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By Tammy Bruce
Team Obama's bizarre behavior helps Gitmo terrorists foil justice
Topic - Syrian Government
With rebels fleeing into neighboring Lebanon, Syrian government troops and Hezbollah fighters captured a strategic town near the frontier Sunday, ousting opposition fighters from their last stronghold in the vital border area.
Syria's foreign minister, a close confidant of President Bashar Assad and a staunch defender of the government, underwent a successful heart operation Friday, state media said.
Israel has opened a new front in its attempts to halt weapons smuggling to Hezbollah, striking one of the group's positions inside Lebanon for the first time since the sides fought a war eight years ago.
The U.N. Security Council called on Syria Thursday to speed up the removal of its most harmful chemical weapons agents from the country, expressing "growing concern" at several missed deadlines.
The Syrian government extended its intense aerial campaign against rebel-held areas of the northern city of Aleppo on Monday, conducting a series of airstrikes that killed at least 18 people, including five children, activists said.
The United States accused the Syrian government Thursday of using stalling tactics to delay efforts to remove and destroy chemical agents, an indication that the international community's patience is wearing thin over the slow pace of the operation.
Syrian opposition says Assad must not stay in power, setting up clash at outset of peace talks
Chemical weapons were probably used in four locations in Syria this year, in addition to the confirmed attack near Damascus in August that forced the government to abandon its secret chemical stockpile, U.N. inspectors have said.
Syrian troops captured a contested suburb of Damascus on Wednesday as the government forged ahead with a punishing military offensive that already has taken four other opposition strongholds south of the capital, state media said.
Syrian President Bashar Assad said in an interview with state-run Chinese media that other nations may incite rebel forces into attacking U.N. inspectors who are headed into the country to secure chemical weapons.
Prospects for restarting peace talks in Syria's civil war depend on the outcome of negotiations for the Syrian government to give up its chemical weapons, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Friday as meetings on the arsenal lurched into a second day.
Russian President Vladimir Putin urged President Obama on Saturday not to rush into a decision on striking Syria, but to consider whether strikes would help end the violence and be worth the civilian casualties they would inevitably cause.
President Obama said Wednesday the U.S. has concluded that the Syrian government carried out a large-scale chemical weapons attack against civilians last week, but he still has not decided what action to take against the nation.
Congress is increasingly resisting the administration's case for limited military strikes against the Syrian government, though sentiment is growing on Capitol Hill that President Obama can — and must — find a way to do more to arm moderate rebels fighting to topple President Bashar Assad.
Snipers opened fire Monday at a U.N. vehicle carrying a team investigating the alleged use of chemical weapons in Damascus, a U.N. spokesman said. The Syrian government accused the rebels of firing at the team, while a rebel representative said a pro-government militia was behind the attack.