Syria arms offer: Game changer or morass?

  • 9 September 2013
  • From the section US & Canada
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US Secretary of State John Kerry speaks during a press conference with Britain's Foreign Secretary William Hague, (not pictured) at the the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on 9 September 2013 Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Mr Kerry also suggested Syria should destroy its chemical weapons, then appeared to dismiss the idea

The proposal to destroy Syria's chemical weapons could be a one-day wonder, but it could also be a game changer.

It could get President Barack Obama off the hook as he looks down the barrel of a likely defeat in Congress.

Or it could leave him in a worse morass than before if the offer is accepted but Bashar al-Assad plays games with weapons inspectors.

The ghost of Iraq still hovers over this conflict.

It is also difficult to say at the moment if the quick succession of Secretary of State John Kerry's musings, the Russian offer, UN encouragement and apparent Syrian acceptance are careful choreography or not.

The White House briefing, which happens soon, will be very important. Watch this space.