Roberts: Get Congressional Approval On Any Military Strike

By: Ralph Hipp, 13 News
By: Ralph Hipp, 13 News

(From WIBW) -- President Obama said Wednesday no decision has been made on a potential military missile strike in retaliation for Syria's "conclusive" chemical weapons attack against its own people.

Senator Pat Roberts told 13 News the President "should get Congressional approval" before doing that.

A strike appears imminent, even before Congressional members return from their August recess. Roberts said the quick action would "be a mistake, even though the President has to act."

Roberts urged the President to ask Congress first, then make his case for a strike to the American people. The veteran Senator said the situation is certainly nothing new, that even two years ago, the White House made its case for retaliation with any crossing of the red line by using poison gas or chemical weapons against protesting Syrians. He praised Secretary of State John Kerry for being "very declarative" on the country's intentions.

"If you back off and don't do anything, that sends the wrong message to radical Islam elements that you're weak. I also worry about the situation of who you're working with. Two years ago, new political leaders emerged. Now you've got two Al Qaeda groups fighting with each other in that mix. You should be careful who you ask for."

Roberts also encouraged the White House and Pentagon to make its case to Americans on which kind of military strategy would work in Syria. The Senator says in his travels back home this month, he's heard Kansans say they do not want the U.S. to get involved in Syria, and especially don't want any boots on the ground.

"The President is in a pickle. We're in a pickle. They've got Russia and Iran. We've got Saudi Arabia, Britain and France in a coalition of the willing."

But with Bashar al-Assad in the driver's seat, Roberts said the U.S. can't launch a military strike, just to say we conducted a military strike.

"It has to mean something."

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