On Monday, President Obama threatened military action against the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad if there was evidence that he had transported the country's arsenal of biological and chemical weapons. Obama's statement is seen as his most aggressive warning yet to Assad, and reflects a growing concern within the White House that Assad's weapons of mass destruction could fall into the hands of terrorists or other rogue groups. Obama said that the U.S. has "put together a range of contingency plans" to deal with such an event, and that the U.S. has "communicated in no uncertain terms with every player in the region that that's a red line for us." Obama also said hopes for resolving the 18-month conflict in a relatively peaceful manner had faded. "At this point," Obama said, "the likelihood of a soft landing seems pretty distant."
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