Appearing on CNN’s ‘Situation Room’ last week, Georgia Senator Saxby Chambliss stated that “The United States has never stood by and seen innocent people slaughtered to the extent that’s happening in Syria,” Chambliss said. “The United States does not need to be the world’s policemen, but the United States does need to step in when tyrants like this, really, in a very militant way, kill innocent people on a regular basis.”
The comment stems from a Washington report that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad had used chemical weapons against rebels fighting against his regime. The nonpartisan group PolitiFact looked into Chambliss’ statement, and found it to be patently false.
A spokeswoman for Chambliss said the senator was referring to “tragedies like Bosnia, where the United States had full knowledge of the abuses occurring, and had the ability and resources to intervene. The United States now has confirmation that Assad used chemical weapons on his own people, and so appropriate action must be taken.”
However, PolitiFact found a dozen global conflicts in which the US had intelligence about mass killings and chose not to intervene. In fact, University of Hawaii political scientist R.J. Rummel lists no fewer than 219 cases between 1900 and 1987.
Read more from PolitiFact here.