(SL)- In an attempt to protect Syrian people from their own leader, the United States has finally taken action against Bashar al-Assad. Assad is accused of ordering a horrific nerve gas (Sarin) attack which killed more than 80 of the dictator’s own citizens including children.
Yes, it’s devastating. But at the end of the day, we’re going to kill people to help people? It’s understood that there will be some collateral damage but what about the bigger picture. Reportedly, Russia is not happy.
Putin called it an ‘illegal act of aggression’ and ripped up an agreement to avoid mid-air clashes between Russian and US fighter jets over Syria.
Allegedly, as an immediate act of payback, Russian or Syrian planes once again bombed the town of Khan Sheikhoun, the same location of the nerve attack.
French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault, speaking alongside German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel, said, “We do not want an escalation. We have to stop the hypocrisy. If Russia is acting in good faith it should stop and negotiate.”
World leaders praised the US strikes and urged Putin to hold urgent talks with Trump to prevent the Syria crisis escalating into a wider world conflict.
But is it too late? Sources say, Vladimir Putin has vowed to bolster Assad’s air power f leading to fears that the conflict will spiral into and all-out war between Russia and the West.
The Daily Mail reports, Russian warship the Admiral Grigorovich – armed with cruise missiles and a self-defence system – is docking in Syria today after it was immediately diverted from the Black Sea following Donald Trump’s airstrike on al-Shayrat military airfield near Homs, which killed six and destroyed nine Syrian jets.
The US military fired 59 tomahawk missiles at 1.40am today after the US President blamed Bashar al-Assad’s regime for a horrific nerve gas attack which killed more than 80 of the dictator’s own citizens. Footage showing burnt out shelters and hangars and a damaged runway was cheered by tearful Syrians hoping that Trump’s intervention would lead to Assad being overthrown.
The US used a special military-to-military hotline to warn Russia it was launching an airstrike on a Syrian air base about 30 minutes in advance – but the Trump administration did not ask Moscow for permission. It is likely Russia alerted the Syrians about the incoming strikes but this has not been confirmed.
Viktor Ozerov, head of the defense committee in the Russian Federation Council, told state news agency RIA that the US strikes ‘may undermine the efforts in the fight against terrorism in Syria.
‘Russia will demand an urgent UN Security Council meeting after the US airstrike on Syrian aviation base. This is an act of aggression against a UN member.’ Russia’s foreign minister says no Russian servicemen have been hurt in the bombing raid. The strikes have won broad international support with officials saying that Canada and other allies were behind the move.
Britain backed the US missile strike, describing it as an ‘appropriate response’, as the government offered its full support to Trump’s targeted assault.
A No 10 spokeswoman said: ‘The UK Government fully supports the US action, which we believe was an appropriate response to the barbaric chemical weapons attack launched by the Syrian regime, and is intended to deter further attacks.’ German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande said Syrian president Assad bore ‘sole responsibility’ for the US strike on a regime airbase.
In a joint statement on Friday, they said: ‘After the chemical weapons massacre of April 4 on Khan Sheikhun in northwestern Syria, a military installation of the Syrian regime was destroyed by a US air strike last night.
‘President Assad bears sole responsibility for this development.’ Hollande added that the US strike was what France had been calling for in the wake of another chemical attack in 2013.
Both he and Merkel said their countries would continue to work with UN partners in ‘efforts to hold President Assad responsible for his criminal acts.’
EU President Donald Tusk said the action demonstrated ‘needed resolve’ against chemical attacks. ‘US strikes show needed resolve against barbaric chemical attacks. EU will work with the US to end brutality in Syria,’ Tusk said in a tweet.
Israel’s prime minister also welcomed the US attack saying he ‘fully supports’ President Trump’s decision.
Benjamin Netanyahu said ‘in both word and action’ Trump ‘sent a strong and clear message’ that ‘the use and spread of chemical weapons will not be tolerated.’
It is not yet clear what China’s response has been to Trump’s decision to brazenly announce the strike on Syria while the president was his guest. China has backed Syrian-ally Russia’s attempts to protect Assad’s government and vetoed six resolutions on Syria.
What’s more, Trump didn’t consult Congress before initiating the attack.