Without condoning the use of sarin on civilians by Bashar al-Assad, it is worth reflecting on the outrage it has provoked with every western leader lining up to bash Bashar and his Russian ally Vladimir Putin with the stick of self-righteousness on two counts: using chemical weapons and targeting civilians.
They should pause to think, like Sean Spicer, before climbing too high on their pedestals.
Britain, America and Germany all used chemical weapons in the First World War. All had stockpiles in the Second World War and, if Hitler had invaded Britain, plans were in place to fight the Germans on the beaches with mustard gas. The only reason neither side used them in battle was fear of reprisals.
America extensively used Agent Orange, that contains a deadly dioxin, in the Vietnam War to defoliate the jungles that hid the enemy. It caused death and health issues to thousands of civilians which lasted decades.
Which takes us to the second emotive point: the victims in Syria were civilians.
Assad denied his forces were responsible or that civilians were the target. They were, to use that euphemistic expression, collateral damage. There were quite a few of those during the Iraq War when indiscriminate bombs fell from 30,000 feet.
The dead of Dresden in February, 1945, were not collateral. They were targeted as part of the British planned terror bombing of civilians that was intended to demoralise the Germans, create a humanitarian crisis and bring the end of the war closer.
The cathedral city had little military significance but Allied aircraft – mainly British – dropped 2,400 tons of high explosives and 1,500 tons of incendiary bombs that caused a firestorm of apocalyptic proportions and killed up to 35,000 civilians. Adult corpses were shriveled to three feet in length. Children under three were vaporised.
Our political war leaders, like Assad, lied to the public about terror bombing in the Second World War. Lies these days are more difficult to hide because of saturation TV coverage.
But the message remains the same: war is hell, particularly if you are a civilian statistic of collateral damage. And whether death and destruction comes from chemical weapons, barrel bombs or firestorm doesn't make much difference.
(Picture shows the aftermath of Dresden. Photographs of the victims are too horrific to display).