Congressional Correspondent
Patricia's Feed
Sep 3, 2013

Influential U.S. pro-Israel lobby group backs action in Syria

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The influential pro-Israel lobby group AIPAC urged U.S. lawmakers on Tuesday to approve a resolution allowing the Obama administration to retaliate for chemical weapons use in Syria.

“AIPAC urges Congress to grant the president the authority he has requested to protect America’s national security interests and dissuade the Syrian regime’s further use of unconventional weapons,” AIPAC said in a letter to members of Congress obtained by Reuters.

Sep 3, 2013

Kerry says Syria authorization should not preclude ‘boots on the ground’

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Secretary of State John Kerry said on Tuesday that a resolution in Congress on the use of military force in Syria should not remove the option of using U.S. ground troops, although he stressed there was “no intention” of inserting American soldiers into Syria’s civil war.

At the first public hearing in Congress on potential military action in Syria, Kerry said “it would be preferable” not to preclude the use of ground troops to preserve President Barack Obama’s options if there was a potential threat of chemical weapons falling into the hands of extremists.

Sep 2, 2013

Obama authorization for Syria too broad for some lawmakers

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. lawmakers began work on Monday on their version of an authorization of the use of military force in Syria, worrying that President Barack Obama’s draft could open the door to possible use of ground troops or eventual attacks on other countries.

Obama’s proposal, released on Saturday by the White House, authorizes the president to use the armed forces “as he determines to be necessary and appropriate in connection with the use of chemical weapons or other weapons of mass destruction in the conflict in Syria.”

Sep 1, 2013

Obama and aides confront skeptical Congress on Syria strike

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama and his top aides launched a full-scale political offensive on Sunday to persuade a skeptical Congress to approve a military strike against Syria, but faced an uphill struggle to win over many lawmakers and a war-weary American public.

Obama made a series of calls to members of the House of Representatives and Senate, with more scheduled for Monday, underscoring the task confronting the administration before it can go ahead with using force in response to a deadly chemical attack blamed on the Syrian government.

Sep 1, 2013

Military action in Syria faces uncertain fate in U.S. Congress

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Congress has resolved almost nothing of consequence since 2010, failing to complete what were once basic responsibilities for roads, schools, farms and the U.S. mail.

Asking the Republican-controlled House of Representatives and the Democratic-led Senate to agree on military action – already a controversial issue both within and between the parties – injects a new dose of uncertainty into Washington’s reaction to the Syria crisis.

Sep 1, 2013

Analysis: Military action in Syria faces uncertain fate in Congress

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Congress has resolved almost nothing of consequence since 2010, failing to complete what were once basic responsibilities for roads, schools, farms and the U.S. mail.

Asking the Republican-controlled House of Representatives and the Democratic-led Senate to agree on military action – already a controversial issue both within and between the parties – injects a new dose of uncertainty into Washington’s reaction to the Syria crisis.

Sep 1, 2013

Analysis – Military action in Syria faces uncertain fate in U.S. Congress

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Congress has resolved almost nothing of consequence since 2010, failing to complete what were once basic responsibilities for roads, schools, farms and the U.S. mail.

Asking the Republican-controlled House of Representatives and the Democratic-led Senate to agree on military action – already a controversial issue both within and between the parties – injects a new dose of uncertainty into Washington’s reaction to the Syria crisis.

Aug 30, 2013

White House gives Congress new evidence of chemical arms use in Syria

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Obama administration on Thursday gave American lawmakers what it called fresh evidence that Syria’s government was behind a chemical weapons attack, but faced strong resistance to military action from both U.S. political parties and a stinging rejection from Britain, a key ally.

During a conference call at the end of a difficult day for the White House, U.S. officials told members of Congress there was “no doubt” that chemical weapons were used in Syria last week. Obama aides cited intercepted communications of Syrian officials and evidence of movements by Syria’s military around Damascus before the attack that killed more than 300 people, said U.S. Representative Eliot Engel, the top Democrat on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

Aug 30, 2013

U.S. officials say ‘no doubt’ on Syrian chemical weapons: congressman

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Obama administration officials told lawmakers on Thursday that they have “no doubt” chemical weapons were used in Syria and that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s government had used them, U.S. Representative Eliot Engel, who participated in the call, told Reuters.

The senior administration officials cited evidence including “intercepted communications from high-level Syrian officials” on a conference call with lawmakers, said Engel, the top Democrat on the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee.

Aug 29, 2013

U.S. Officials say ‘no smoking gun’ implicating Assad in chemical attack

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. and its allies have “no smoking gun” proving Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad personally ordered his forces to use chemical weapons to attack a rebel-held Damascus neighborhood, U.S. national security officials said on Thursday.

In secret intelligence assessments and a still-unreleased report summarizing U.S. intelligence on the alleged gas attack on August 21, U.S. agencies express high confidence that Syrian government forces carried out the attack, and that Assad’s government therefore bears responsibility, the officials said.

    • About Patricia

      "Patricia Zengerle covers foreign policy and national security on Capitol Hill for Reuters. She recently covered the 2012 campaign and the White House and had been an editor in Washington, D.C., an editor in London, and a correspondent in Miami, Pittsburgh and New York. You can follow her on Twitter @ReutersZengerle"
    • More from Patricia

    • Contact Patricia

    • Follow Patricia