(FOX NEWS) Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said Thursday the U.S. intelligence community believes the Syrian regime used the chemical weapon sarin, a revelation that immediately raised the question of whether a "red line" had been crossed in the country's civil war.
Hagel confirmed the intelligence assessment, which was detailed in a letter to select members of Congress, while speaking to reporters on a visit to Abu Dhabi. The administration swiftly released those letters, which said U.S. intelligence determined with varying degrees of confidence that "the Syrian regime has used chemical weapons on a small scale in Syria, specifically the chemical agent sarin."
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The White House stressed that this was not enough to confirm how the chemical was released and pressed the United Nations for a "comprehensive" investigation. President Obama has said the use of chemical weapons would be a "game-changer" in the U.S. position on intervening in the two-year-old Syrian civil war.