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NATO reporting an increasingly desperate Syrian regime has continued to fire scud type missiles.
Against its own people the NATO's secretary says this move proves the regime is nearing its -- The Syrian foreign minister denied that Syria has used guys -- called the reports untrue rumors in the meantime the United States and others.
Sending missile defense systems near Turkey's border with Syria.
As well as more than a thousand troops Michael Hamlin joins us now.
Director of research for the foreign policy program at the Brookings Institution Michael great to see you.
Is the use of these ballistic missiles.
You know -- scuds but the other kinds of missiles they're using cluster bombs reported today in the New York Times.
Does this suggest that they're getting desperate.
-- I like the town of skepticism you had earlier in your little tees on this package because.
Yes it does but it doesn't mean that collapses in minutes I mean this is a horrible weapon to use in this kind of a -- as you know.
The skies have an inaccuracy of several hundred meters so that means you combine that with a cluster munition or some other kind of war had that been -- you're gonna.
The killing a lot of innocent people on that sort of the obvious intent of these weapons there's no two ways around it.
In humanitarian terms in military terms it's just catastrophic and devastating on the other hand is it really mean that aside is about to lose.
I'm not so sure maybe he's just targeting whole populations that he thinks it turned against him especially Sunni populations because he realizes this is a fight.
To the bitter -- for survival and this could look a lot like you know the Bosnian war did twenty years ago.
Where this kind of horrific violence continues for two or three years and it probably not.
And it took a while out for Bill Clinton pulled the trigger and sent in troops look if this -- -- India's.
Cluster bombs in -- ballistics.
Will use chemical weapons.
I don't think he had any moral reason not to be honest and this is where I think that President Obama is.
Previous declaration that that would be a red line that aside better not cross would come into play.
Because whether or not present Obama would be happy -- made that commitment.
Should -- come to that I think he'd be obliged to do something and I think we essentially become the air force for the Syrian opposition I think that's how it would play out.
And then at that time at that point I think -- days are numbered much more much you know more quickly than.
May be the case right now so my guess is a side will not use the chemical weapons simply keep us out of the war not because of any moral scruples yet how strong an organized -- at the rebels.
They're not very organized they are increasingly strong but it's you know it's probably many -- and if not a couple hundred groups.
Of fighters and sure there are some that are more important than others in the navy yard dozen or two key figures in that opposition.
But I like the way you ask the question is it's definitely not an organized group we're trying hard to make them.
-- more organized and as you know there are these umbrella organizations that try to have them talk to each other and in terms of their tactics in terms of how they're fighting.
It's a lot of little battles all over the country and that makes it harder to bring this to an end.
-- if there's a security vacuum what if anything should the US to.
Yes the hardest question of -- I think we have to gradually step up support to the opposition tried to make them work better together.
And perhaps get them a little bit heavier weaponry.
Beyond that I'm afraid that this war will probably play out to some extent like the Bosnian war dead and -- Quite possibly and for another ugly year ahead and Michael O'Hanlon at the Brookings Institution.
Michael thanks very much Jonathan real.
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