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President Obama sent to the Speaker of the House and the President of the Senate a letter on Aug. 31 with draft legislation that would authorize use of the US military "in connection with the conflict in Syria." The proposed legislation states:
"The President is authorized to use the Armed Forces of the United States 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 in order to -- (1) prevent or deter the use or proliferation (including the transfer to terrorist groups or other state or non-state actors) within, to or from Syria, of any weapons of mass destruction, including chemical or biological weapons or components of or materials used in such weapons; or (2) protect the United States and its allies and partners against the threat posed by such weapons." (Read the entire draft.)
President Obama said he would seek Congressional approval for US military action in Syria over the alleged use of chemical weapons. He specified that any military involvement would be of "limited duration and scope" and that "we would not put boots on the ground." (Read his remarks.) The Obama Administration released an unclassified summary of the attack in the Damascus suburbs on Aug. 21 killing at least 1,429 Syrians, including 426 children. (Read the assessment.)
Update: On Sept. 4, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved a resolution to "authorize the limited and tailored use of the US Armed Forces against Syria," which would limit such an action to 60 days and prohibit using American troops for ground combat. The Senate will begin voting on this resolution on Sept. 9, 2013.
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