Kerry says lack of action on Syria would send dangerous signal to Iran

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Failure to take military action against Syria would send a dangerous signal to Iran, North Korea and other U.S. foes, Secretary of State John Kerry told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Tuesday.

“Iran is hoping you look the other way,” Kerry said.

“Our inaction would surely give them (Iran) a permission slip for them to at least misinterpret our intention, if not to put it to the test,” Kerry added.

Kerry said that the Lebanese militia group Hezbollah is “hoping that isolationism will prevail” and that “North Korea is hoping that ambivalence carries the day.”

“They are all listening for our silence,” Kerry said.

Seeking to dispel American people’s fears of another war, Kerry said that U.S. soldiers will not be deployed in Syria.

“Whatever prohibition clarifies it to Congress or the American people, there will not be American boots on the ground with respect to the civil war,” Kerry added, AFP reported.

He was speaking in front of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee together with Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey.

Hagel said several key allies in the region strongly support U.S. military action in Syria.

Hagel told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Tuesday that France, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates and others in the region are key partners in any U.S. action.

He said U.S. forces were ready to act whenever President Barack Obama gives the order.

(With AFP)