Despite claims from Russia that this attack on Syrians was a “false flag,” Secretary of State Rex Tillerson confirmed that the attack did occur and placed the blame at the feet of the Syrian leader. Tillerson is scheduled to visit Moscow to speak with the Russian government April 12.
Speaking to the White House press corps Thursday en route to Mar-a-Lago, Trump told reporters that “something should happen” to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
“I think what Assad did is terrible. I think what happened in Syria is one of the truly egregious crimes. It shouldn’t have happened. It shouldn’t be allowed to happen,” Trump said. “I think what happened in Syria is a disgrace to humanity. He’s there, and I guess he’s running things, so something should happen.”
Thursday night, MSNBC reported that a United States Navy boat fired Tomahawk cruise missiles into Homs, Syria aimed specifically at aircraft and buildings that are believed to be behind the attack earlier this week. CNN reported that the targets were the refueling wings and aircraft.
Two U.S. military officials told Matthew Cole at The Intercept Thursday that this plan would “overwhelm Russian air defense systems used by the Syrian military.” Putin’s government is currently in Syria helping to maintain their air defense sites.
The officials said that the proposal “would likely result in Russian military deaths and mark a drastic escalation of U.S. force in Syria.” They further anticipated this mission would likely kill Russians as well as Syrian military.
CNN’s Pentagon correspondent Barbara Starr reported that the Trump administration did call Russia to inform them of the pending airstrike. However, Starr said that it was believed that Russians were killed in the bombing.
In 2013, Trump attacked then President Barack Obama for his “red line” statement but urged him not to attack Syria and “fix U.S.A.” instead.
“There can be no dispute that Syria used banned chemical weapons, violated its obligations under the Chemical Weapons Convention, and ignored the urging of the U.N. Security Council,” Trump said Thursday in a statement to the press. “Tonight, I call on all civilized nations to join us in seeking to end the slaughter and bloodshed in Syria, and also to end terrorism of all kinds and all types.”
You can see video released from the Pentagon of the missiles being launched into Syria below: