Syria might as well make the first military move.

On Saturday, President Obama announced that rather than bypassing Congress, his administration would turn to lawmakers and ask for authorization to launch a military strike against President Bashar Assad’s strongholds.

Mr. Haidar took objection to the president’s remarks.

“It’s unacceptable that a Syrian is afraid to leave his home for fear of the U.S. threat, while an American ambassador can wander about as he pleases,” the minister said. “It’s unacceptable that our leaders have to go into hiding to protect themselves while U.S. interests are proceeding normally.”