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Sep 4, 2013 6:35 PM by Rachel Cole - rcole@kristv.com

Former War Planner Doubts Syria Resolution's Effectiveness

CORPUS CHRISTI - U.S. Senators have made revisions to a proposed resolution allowing President Obama to use military force against Syria for the use of chemical weapons.

In response, retired Pentagon war planner and current director of the USS Lexington, Rocco Montesano, tells us "The strategy looks pretty weak."

During his time with the Navy, Montesano worked as planner during the Persian Gulf War. He says that showcasing the nation's plans for an attack on Syria isn't a wise strategy.

"You don't broadcast what you're going to do, when you're going to do it. Obviously he doesn't care about his people because apparently he's already gassed his people," Montesano said.

He's referring to Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad, who's accused of killing more than 1,400 people in a sarin gas attack in Damascus.

Montesano says the U.S. approach is too detailed and essentially acts as a "save the date" for a strike. Which would lessen the impact of an attack.

"If you're the bad guy waiting for the strike to happen and they say no more than two days of strikes, then you sit in your bunker for two days," he added.

He says after his experience with Desert Storm in the '90's, even three months of bombing Saddam Hussein didn't send a message.

"The war didn't end.. he didn't give up, 100 hours after they rolled the ground troops the war was over," Montesano said.

However, one of the limitations put in place by the Senate resolution says there will be no U.S. boots on the ground. Plus, at this point there are no plans to seek a regime change.

"It sounds like the message that the President wants to send is that you cannot use chemical weapons, if you use chemical weapons they'll be some priced to be paid," Montesano said.

Regardless of which resolution is chosen, he says it seems the nation's interest in getting involved is simple. "The use of chemical weapons is just an international norm that we will not permit," Montesano said.

The current resolution also limits the time for a military strike to 60 days with a possible 30 day extension. Congress has not yet voted on whether or not the U.S. will strike a military attack on Syria.


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