Washington DCHouse Armed Services Committee Ranking Member Congressman Adam Smith released the following statement today in response to reports that the Assad regime used chemical weapons in Syria:

“Based on the intelligence that we have, it appears that the Assad regime has used chemical weapons against the Syrian people.  If true, this is a sad and worrisome development in an ongoing humanitarian crisis. We must work with our partners in the region and the international community to confirm beyond a doubt that chemical weapons were in fact used and, if so, determine who used them and when. The seriousness of the situation dictates a thorough and thoughtful approach. 

“If it turns out that chemical weapons were used, it would be the latest atrocity committed by the Assad regime. The civil war in Syria is an enormous humanitarian catastrophe caused by a brutal and desperate regime. But as we consider option to respond to this atrocity, I am not convinced that military action is appropriate at this time. There is no evidence that U.S. military action will achieve anything, except cost American lives and treasure. As we respond, we must remember the lessons we have learned from the war in Iraq.

“We should work with the international community, as well as our allies in the region, to consider the best options to remove Assad from power and promote a regime that has the support of the Syrian people. However, we should be under no illusions that this will be easy. It won’t. We must exercise extreme caution, and we must not assume that the U.S. military can resolve this civil war.

“The Syrian people deserve the right to live free of tyranny and oppression and the United States must continue to be a force for good in the world. I encourage the Administration to take the time necessary to confirm what has taken place and to develop an appropriate response.”

 

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Date Title
2/9/16 Ranking Member Smith Statement on Defense Budget Proposal
2/2/16 Ranking Member Smith Statement on Afghanistan Hearing
Date Title
1/22/16 Ranking Member Smith Statement on Terror Attacks in Burkina Faso and Somalia
1/14/16 Ranking Member Smith Statement on Nomination of General Joseph Votel
1/7/16 Ranking Member Smith Statement at Hearing Discussing Acquisition Reform
1/6/16 Ranking Member Smith Statement on North Korea
Date Title
12/10/15 Ranking Member Smith and Ranking Member Speier Statement on Release of Oversight and Investigations Report
12/1/15 Ranking Member Smith Statement at Hearing Examining U.S. Strategy for Syria and Iraq
Date Title
11/25/15 Ranking Member Smith Statement on President Signing 2016 National Defense Authorization Act
11/25/15 Chairman Thornberry and Ranking Member Smith Statement on Kunduz Investigation
11/23/15 Ranking Member Adam Smith Statement on Terrorist Attacks in Mali
11/18/15 Ranking Member Adam Smith Statement on Syrian Refugee Bill Offered by Chairman McCaul
11/18/15 Ranking Member Adam Smith Statement for Hearing on Iraq and Syria
11/17/15 Ranking Member Adam Smith Statement on OPM/DHS/OMB Decision Not To Testify Before HASC
11/13/15 Ranking Member Adam Smith Statement on Terrorist Attacks in Paris
11/5/15 Ranking Member Adam Smith Statement on Passage of NDAA
Date Title
10/30/15 Ranking Member Adam Smith Statement on President’s Announcement of Special Operations Deployment in Syria
10/27/15 Ranking Member Smith Statement at Hearing Examining Shortening the Defense Acquisition Cycle
10/22/15 Ranking Member Smith Statement on NDAA Veto
10/21/15 Ranking Member Smith Statement for DOD Security Cooperation Hearing
10/16/15 Ranking Member Adam Smith Statement on the President’s Announcement Regarding Troop Levels in Afghanistan
Date Title
9/30/15 Ranking Member Adam Smith on Pending Defense Bill Veto
9/30/15 Ranking Member Adam Smith on McCarthy’s Benghazi Comments
9/29/15 Ranking Member Adam Smith on NDAA Conference Report
9/29/15 Ranking Member Smith Statement for Cyber Hearing