Clinton Rules Out U.S. Involvement in Syria, for Now

Secretary of state points out that crackdown in Syria has not yet engendered global condemnation or calls from the Arab League and others for a no-fly zone, as with Libya.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Sunday ruled out the United States getting involved in Syria in the same way as it has in Libya for now, saying in a TV interview that each Arab uprising was unique.

Speaking in an interview which was taped on Saturday, Clinton said the United Stated deplored the violence in Syria but the circumstances were different in Libya, where Libyan leader Colonel Muammar Gadhafi had used his air force as well as heavy armor against civilians.

Hillary Clinton AP 29.11.2010

Asked if one should expect a U.S. involvement in Syria along the lines of the no-fly zone that the United States and other nations have imposed over Libya, Clinton told CBS News' "Face the Nation with Bob Schieffer" program "no."

"Each of these situations is unique," she added in a transcript of the interview released by CBS. "Certainly we deplore the violence in Syria, we call as we have on all of these governments ... to be responding to their people's needs, not to engage in violence, permit peaceful protests and begin a process of economic and political reform."

Clinton suggested the circumstances in the two nations differed in that there was not the same level of violence in Syria and the government's crackdown on protests there had not yet engendered global condemnation or calls from the Arab League and others for a no-fly zone as there was with Libya.

"If there were a coalition of the international community, if there was the passage of a Security Council resolution, if there were a call by the Arab League, if there was a condemnation that was universal, but that is not going to happen because I don't think it is yet clear what will occur, what will unfold (in Syria)," Clinton said.

"What's been happening there the last few weeks is deeply concerning, but there's a difference between calling out aircraft and indiscriminately strafing and bombing your own cities (as in Libya), than police actions which frankly have exceeded the use of force that any of us would want to see," she added.