If the US offer to help destroy Syria's chemical weapons is accepted, a ship being retrofitted with portable decontamination units in Virginia will be sent to do the job. 'Nothing will be dumped at sea,' a Pentagon official said.
Preparing the invitation list to next month's peace conference on Syria is a ticklish matter for the UN's special envoy. Both Iran and Saudi Arabia are influential, on opposite sides, in Syria's civil war. But the US has conditions for including Tehran.
Syrian government airstrikes on rebel-held areas in the north on Saturday killed at least 44 people. And Al Qaeda-linked fighters ousted government troops from the al-Omar oil field during an overnight battle.
In a major foreign policy speech to boost his stature for 2016, Sen. Marco Rubio warned against isolationism and an over reliance on force. Instead he spoke of 'decisive diplomacy' to achieve US global aims.