The man who bears the ultimate responsibility for the gassing of his countrymen in Syria has been told by the White House that the bell does not toll for him. The Americans are coming and people will die. But he will not be one of them. Not this time, anyway.

"I want to make clear that the options that we are considering are not about regime change," White House spokesman Jay Carney said Tuesday.

The Wall Street Journal notes that Bashar Assad can pick his leaker and major media source for inside information on just how the Americans will be conducting their attack on his country.

An American military attack on Syria could begin as early as Thursday and will involve three days of missile strikes, according to "senior U.S. officials" talking to NBC News. The Washington Post has the bombing at "no more than two days," though long-range bombers could "possibly" join the missiles. "Factors weighing into the timing of any action include a desire to get it done before the president leaves for Russia next week," reports CNN, citing a "senior administration official."

We are all familiar with the concept of "surgical strikes." This is more like scheduled surgery. Outpatient style. Assad may not even need to change his dinner plans.

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