Sept. 4 (Bloomberg) -- Beyond a reasonable doubt, the
forces of Syria’s Bashar al-Assad used chemical weapons on a
large scale and should be punished. That’s where I end up. But
the case isn’t cut and dried.
Sometimes, standing on principle doesn’t get you very far.
The problem is, which principle? The norm forbidding use of
chemical weapons, the norm of restraint in use of military force
and the norm of upholding international law are in conflict. In
addition, predicting the results of action (or inaction) is a
matter of weighing probabilities, not certainties.