SU expert calls Russian offer the perfect exit strategy for President Obama in Syria

William Smullen, National Security Studies, Syracuse University


he Director of National Security Studies at Syracuse University says Russia has offered President Obama "the perfect exit strategy" over the Syrian crisis.

William Smullen told CNY Central's Jim Kenyon that he "hope(s) the President will recognize that and talk about it tonight" when the he addresses the nation at 9pm.

Earlier, Syria said it has accepted Russia's proposal to place its chemical weapons under international control for subsequent dismantling.

Syria's main opposition bloc sees the Russian proposal as a maneuver to escape punishment for the use of chemical weapons, which killed hudnreds of people near Damascus. The rebel forces continue to urge the West to strike Syrian President Bashar Assad's regime, hoping to shift the war in their favor.

President Obama is seeking congressional approval for such a strike but Smullen says the nation has to consider the consequences of such an action. "This is a 'now what' moment" he said.

Smullen also says "moving and destroying chemical weapons is not easy." He says such an effort will take months if not years to accomplish.

Smullen says the U.S. could become involved in the conflict at a time when it faces a $17 trillion debt.

He pointed out there are some 2 million refugees who have been displaced by the war, half of whom are children.

While the images of dead and dying children due to a chemical attack are heart-wrenching, he says many more children are starving and dying in refugee camps.