Tony Blinken, Deputy Secretary of State, testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Thursday that the Obama Administration does not currently have a plan for stopping the civil turmoil terrorizing the Syrian people as a result of the Civil War.
“I’d like to understand what Plan B is,” Chairman Bob Corker told Blinken. “The mysterious Plan B that has been referred to since February, the Plan B that was supposed to be leveraged to get Russia to quit killing innocent people, that would get Assad to stop killing innocent people. Just explain to us the elements of Plan B.”
“Two things, Mr. Chairman. In the first instance, Plan B is the consequence of the failure as a result of Russia’s actions of Plan A,” Blinken said of the recent breakdown of the US-Russian brokered ceasefire. “What’s likely to happen now, if the agreement cannot be followed through on and Russia totally reneges on its commitments, which it appears to have done. This is going to be bad for everyone.”
“I want to hear about Plan B,” Corker reiterated. “I understand all the context here.”
“I think, sir, this is important because Russia has a profound incentive in trying to make this work,” Blinken continued. “It can’t win in Syria, it can only prevent Assad from losing. If this now gets to the point where the Civil War actually celebrates, all of the outside patrons will throw in more and more weaponry…”
Corker then interrupted Blinken a second time.
“All of us understand that,” he stated. “What is Plan B? Give me the elements of Plan B.”
“Two things, again. The consequences I think to Russia as well as to the regime will begin to be felt as a result of Plan A not being implemented,” Blinken reiterated. “Second, as I indicated the President has asked all of the agencies to put forward options, some familiar, some new, that we are very actively reviewing.”
“When we are able to work through those in the days ahead, we will be able to come back and talk about them,” he admitted.
“Let me just say what we already know,” Corker said in closing. “There is no Plan B.”