Russian President Vladimir Putin wrote an op-ed published late Wednesday in The New York Times where he strongly challenged President Barack Obama and the American public against a military strike against Syria, a longtime ally of Russia, warning of the likelihood of exacerbating the Mideast conflict to beyond the Syrian border and undermining the authority of the United Nations Security Council.
In his remarks, Putin called upon Americans to exercise "caution" when dealing with Syria, advocating for talks instead of military action.
"The potential strike by the United States against Syria, despite strong opposition from many countries and major political and religious leaders, including the pope, will result in more innocent victims and escalation, potentially spreading the conflict far beyond Syria's borders," wrote Putin. "A strike would increase violence and unleash a new wave of terrorism. It could undermine multilateral efforts to resolve the Iranian nuclear problem and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and further destabilize the Middle East and North Africa. It could throw the entire system of international law and order out of balance."