1. Calm Before the Storm

    U.S. Prepares to Act on Syria

    An image grab taken from a video shows an opposition fighter firing an rocket propelled grenade (RPG) on August 26, 2013 during clashes with regime forces over the strategic area of Khanasser, situated on the only road linking Aleppo to central Syria. Rebels had in recent days captured several villages in Aleppo province, much of which is already in the hands of anti-regime fighters, before taking Khanasser, situated on the highway to Hama in central Syria, thus cutting the army's only supply route to the northern province. AFP PHOTO / SALAH AL-ASHKAR        (Photo credit should read SALAH AL-ASHKAR/AFP/Getty Images)

    Salah Al-Ashkar/AFP/Getty

    A deluge of previously undisclosed evidence has led U.S. officials to believe that the Syrian government did indeed use chemical weapons against its own people, prompting French, British, and American officials to talk on Tuesday about coordinating a response to the alleged attacks. Satellite images and intercepted communications reinforced the conclusion that the Syrian government attacked. Tuesday’s talks mark a sharp departure from the U.S. and its allies’ position as late as Friday, when United Nations inspectors were still asking Syria for permission to inspect the areas of the alleged attacks. On Sunday however, the U.S. urged the United Nations to pull the inspectors out of Syria, setting the stage for a potential miilitary response, according to officials.

    Read it at Wall Street Journal