Valdosta Daily Times

State News

September 3, 2013

Kingston leaning toward ‘no’ on Syria

SAVANNAH — U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston says he’s leaning against taking military action against Syria, but says there are many questions yet to be answered before a final decision is made.

The Republican from Savannah made the comments during a media briefing on Monday in Savannah.

The congressman says he’s had limited feedback on Syria from his constituents in his district in southeast Georgia, but most are not in favor of getting involved, WSAV-TV reported.

“Right now I’m leaning no - but I want to find out how wide of a strike this would be and what would be the ramifications of it?,” he said.

“We know Russia and China will veto this if we go through the United Nations - but the question is - well, what are you going to do if we strike?,” Kingston added. “Because you know, are they going to sit there passively and say that’s OK? I don’t think that will be the case.”

The possibility of military action comes after Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime was blamed by the U.S. and the Syrian opposition for an Aug. 21 alleged chemical weapons attack in a rebel-held suburb of the Syrian capital of Damascus.

President Barack Obama said he has decided that the U.S. should take military action against Syria but is seeking congressional authorization for the use of force. A vote is expected after Congress returns to work Sept. 9.

Kingston says he’s glad the president is seeking congressional approval. WSAV reports that Kingston raised several questions while addressing the issue on Monday.

“We’re going to have a lot of questions and those questions are you know - what are the means of this?,” he said. “Are we going to do it from the sea or from the air only? Do we have any allies at all and will they be with us? And then do we have rebels who we will be coordinating with? What is mission accomplished? What’s the ultimate objective and how will we know what success is?”

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