Reuters reports: President Barack Obama’s national security team is trying to make the case to sceptical U.S. lawmakers for a limited strike against the Syrian government over its alleged use of chemical weapons on August 21.
Following are details of missile strikes and other limited military action taken by the United States over the past 30 years and what transpired afterwards:
* Lebanon 1983 – In September 1983, U.S. battleships anchored in the Mediterranean Sea off Lebanon shelled Syrian, Palestinian and Druze forces in the Shouf Mountains outside Beirut in support of the Lebanese army, during the complex civil war that began in 1975.
It was one of several actions that created a perception that the United States was taking sides in the war. A month later, Shi’ite Muslim suicide bombers blew up the U.S. Marine and French barracks in Beirut, killing 241 Marines and 58 French paratroopers. President Ronald Reagan pulled U.S. forces out of Lebanon in February 1984. Lebanon’s civil war raged on until 1990.
* Libya 1986 – U.S. bomber aircraft struck sites in the Libyan cities of Tripoli and Benghazi, 10 days after the deadly bombing of West Berlin’s LaBelle nightclub frequented by American soldiers, which Washington blamed on Libya. Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi’s adopted daughter was alleged to have been killed, and his sons were reported injured.
Libya was not linked to another major terrorist attack until the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, which killed 259 passengers and crew and 11 people on the ground. Libyan Abdel Basset al-Megrahi, who denied involvement in downing the jet, was convicted of the bombing in a court in the Netherlands 2001. Gaddafi ruled Libya until his ouster in August 2011. [Continue reading…]