"Secretary of State John Kerry said during a hearing Wednesday in the House of Representatives that counties in the Arab world have offered to foot the entire bill for a U.S. military mission that destroys the Bashar al-Assad regime in Syria.
'With respect to Arab countries offering to bear costs and to assist, the answer is profoundly yes,' Kerry said. 'They have. That offer is on the table.'.....
Florida Republican Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen had asked Kerry to comment on the expenses related to carrying out attacks on Syria if Congress were to authorize them.
Following through on a use-of-force resolution, she said, 'could potentially cost ... billions.'
But Kerry said other nations that see Assad as a destabilizing force in the region have proposed to cover the costs......
As for 'the details of the offer, and the proposal on the table,' Ros-Lehtinen asked Kerry, 'what are the figures we are talking about?
'We don’t know what action we [will be] engaged in right now,' Kerry replied, 'but they have been quite significant. I mean, very significant.'
'In fact, some of them have said that if the U.S. is prepared to go do the whole thing, the way we’ve done it previously in other places [As in Iraq??], they’ll carry that cost. That’s how dedicated they are to this.'....
Kerry quickly clarified that the Pentagon was not planning to shake a tin cup in the Middle East in the hope of collecting donations.
'Obviously, that is not in the cards and nobody is talking about it,' he said. 'But they are talking about taking seriously getting this job done.'
Kerry also closed the loop on an embarrassing episode from his Senate testimony on Tuesday, when he said he wouldn't rule out the use of ground troops if hostilities in Syria were to escalate.
'There will be no boots on the ground,' he said Wednesday.
'The president has said that again and again. And there is nothing in this authorization that should contemplate it. And, we reiterate, no boots on the ground.'....."