Stewart Stogel is a veteran print/broadcast journalist whose work has appeared in Time, Newsweek, the Miami Herald, Washington Times, ABC News and NBC News. Major stories broken include the death of legendary Alabama football coach Paul "Bear" Bryant, the beginning of the U.S. invasion of Iraq (Operation Desert Storm, 1991), and the failure of the U.S./UK military to find WMD in Iraq (March 2003).More ↓Less ↑
UNITED NATIONS – Former U.S./U.N. Ambassador and State Department negotiator John Bolton tells WND he expects the White House to launch its attack on Syria this weekend.
Bolton went on to suggest that such an attack could come late Saturday night or early Sunday morning.
“It simply scheduling,” Bolton told WND.
The ambassador was pointing to Obama’s plans to travel to Europe and Russia for the upcoming G20 Summit to be held in St. Petersburg in early September.
Meanwhile in New York, U.N. chief Ban Ki-Moon received his first personal briefing on the Syrian crisis from his disarmament chief Angela Kane, who had just returned from meeting Syrian government officials in Damascus.
Inside sources tell WND that Kane explained to Ban that Syria did in fact use chemical weapons but that a firm conclusion would await the assessment of the U.N. chemical weapons inspection team, which just left Syria on Saturday.
While no date has been released for that report, diplomats expect some informal preliminary to be submitted to U.N. headquarters next week.
Watching from the sidelines has been new U.S./U.N. Ambassador Samantha Power, who has said little since she returned from a vacation in Ireland. Power has remained in New York City over the holiday weekend “on standby,” say U.S. sources.
If a U.S. attack does come, it will fall upon Power to block any Russian/Chinese attempt to convene an emergency session of the U.N. Security Council to condemn the U.S. military campaign.
Also maintaining a close vigil is the Israeli/U.N. mission.
Ambassador Ron Prosor, known for his flamboyant diplomacy, has remained uncharacteristically silent.