Monday, 19 November, 2018

'Mission Accomplished' not last of actions vs. Syria

AFP  Getty Images AFP Getty Images
Ellis Copeland | 17 April, 2018, 20:20

Asked about Trump's "Mission Accomplished" assertion, White said it pointed to the successful targeting of three Syrian chemical weapons sites.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad described US -led air strikes against the country as an act of aggression during a meeting with Russian lawmakers Sunday.

The U.S., along with the United Kingdom and France, conducted airstrikes on Saturday in Syria to punish the Assad regime for an apparent chemical weapons attack against civilians.

Macron's comments come after U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said on Sunday that the United States would not pull its troops out of Syria until its goals were accomplished. That decision was seen as confirmation of the elevated standing of Mr Mattis within the United States administration.

After the middle-of-the-night attack on Syria, some US television commentators poked fun at Trump's use of the "Mission accomplished" term, first used in 2003 by former President George W. Bush, who claimed prematurely and wrongly that the USA had successfully completed its military attack on Iraq.

"Assad knew that Russian Federation had its back, Assad knew that Russian Federation would cover for them at the United Nations, and Assad got reckless, and he used it in a way that was far more aggressive", she said.

Syria and Russian Federation have both denied that Syrian government forces carried out the Douma gas attack, suggesting it may have been staged to implicate them.

The Pentagon says none of the missiles were shot down.

Regionally, at the Arab League summit over the weekend, the strikes were discussed and Iraq was one of the few countries to condemn them.

Australia rebukes Russian Federation for cyber attacks on 400 companies
Speaking of Assad and his suspected role in last week's chemical weapons attack, Trump said, "These are not the actions of a man". That clinched a huge victory for Assad, crushing a long rebellion in the eastern Ghouta region near the capital Damascus.


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In Damascus, Syria's Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad met inspectors from the global chemical weapons watchdog OPCW for about three hours in the presence of Russian officers and a senior Syrian security official. The Pentagon said none of its aircraft or missiles were hit by Syrian air defenses.

"When it comes to this use of chemical weapons, it is clear to Canada that chemical weapons were used and that they were used by the Assad regime", Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland said Friday.

The Pentagon said on April 14 that a joint US-British-French operation against Syria's regime had "successfully hit every target", countering assertions from Russian Federation that dozens of missiles were intercepted.

Spectrum News 13 got local reaction following the Syrian airstrikes by the U.S., U.K., and France.

"I'm afraid that is the unhappy corollary of this that if we say we're limiting our action to chemical weapons. then of course it follows that the rest of the Syrian war must proceed as it will", Johnson told BBC television.

That statement came as The Washington Post reported that Mr Trump had felt "misled" into expelling 60 Russian diplomats over the Salisbury spy poisoning.

At a Saturday press briefing, Gen. Kenneth F. McKenzie Jr. said, "None of our aircraft or missiles involved in this operation were successfully engaged by Syrian air defenses, and we have no indication that Russian air-defense systems were employed". The New York Times quoted an unnamed Israeli military source as saying Israel had carried out an April 9 air strike in Syria. "What's Germany going to do?"

In a statement on its website, Stop the War Coalition said it "strongly condemned" the missile blitz adding it will have "only brought the Syrians "more misery and destruction".

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