Sunday, March 11, 2012

U.S. deeply skeptical about Syria military options

(Reuters) - President Barack Obama's administration is exploring options to halt the bloodshed in Syria but is deeply skeptical of military intervention out of fear it could worsen the humanitarian crisis, according to a White House official.

In a briefing with a small group of reporters on Friday, the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, contrasted the situation in Syria with Libya, where a NATO campaign bolstered rebels who eventually toppled Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi last year.

There was a "very viable" military option in Libya that involved stopping the advance of Gaddafi's forces and creating civilian protection zones, but those conditions do not exist in Syria, the official said.

"In Syria, it's a much more difficult environment because you basically have regime security forces that are in many respects intermingled with the population," the White House official said. Read More