April 25, 2013
The United States has evidence that the chemical weapon sarin has been used in Syria on a small scale, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said Thursday.
But numerous questions remain about the origins of the chemicals and what impact their apparent use could have on the ongoing Syrian civil war and international involvement in it.
When asked if the intelligence community’s conclusion pushed the situation across President Barack Obama’s “red line” that could potentially trigger more U.S. involvement in the Syrian civil war, Hagel said U.S. officials are still assessing the situation and need all the facts.
In a letter to lawmakers, the White House cautioned that given “the stakes involved and what we have learned from our own recent experience, intelligence assessments alone are not sufficient. Only credible and corroborated facts that provide us with some degree of certainty will guide our decision making.”