(Philadelphia Inquirer) As the White House mulls whether Syria has crossed President Obama’s red line and used chemical weapons, the U.S. military and intelligence community are quietly acknowledging that the United States does not know where many of those weapons are located.
The judgment comes from top U.S. military commanders and is supported by recent intelligence community assessments, according to three U.S. officials who work closely on Syrian intelligence matters. At the heart of the concern is that the Syrian military has transferred more and more of its stock of sarin and mustard gas from storage sites to trucks where they are being moved around the country.
While U.S. intelligence agencies first saw reports that Syria was moving the weapons last year, the process has accelerated since December, according to these officials.
Also worrisome, said two of the officials, is intelligence from late last year that says the Syrian Scientific Research Center—an entity responsible for Syria’s chemical-weapons stockpile—has begun to train irregular militias loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in how to use the chemical munitions.