Edward Djerejian was ambassador to Syria from 1989 to 1991. He is a longtime diplomat who has served under eight administrations and is the founding director of the Baker Institute at Rice University.
Djerejian was a guest on Houston Matters. He says during his time as ambassador to Syria it was well-known that the government was building a size-able chemical weapons arsenal.
"My view, my basic view is that there is no military solution to the Syrian crisis, there can only be a political solution."
Djerejian says whatever the United States does in terms of military action should be part of an overarching strategy to assist the rebel forces and bring political stability to Syria.
"And we should have been doing this, frankly, a year and a half ago. But that we should be contemplating giving them humanitarian, economic and military assistance to try to level the political military playing field so the regime and the opposition would then be in a situation where they could negotiate with one another on a more equal level."
Djerejian says in his opinion, the U.S. should help mediate a compromise between the Assad regime and rebel forces, which would prevent radical groups from taking over power in Syria while also loosening the tight control held by the dictator.