WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Idaho Senator Jim Risch is now speaking out in response to the latest unrest in Syria, warning that Americans are war weary, and may be hesitant to enter another fight.
Risch's comments were in response to the allegations that Syria is using chemical weapons on its own people. He spoke on Fox News Sunday morning, just a few hours before a bold assassination attempt on the Syrian Prime Minister.
Syrian Prime Minister Wael Nader Al-Halqi escaped an assassination attempt after a bomb exploded near his convoy in the capital city of Damascus Monday morning. He was reportedly uninjured in the attack.
Amateur video from the scene shows the aftermath of the bombing. Here, a Syrian government official reports that an IED was placed under a parked car on the street and detonated as the prime minister's convoy rode by.
There are varying reports of exactly how many were hurt in Monday's attack. A Syrian website is reporting that six were killed and 15 injured.
The attack highlights the string of violence that has struck Syria in recent weeks, including evidence that Syria's government may have used chemical weapons on its own people.
U.S. lawmakers, including Senator Risch, are growing concerned about how quickly chemical weapons could be distributed and secured by nearby rebel factions and terrorist groups like Al Quaeda.
Risch says the fact that Syria has chemical weapons isn't news, and added that Americans should be aware that President Obama and other intelligence leaders have known about them for at least a month.
There are physiological tests that show they have used these chemicals, Risch said on Fox News Sunday morning. It's not widespread at this point, but the question is, 'where is that red line?'
Risch serves on the congressional Select Intelligence Committee. When asked what the country's response to the threat should be, he said there's no clear answer yet on exactly what America should do in this situation.
American people are war weary, Risch said. To go out and try to sell this to the American people -- that we should put boots on the ground -- is going to be very difficult for the president.
However, because of the perceived danger of chemical weapons, the pressure is building from many on Capitol Hill to act soon.
President Obama has said Syria's use of chemical weapons would be a game-changer. Now, many are wondering exactly how the game will change, and what it means for our troops in the region.
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