In the next day or so, the Obama administration will release a declassified report justifying military action in Syria, according to CBS News's Major Garrett. That report is meant as a precursor to any military options the president may decide to take against the country in retaliation for a devastating chemical weapons attack near Damascus last week. The report will concentrate on what the U.S. believes are Syrian violations of the Geneva Convention and the Chemical Weapons Convention.
Officially, American military intervention in Syria is still an "if," as evidenced by Press Secretary Jay Carney's repeated refusal at today's press briefing to "speculate" on what the president is considering at this time. But John Kerry's forceful speech on Syria today brought many to the conclusion that the "if" was now a "when." During that speech, Kerry promised the release of additional information pertaining to the U.S.'s stance that the existence of a chemical attack in Syria last week was "undeniable," and that the bulk of evidence suggested the Assad regime was behind it. Plus, the U.S. already has cruise missiles in range of the country, according to multiple reports. CBS's report, based on accounts of a Saturday meeting between Obama's top national security advisers, bolsters the case that the U.S. is preparing to choose a military course of action against Syria. And while that's not a certainty at this time, there is little out there to suggest otherwise. An anonymous official told CNN, for instance, that military action against Syria could happen as soon as mid-week, should the president go ahead an authorize it.