US Insists Russia Responsible for Syria Gas Attack

Pentagon Looking Into Idea Russia 'Participated' in Strike

With Russia complaining that the US launched an illegal attack against Syria on Thursday night, based on unproven allegations of them launching a gas attack against northwestern Idlib Province earlier in the week, US officials have shifted to trying to blame Russia for the incident.

The Pentagon has announced that they are carrying out an investigation into the putative gas attack, saying that they want to see if Russian warplanes “took part” in the attack. Russia has insisted that no such gas attack took place to begin with, and that a Syrian conventional strike hit a rebel warehouse full of chemicals.

US officials don’t seem to be too worried about anyone proving anything, however, with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson insisting in comments today that Russia “bears responsibility” for the attack because they played such a major role in the 2013 chemical disarmament on Syria.

This line of thinking probably isn’t going to get the Trump Administration very far, however, since the United States also played a major role in the disarmament under the auspices of the Organization for Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. Either way, trying to blame Russia at this point, still having not gotten a deal in place for an international investigation, and having launched an attack on Syria over what they alleged happened, is putting the cart before the horse.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.