Syria

Environment
4:41 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

Kentucky is Home to the Types of Chemical Weapons Allegedly Used in Syria

This is a side view of one of the igloos where chemical weapons are stored at the Bluegrass Army Depot in Richmond, KY.
Craig Williams

Richmond, Kentucky is the last site in the U.S. to continue storing the type of chemical weapons allegedly used in Syria.  The nerve agents Sarin and VX, banned worldwide, are housed at the Bluegrass Army Depot. 

Considered two of the world's most deadly chemical warfare agents, the stockpile is on schedule to be destroyed by 2023. 

One of the people overseeing the destruction is Craig Williams, the Chemical Weapons Project Director at the Kentucky Environmental Foundation.  He spoke to WKU Public Radio about the weapons stored at the Bluegrass Army Depot.

NPR News
5:15 pm
Sat September 14, 2013

Breaking Down Chemical Weapons, One Fact At A Time

A U.S. Marine carries a light flame-thrower while wearing experimental clothing designed to protect against atomic, biological and chemical warfare in 1960.
Keystone Getty Images

Originally published on Sat September 14, 2013 7:00 pm

Saturday, the U.S. and Russia announced an agreement on the destruction of Syria's chemical weapons. The country has a week to detail its chemical arsenal and has until the middle of 2014 to destroy its stockpile. The State Department has published a framework for the plan.

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NPR News
7:37 am
Sat September 14, 2013

U.S. And Russia Form A Plan On Syria's Chemical Weapons

Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov announced a plan to eliminate Syria's chemical weapons arsenal from Geneva on Saturday.
Larry Downing AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat September 14, 2013 12:06 pm

Secretary of State John Kerry and his Russian counterpart have reached a deal that calls for Syria to destroy all of its chemical weapons. The plan, which Kerry announced in a news conference with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Geneva on Saturday, gives Syria a week to detail its chemical arsenal.

"The world will now expect the Assad regime to live up to its public commitments," Kerry said. "And as I said at the outset of these negotiations, there can be no games, no room for avoidance, or anything less than full compliance by the Assad regime."

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Politics
11:09 am
Wed September 11, 2013

Rand Paul On Syria: 'I Think There's Evil On Both Sides'

Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky is a member of the Foreign Relations Committee.
U.S. Senate Photographic Studio Rand Paul

Originally published on Wed September 11, 2013 4:21 pm

Kentucky Republican Rand Paul is a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and one of Congress' leading skeptics of U.S. military strategy, including possible strikes on Syria. On Tuesday, he offered a detailed response to President Obama's speech about the Syrian crisis. Paul joins Michel Martin of Tell Me More to talk about his opposition to military action, and what the U.S. should do.

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NPR News
5:17 am
Wed September 11, 2013

Obama's Speech On Syria May Fail To Sway Doubters

President Obama addresses the nation in a live televised speech from the East Room of the White House on Tuesday.
Evan Vucci Pool/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed September 11, 2013 2:52 am

By scheduling his Syria address on Tuesday night, President Obama had initially intended to shape the course of events. Instead, events had already overtaken his speech.

He had planned to rally public support for military action against Syria, in hopes of winning over a reluctant Congress. As things turned out, he said Congress should postpone its voting — once expected to begin as early as Wednesday — to see whether a diplomatic deal could be worked out.

But Obama said he's keeping the military on alert, in case talks fall through.

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Special Programs
2:43 pm
Tue September 10, 2013

WKU Public Radio Airing NPR's Live Coverage of President Obama's Address to Nation

President Obama addresses the nation Tuesday evening.

President Obama is set to address the nation Tuesday evening about the ongoing conflict in Syria, and his efforts to get Congress to authorize a U.S. military strike following the Syrian government's use of chemical weapons.

WKU Public Radio will air NPR's live coverage of the President's speech, starting at 8 p.m central/ 9 eastern time.

You can also access our coverage through our online webstreaming, by clicking on the "Listen Live" button at the top of the page.

In other Syria-related news Tuesday:

NPR: Breakthrough? Syria Hints it Might Give Up Chemical Weapons

WKU Public Radio: Mitch McConnell to Vote "No" on U.S. Strike Against Syria

NY Times: U.S. and Allies to Work Through U.N. Path on Syria Chemical Weapons

Politics
9:35 am
Tue September 10, 2013

Sen. McConnell Will Vote Against Military Strike on Syria

Speaking on the floor of the U.S. Senate Tuesday morning, Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell announced he will not support the President's call for a U.S. military strike on Syria.

The Louisville Republican said President Obama has not put forth a "credible strategy" regarding Syria. McConnell added that he doesn't think a "limited strike would resolve the civil war in Syria or remove Assad from power."

The Senate Minority Leader said while the chemical weapons attacks in Syria were horrible they did not pose a direct security threat to the U.S. or its allies.

Up until Tuesday, the leading Senate Republican had not committed to a position on the President's call for force against the Syrian regime of Bashar al-Assad. His fellow Kentucky Republican, Rand Paul of Bowling Green, has been an outspoken opponent of U.S. intervention.

McConnell expressed concern during his Senate floor speech about the possible unintended consequence  of chemical weapons falling into the hands of Islamic extremists should the U.S. conduct the type of limited surgical military strike being proposed.

NPR News
9:19 am
Tue September 10, 2013

Obama's Toughest Audience: His Die-Hard Supporters

President Obama returns to the White House on Friday after the G-20 summit in Russia.
Evan Vucci AP

Originally published on Tue September 10, 2013 11:37 am

Brent Rosenberg was an early and enthusiastic Barack Obama supporter at a place and time when it mattered most: Iowa 2008, in the run-up to the first-in-the-nation presidential-nominating contest.

"I worked hard during the caucuses," said Rosenberg, a Des Moines lawyer and lifelong Democrat. "I led all my friends and relatives to him."

So it's with evident pain that he now speaks about the president, on the eve of Obama's speech on military action against Syria, with disappointment, if not regret.

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Politics
8:40 am
Tue September 10, 2013

Guthrie a "No" Vote on U.S. Military Strike Against Syria

Kentucky's 2nd District Congressman, Brett Guthrie, has announced he will oppose the President's call for a U.S. military strike in Syria.

Here's what the Bowling Green Republican said in a news release about how he came to his decision:

"I appreciate Administration officials briefing the House on this very important situation. However, none of the information shared with me today has convinced me that military action is necessary or appropriate to further our national security interests in Syria and the surrounding region.

“There is no doubt that the Middle East is ripe with conflict and that the chemical weapons attack against the Syrian people on August 21 was horrific. But I do not believe that a bombing campaign against the Assad regime would be appropriate, and may even further enflame regional tensions. As the last remaining superpower, the United States should act as a role model for these troubled nations and look for further diplomatic solutions.

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Politics
12:59 pm
Mon September 9, 2013

GOP Senator Alexander Opposes U.S. Strike on Syria

Lamar Alexander, R-TN
Credit alexander.senate.gov

Republican Sen. Lamar Alexander says he will oppose a measure authorizing U.S. military force against Syria.

The Tennessee lawmaker said on Monday that a strike carries too much risk and could set off a series of events leading to greater U.S. involvement in another long-term Mideast war. He warned about the uncertainty in agreeing to President Barack Obama's request for military intervention after last month's deadly chemical weapons attack.

Alexander was announcing his position at a speech in Nashville. The Associated Press obtained excerpts of his remarks.

The senator has participated by telephone in briefings with senior administration officials and spoke this past weekend with Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel.

Alexander's Tennessee colleague, Sen. Bob Corker, collaborated with Democratic Sen. Bob Menendez in writing the resolution authorizing U.S. force.

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