Ryan Crocker: U.S. Needs Diplomatic Officers in Syria
The former ambassador says Syria is "the problem from hell."
As the civil war in Syria continues to wreak havoc on the country, President Barack Obama is facing political pressure to respond.
Crocker, who also served as ambassador in Pakistan, spoke out against the wide-spread use of drones.
"They are not a strategy. It isn't going to work for us if we say, 'Ok, it's drones everywhere, all the time.' It is one weapon, one tool that needs to be judiciously used in coordination with other countries involved. It can't substitute for an entire nuanced counter-terrorist strategy."
Drones were used during his time in Pakistan and he discussed the host country's knowlege of unmanned operations.
"Some of these decisions went all the way to President Musharraf. Sometimes he denied permission because of his concern that the adverse political or public reactions could be more harmful than the individual proposed for targeting."
Crocker's most recent job with the Foreign Service was in Afghanistan from 2011-2012.
Earlier this week, the New York Times published a report on Afghan President Hamid Karzai's office receiving bags of "ghost money" from the CIA.
Crocker declined to comment directly on the story, but did address the relationship between federal agencies operating overseas.
"In a well-managed embassy, there should be no surprises, no dual-track policies. The ambassador must be aware of everything that is going on because he or she has ultimate responsibility."
Crocker is speaking in Hartford on May 6 with the Connecticut World Affairs Council. You can find out more about the event here.