White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer on Friday declined to say whether Donald Trump was still concerned about starting World War III by taking action against the Assad regime in Syria.
Throughout the campaign, Trump warned against the U.S. taking military action in Syria, arguing that America should never have gotten involved in the Middle East in the first place. In a lengthy Oct. 7, 2016 statement, then-candidate Trump warned that his rival, Hillary Clinton would “start a shooting war in Syria.”
“We’re spending $6 trillion dollars on wars in the Middle East, while our own country falls into total disrepair,” that statement read.” Now Hillary wants to start a shooting war in Syria, in conflict with a nuclear-armed Russia, which could lead to World War 3.”
Spicer was asked about Trump’s concern over starting World War III during an off-camera press briefing about the U.S. missile strike on Syrian airfields.
“During the campaign, Trump warned that action against the Assad regime could result or devolve into World War III. He talked about the risks of drawing in Russia and Iran into a broader conflict,” a reporter began. “Is the president at all concerned with that happening or the fact that, as U.S. planes fly over the Syrian skies, that they could run into interference from either Russian or Syrian defense systems.”
Spicer said the U.S. “acted appropriately” by striking Syrian airfields, adding the president has received “widespread praise from around the globe.”
“But is the not something he’s concerned about anymore?” the reporter pressed.
Spicer, once again, declined to answer, but repeated the strike has earned “universal praise for the president’s decisive action.”
Listen to the audio at PBS's Periscope.