Robin Simcox, a fellow with the Heritage Foundation, joined host Eric Shawn in lambasting Russian involvement in Syria, as well as President Obama’s failure to attack Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces earlier, during an appearance on Fox News Sunday evening.
“It is beyond comprehension that, in this day and age, a nation like Russia could just level a city, killing countless civilians with no consequences,” lamented Shawn, referring to Aleppo, where government forces, backed by Russian airstrikes, have launched a massive campaign to recapture the city.
The campaign in Aleppo has demonstrated “the utter brutality of Bashar al-Assad, the Syrian regime, and the utter immorality….the barbaric nature of the Russian support for the Assad regime,” Simcox claimed.
“General Petraus, former head of the CIA, the man who oversaw the surge in Iraq, had talked about no-fly zones, safe zones for civilians, the possibility of grounding Assad’s Air Force, providing more weapons to the rebels we are working with,” he added.
Shawn jumped immediately on the comment, claiming “we’ve should’ve gone after his helicopters a long time ago, some critics say. We should’ve bombed the runways to stop the barrel bombing a long time ago.”
Focusing his anger directly on Russian President Vladimir Putin, Shawn asked his guest “should he or Russian officials be tried, or put up at the International Criminal Court for war crimes?”
As the United States talks of breaking off ceasefire negotiations, mulls the possibility of directly attacking Syrian government forces, and threatens asymmetric attacks on Russia, the Russian government has warned the United States against taking direct action against the Syrian government.
“If the US launches a direct aggression against Damascus and the Syrian army, it will lead to terrible, tectonic shifts not only on the territory of this country but also in the region in general,” said Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova.
Secretary of State John Kerry has regularly expressed disappointment that President Obama has not used military force against Assad already.
“I’ve argued for the use of force. I’m the guy who stood up and announced that we’re going to attack Assad for the use of weapons,” he said in a leaked audio recording of a meeting with Syrian civilians.
While the mainstream media is quick to blame Russian air strikes and the Syrian government for the devastation in Aleppo, absolutely no blame is placed on the rebel forces for using civilians as human shields, nor has any blame been placed on the United States, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and the Gulf States for arming and funding the rebel forces to overthrow Assad in the first place.
Tensions between the United States and Russia over Syria threaten to spiral out of control, as Putin recently signed a decree suspending a 2010 agreement under which both countries previously agreed to destroy a significant amount of weapons-grade Plutonium.