Secretary of State John Kerry, accompanied by Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, left, testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington. -AP Photo
Secretary of State John Kerry, accompanied by Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, left, testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington. -AP Photo

WASHINGTON: Arab nations have offered to help pay for any US military intervention in Syria, Secretary of State John Kerry told lawmakers Wednesday as he sought support for missile strikes.

“With respect to Arab countries offering to bear the cost and to assist, the answer is profoundly yes, they have. That offer is on the table,” Kerry said as he appeared before a House of Representatives panel.

The offer was “quite significant,” he said.

“Some of them have said that if the United States is prepared to go do the whole thing the way we've done it previously in other places, they'll carry that cost. That's how dedicated they are to this.”

But he stressed: “Obviously, that is not in the cards and nobody is talking about it, but they are talking about taking seriously getting this job done.”

He was appearing before the House Foreign Affairs committee on the second day of the administration's blitz on Capitol hill to persuade lawmakers to approve limited military strikes.

Washington has led charges that the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad unleashed sarin gas on August 21 against the residents of a Damascus suburb killing what a US intelligence report said was some 1,400 people.

President Barack Obama has insisted that Assad's regime has crossed a red line against the use of such horrific weapons and should be punished and his military capability degraded.

But in a sign of the depth of opposition involvement in Syria, anti-war demonstrators held up red-stained hands behind Kerry's head in a silent protest during his testimony.

Lawmakers are now drafting a resolution to go before Congress which would give the US administration a 60-day deadline for military intervention, which could be extended once for 30 more days. It would also bar any American boots on the ground.

Asked if the time limit was acceptable to administration, Kerry said it would be preferable to have “a trigger in there” if Assad used chemical weapons again.

He indicated that a move to give the White House a further 60 days every time such arms were used would be acceptable.

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee meanwhile held a three-hour, classified session to try to thrash out a draft resolution after Republican veteran Senator John McCain appeared to balk at the plan because he felt it did not go far enough.


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Comments (17) Closed


BIY
Sep 04, 2013 11:38pm

Shame on all who call themselves Arab............ History has some other "More Appropriate" words for someone who thinks and acts like this...

Gulbaz Mushtaq
Sep 05, 2013 12:05am

Very good Arab nations.

Ahmad
Sep 05, 2013 12:55am

Which Arab states have agreed to finance the Syrian invasion?

ali
Sep 05, 2013 01:41am

no matter how many human beings are being killed americans are only interested in cents and dollars, this case of stopping the mass murderer bashaar and his entourage is no different

imran
Sep 05, 2013 01:47am

Arab nations=Saudi Arabia

Atta
Sep 05, 2013 02:28am

A wise enemy is better than a foolish loyal brother/friend

RainMaker
Sep 05, 2013 02:57am

U.S govt planned to destabilize Syria. youtube 'wesley clark policy coup' and listen to the American General in 2007 tell the entire plan to create chaos in 7 countries in 5 years. Syria was on the list. Please play this video on DAWN tv and let atleast pakistanis know the intention of the u.s govt.

G.A.
Sep 05, 2013 03:09am

If its true then they deserve to be occupied by foreign powers. And here we have an increasing number of 'Arab wannabe' Pakistanis. Talk about identity crisis.

MJB
Sep 05, 2013 03:25am

The Arab countries are Saudi Arab and the rulers the dictators of this holy land are basically helping al Qaeda and Taliban in my view. I think USA should not go into Syria no matter what, let Saudis do it them selves and see of they have the guts to do this at all

SRK
Sep 05, 2013 04:11am

Which Arab countries ? Israel or France?

am
Sep 05, 2013 06:22am

Just remember who was behind the 9/11...most of so called Arab countries. no lessons. Syria was not one of them neither was Iraq....

Masoud
Sep 05, 2013 03:17pm

LOL. May Allah have mercy, War will only bring more killings & sufferings with benefit to non

Jumbo
Sep 05, 2013 05:24pm

@Ahmad: KSA, UAE, Behrain and Kuwait

ZQ23
Sep 05, 2013 06:42pm

This is tantamount to the corrupt Arab leaders putting a hit on Asad. And of course the gun happy mercenary is more than happy to comply!

nassae
Sep 05, 2013 06:48pm

M.Jamil
Sep 06, 2013 01:33pm

Lets not kid ourself, there are many real Arab who are always wanted thier monopoly on the affairs. Just they got the money thaey can ask any one any thing and pay.Is it not like a day light what happening in Egypt and who is paying for it? Is this any seceret any more. Wake up man. Popel or country who got money they got No religious. Thier religous is Money and only money.

Mohibullah Khan
Sep 06, 2013 01:42pm

US should not become a hired killer. First smash these Arab countries who want to harm other muslim nations.