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September 6, 2013
CONTACT: K.E. Schwab

SRU hosts 'Crisis in Syria' roundtable

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. -With the U.S. Congress embroiled in a debate about America's response to issues in war-torn Syria, Slippery Rock University will host a "Crisis in Syria: Chemical Weapons and International Response" faculty-led roundtable at 6:30 p.m., Sept. 11.

The session will be in 111 Strain Behavioral Science Building.

George Brown, professor of political science, is organizing the event as a way of engaging the campus in the national debate.

"On Aug. 21, the Syrian government is alleged to have used chemical weapons, specifically sarin gas, in an attack against civilians in two rebel-controlled suburbs of Damascus, the capital of Syria. U.S. intelligence reports that the attack killed as many as 1,429 people, including 426 children," Brown said.

The roundtable will include discussion of those issues while providing background on the civil war in Syria. Additional topics for the discussion will be evidence of the chemical weapons attack; the legal basis for retaliation under international law; the moral case for retaliation; the role of the United Nations and international repercussions; and domestic political decisions, including those made by Congress, the president, and allowed by the War Powers Act and public opinion.

SRU's political science and history departments and the Center for Middle Eastern Studies are sponsoring the event.

Slippery Rock University is Pennsylvania's premier public residential university. Slippery Rock University provides students with a comprehensive learning experience that intentionally combines academic instruction with enhanced educational and learning opportunities that make a positive difference in their lives.