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September 9th, 2013
05:58 PM ET

Syrian opposition spokesman: Obama should strike no matter what; U.S. intervention would end war in Syria

Lawmakers and Americans are reluctant to get involved in Syria. One concern, among many, is the uncertainty of what comes after a U.S. strike against Syria.

A representative for the Syrian opposition said President Bashar al-Assad has lost control of more than 60% of Syria, and the country is already in chaos.

"This strike, I think, is going to lead to the end of this war," said Najib Ghadbian, Syrian coalition special representative to the U.S.

Ghadbian outlined the political aftermath of a U.S. intervention, saying there will be a transition plan coordinated between "the core friends of Syria," the Free Syrian Army, and the coalition to ensure "there is no void, there is no vacuum."

The transition may need the help of the international community and peacekeeping forces, "but it's the U.S. intervention that will end this war," Ghadbian said.

Even if Congress does not authorize U.S. intervention, Ghadbian said President Barack Obama should order a military strike.

"But it would make a lot of sense for Congress to support the president," he added. "This is not the time to get into domestic ... fighting over a lot of issues. This is the time for Congress to show unity behind the president on a cause which serves U.S. national interests and in fact, does correspond to U.S. values."

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad was asked in an interview with CBS's Charlie Rose how he feels about being called a "butcher," and killing his own people.

"When you have a doctor who cut the leg to prevent the patient from the gangrene, if you have, you don't call him a butcher; you call him a doctor, and you thank him for saving the lives," Assad said.

The gangrene in that metaphor is the Syrian rebellion, and the rebels are men that Assad has described as terrorists.

"There are some bad apples among the rebels," said Ghadbian.

"The estimate by the Free Syrian Army: less than 6% of those fighters, 160,000, are extremists. Extremists that espouse the kind of ideology we don't subscribe to," said Ghadbian.

Secretary of State John Kerry proposed Thursday that – hypothetically – if Assad were to give his chemical weapons to the international community, he may avoid a military strike.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov responded, saying that his country will urge Syria to put its chemical weapons supply under international control if doing so would avert U.S. military action.

Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Moallem said his country welcomes Russia's proposal, but it was not immediately clear whether Syria would accept the plan.

"Only when this administration threatened the credible use of force, they started to talk sense. Before that, they did not believe in a political solution," said Ghadbian.

Ghadbian said neither the Syrian regime, nor Russia can be trusted, and that the regime is simply buying more time. Any political solution should hold those who used chemical weapons accountable, and should include a political settlement that would lead to democratic transition like Geneva espouses, he added.

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