Originally published on Wed September 11, 2013 1:50 pm
When the U.S. invaded Iraq in 2003, one of the broader goals was to send a strong deterrent message to other dictators who might have weapons of mass destruction (even if Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein didn't).
Recent events in Syria show that President Bashar Assad didn't heed the warning. But Libya's Moammar Gadhafi did.
Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. We've told you about baguettes in France offered in vending machines and bars of gold in Abu Dhabi. Now we can report on a vending machine selling vodka in Ukraine. For a dollar, patrons could enjoy a shot in the town center of Melitopol, mixers also available - until the machine was discovered by authorities. Unlawfully produced vodka is widespread in Ukraine and the vodka vending machine - a converted coffee maker. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.
From the NPR Newscast: Jean Cochran rounds up the latest news about the crisis in Syria
Now that President Obama has made his case to the nation for holding Syrian President Bashar Assad responsible for a chemical weapons attack last month near Damascus, the next key moment in the quickly evolving crisis appears to be Thursday's meeting in Geneva between Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.
Diplomats continue to consider a Russian plan to get Syria to hand over its chemical weapons to international control. If nations can agree on the details, the plan could avert a U.S. strike against Syrian targets. But accounting for and destroying Syria's chemical arsenal is a complicated undertaking.