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Protesters face off on Syria outside White House

Demonstrators protest against a US attack on Syria in front of the White House in Washington, DC on August 31, 2013
Demonstrators protest during a rally against a possible US attack on Syria in front of the White House in Washington, DC on August 31, 2013. About 100 anti-war protesters and some 50 supporters of the Syrian opposition faced off outside the White House Sa

About 100 anti-war protesters and some 50 supporters of the Syrian opposition faced off outside the White House Saturday as President Barack Obama weighed a strike against the Damascus regime.

Police on horseback intervened to separate the two groups who for several minutes appeared on the verge of coming to blows.

"The situation in Syria is very complicated, and dropping bombs on that situation is not going to solve anything," said Lacy MacAuley wearing a "Hands off Syria" headband.

Demonstrators protest against a US attack on Syria in front of the White House in Washington, DC on August 31, 2013.
Demonstrators protest during a rally against a possible US attack on Syria in response to alleged use of chemical weapons by the Assad government, in front of the White House in Washington, DC on August 31, 2013.

"It's not going to make the Assad regime stop, it's not going to make the Free Syrian Army stop," added the 34-year-old.

"We have too many wars right now," said Andrew Jones, a 24-year-old student in a nod to Afghanistan.

"It's not our job," he added. "They're their own country, they're a sovereign nation and they don't want us. Plus both sides are terrible, we have no need to get in there."

For Yahya Abo, a 26-year-old dual Syrian and US citizen, a strike on Syria would lead to "a big war, like third World War" that would destabilize the Middle East.

The roughly 50 backers of the Syrian opposition meanwhile shouted slogans against President Bashar al-Assad, with one holding up a sign that compared him to Adolf Hitler.

If Obama intervened in Syria, "every day he would save at least 10,000 lives!" said 50-year-old Bassem Sahyouni.

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