By Jeremy Herb - 07/23/12 08:03 PM EDT
President Obama warned the regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad that it will be “held accountable” if it uses its stockpile of chemical weapons.
“The world is watching and they will be held accountable if they make the tragic mistake of using those weapons," Obama said, speaking at a speech at the Veterans of Foreign Wars convention Monday.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said this weekend that Syria’s chemical weapons have become Israel’s primary concern in Syria, and hawks in Congress have called on the Obama administration to get more involved to ensure the weapons don’t fall into the wrong hands.
The Pentagon also warned Syria not to think “one iota” about using the weapons, and Pentagon spokesman George Little said the Assad regime has received the message “through other channels” as well.
Obama said that the administration would continue to work with its friends and allies in the Syrian opposition to help the day come with the Syrian people have a government that “respects basic rights to live in peace, freedom and dignity.”