WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama is poised to become the first US leader in three decades to attack a foreign nation without broad international support or in direct defense of Americans.

Not since President Ronald Reagan ordered an invasion of the Caribbean island of Grenada in 1983 has the US been so alone in pursuing major lethal military action beyond a few attacks responding to strikes or threats against its citizens.

It’s a policy turnabout for Obama, a Democrat who took office promising to limit US military intervention.

But he has warned Syrian President Bashar Assad that use of chemical weapons in its two-year civil war would be a “red line” that would provoke a strong US response.

So far, only France has indicated it would join a US strike on Syria.

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