United States Ready to Arm Syrian Rebels

The White House is convinced President Assad used chemical weapons against his own people.
2:48 | 06/14/13

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Transcript for United States Ready to Arm Syrian Rebels
We'll move on to the major headline involving syria and word that the u.S. Is now ready to arm the rebels. Convinced that president assad used chemical weapons against his own people. Tonight our team tackling the big questions. Just what kind of weapons are we giving? Who are we giving them to? And what does this mean for america after the wars in iraq and afghanistan? Is syria now next? We have team coverage beginning with alex marquardt, on the syrian border. He leads us off. Reporter: It has not been an even fight. For two years, president assad's army inflicting untold death and destruction, pounding away with tanks and heavy artillery. While the rebels respond with mortars and rocket-propelled grenades. The regime's jets streak across the sky. As the rebels try to take them down with weapons they've stolen. Some rebel groups are well equipped, while many are desperate for ammunition and resort to home-made weapons like this giant slingshot. We've seen the sparse rebel arsenal first hand. The regime has tanks, planes, helicopters and you just have AK-47s AND RPGs. How can you defeat them in aleppo? "We have god almighty," he said, "who is fighting with us." Reporter: America now says it will send weapons to the rebels, small arms, not the rockets needed to take out tanks or planes. Tonight, we met a rebel leader who said, that's not enough. The weapons won't be good enough for us to win, he said. I'm afraid they'll just make the war go on longer. Reporter: The obama administration has been hesitant to offer bigger weapons, knowing how disorganized the rebel forces and recognizing that some of the strongest among them have sworn allegiance to al qaeda. The fear being some of these weapons could fall into the wrong hands. I want to bring in abc's martha raddatz. We were all talking earlier abfears across this country that this could be a slippery slope, that this could be another war we're headed into. Well, the white house has said emphatically, no boots on the ground in syria. But I do think many americans worry about that slippery slope. We were at war in iraq for nearly ten years, although we were told it would be over in no time. And we are still in afghanistan after nearly 12 years. We have learned lessons from those conflicts and no one likes to see such horrible, horrible slter in syria, but there are many military officers I've spoken to who are concerned about the goal in syria, with the small arms, and even more concerned, david, about what happens next if they don't do any good?

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