McCain: Lack of US leadership threatens Syria’s democratic opposition

“The resignation of Sheikh Moaz today must be seen in this broader context: It represents a failure of American leadership, which is only further weakening what is left of Syria's responsible, democratic opposition,” McCain said Sunday. “The international community, and the United States in particular, bears some responsibility for today's setback.”

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McCain has been critical of the Obama administration for not being more supportive of the Democratic uprising of the Syrian people against their President Bashar Assad, who had been killing those protesting against his government.

McCain says that if the United States remains on the sidelines that radical Islamic groups could take over Syrian opposition efforts rather than “responsible” moderates who don’t hate America.

“The moderate Syrian opposition is in a race against time to survive the radicalization of the conflict in Syria,” McCain said. “Radicals and terrorists are emerging as the power on the ground in Syria because they are proving themselves relevant to people's lives. They are delivering humanitarian and medical assistance, and they are increasingly leading the resistance to Assad with the best fighters. 

“If the United States remains on the sidelines of this conflict, the Syrian revolution will be hijacked by al Qaeda, and anti-American radicals will inherit post-Assad Syria.”

McCain says it’s in U.S.'s interests to ensure Syria in not controlled by radicals, partially because a radical Syria would threaten the safety of U.S. ally Israel.

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