Heard on the Hill

Inhofe Cites Oliver North on Syria Strategy

When Sen. James M. Inhofe appeared on Fox News this morning to criticize possible U.S. intervention in Syria, he cited a military expert best known for his ties to a scandal about an administration acting without congressional authorization.

The Oklahoma senator, who is the ranking Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, said he was on the conference call between senior lawmakers and top administration officials Wednesday evening about the reported use of chemical weapons by the Syrian regime.

Inhofe, who is opposing intervention without changes to the broader Pentagon budget, described the call as "an hour and a half of John Kerry trying to sell us on the president's program of military intervention in Syria."

But, when asked by Fox News about the risk of mission creep if the U.S. military launches targeted missile strikes without congressional authorization, Inhofe cited comments by Oliver North, who rose to national prominence in the Iran-Contra scandal of the 1980s.

"A lot of people are saying, well, you could do it clean, and go in and send a cruise missile in, and everything's going to be fine, and we won't get our hands dirty. That's not the way it works," Inhofe said. "On your program yesterday, Ollie North made it very clear that that would not work. You're going to get — if you have military ... intervention, you're going to get involved again. We can't afford to do that."

The interview appears below: