“Syria welcomes the Russian proposal out of concern for the lives of the Syrian people, the security of our country and because it believes in the wisdom of the Russian leadership that seeks to avert American aggression against our people.”
So said Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Moallem after receiving diplomatic overtures from Moscow, which amount to this: turn over control of chemical weapons to international monitors and avoid a U.S. strike.
U.S. officials say they are taking a hard look at the Russian proposal, but are also expressing skepticism that Syria will truly act on it. Meanwhile Secretary of State John Kerry upped the ante by saying that Syria must turn over its weapons – which they have denied possessing – within one week.
Could the international imbroglio surrounding Syria be solved so simply? Even if a diplomatic solution prevails, it would still preserve the status quo in Syria, where 100,000 people have died and where Assad has allegedly used chemical weapons on his own people.