Tomahawk Missile Strike on Syria Damage Assessment
Military used 59 Tomahawk missiles from two destroyers in the Mediterranean Sea.
On Thursday night, President Donald Trump ordered an airstrike against Syria near an airfield where President Bashar al-Assad’s regime allegedly launched a chemical attack that killed over 60 people.
The U.S. military attacked the Shayrat air base near Homs with 59 Tomahawk missiles from the Mediterranean Sea, which caused immense damage “to airfields, planes and fueling facilities allegedly used by the Assad regime.”
Axios has reported that 19 people died at the air base. Syrian officials also stated that “9 people, all civilians, died when 3 missiles struck 2 towns near the air base.”
From Fox News:
“Initial indications are that this strike has severely damaged or destroyed Syrian aircraft and support infrastructure and equipment at Shayrat Airfield, reducing the Syrian government’s ability to deliver chemical weapons,” Captain Jeff Davis, a Pentagon spokesman, said, according to Reuters.
Davis said the U.S. was still assessing the result of the 59 Tomahawks it fired, expressing hope that Assad’s government learned a lesson. He said it was ultimately “the regime’s choice” if more U.S. military action would be needed.
Fox News is told the missiles were the Tomahawk “E” or Echo version. It is the latest model and has two-way satellite communication allowing the missile to be reprogrammed in flight if needed. The missiles can carry 1,000-pound warheads.
The U.S. did notify “both Russia and Syria about the airstrikes hours before they launched.” Our officials have also started an investigation into “whether Russia was involved in the chemical weapons attack, military officials told AP.”
Syria lashed out against the strike:
Bashar Jaafari, Syria’s ambassador to the UN, accuses the US of a “barbaric and flagrant act” that violates international law.
The strikes on a military airfield, he says, lead to “a number of martyrs, including women and children, and wide-ranging material damage”. It remains unclear what damage or casualties were caused by the strikes: the White House has said all 59 missiles hit their targets, while Russian authorities have claimed that fewer than half did.
Nevertheless Jaafari says: “This treacherous act of aggression is a grave violation of the charter of the United Nations as well as all international laws and norms.”
Russia, Assad’s strongest ally, condemned the airstrike and decided to suspend “an agreement to minimize the risk pof in-flight incidents between U.S. and Russian aircraft operating over Syria.” From Axios:
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told Russian state-run news agency Sputnik that president Putin regards the attacks on Syria as “an aggression against a sovereign state in violation of the norms of international law, and under a trumped-up pretext at that.” He added that the move “substantially damages Russian-U.S. relations, which are already in a deplorable state.”
Russian PM Dmitry Medvedev also stated that the “U.S. missile strike violated not only international, but also U.S. laws,” adding that the attack “was on the brink of military clashes with Russia.” However former U.S. ambassador to Russia, Michael McFaul, tweeted that choosing the PM to make the statement shows that Russia isn’t as furious about the strike as they may seem. “Let me know when Putin says something serious,” he wrote.
U.S. Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley told the security council that the country is “prepared to do more but we hope that is not necessary.” From The Guardian:
Haley says that changed with the US strike. “When the international community fails in its duty to act collectively there are times when states are compelled to take their own action.”
The use of chemical weapons against civilians is “one of those times”, she says, and the cause for which “our military destroyed the airfield from which this week’s chemical strikes took place”.
“We were fully justified in doing so. The moral stain of the Assad regime could no longer go unanswered. “His crimes against humanity could no longer be met with empty words.”
“Bashar al-Assad must never use chemical weapons again, ever.”
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And the Same People who claimed that Putin hacked the election for Trump are now GLEEFULLY predicting a war with Russia.
Does that make sense to anyone?
Let them be forced to be the first in line – armed with only sling shots……
Tactical dildos and pussy hats.
Y’all remember Ben Shapiro, who several T-rump suckers here said we’d never hear from again when he quit T-rumpBart…
the boy asks some really good questions some of you might want to think about.
If you still can…
As I figured. Thinking is so verboten in the T-rump era.
Since we all know how you love to quote Mark Levin, you no doubt agree with him on this too, right? (Fridays show)
“You should be very proud of your president, that’s a leader.”
“By God, when he does the right thing and he does it in such a wonderful way, as a true leader, then he needs to have our support. We need to have his back.”
“Under the War Powers Act, it’s perfectly legal.”
“I want to say this to the president of the United States, I want to thank you. I, and I think we are very proud of you. The rest of the world now knows that we have a real commander in chief. Our allies are thrilled, our enemies are nervous. That’s exactly the way it’s supposed to be.”
As with every source of opinion, I think critically about what Levin says, and we often disagree. As here.
I’m not the slavish follower here. Remember?
Did you read the Shapiro piece? I found it thought-provoking. You?
Yes I read it.
As always with Shapiro v. Trump, it looks like he somewhat agrees with the action, but he tries hard to find fault with it simply because it’s Trump.
And he is in good company with a few liberals who claim he needed congressional approval, when actual constitutionalists like Levin disagree. As I understand it, Executive authority to strike when the iron is hot without Congress goes clear back to Jefferson.
And are we 100% sure that the Gang of 8 in Congress were not informed prior to the strike?
I’m still soaking all of this in and, and like many others, unsure where this will lead. The UN was obviously not going to do a damn thing, and it seems to be one of those times when doing nothing shouldn’t have even been on the table
Shapiro asked questions.
Andy McCarthy provided answers.
Mark Levin was breathtakingly cavalier with his backhanded dismissal of the War Powers Act. I’ve seldom heard him indulge in more fallacies and specious bullshit.
Even he had to apologize for what he was saying by bringing up the idea of an amendment to make his bullshit constitutional.
What he was saying was also anti-historic, as in our early years a hostile fleet could sail into New York or Baltimore or Savannah (or all three), and our first notice of them would be their broadsides.
We were NOT attacked. NO vital interest of the US was at risk. T-rump was emotionally reacting, and that is a VERY poor route.
Doing “nothing” is vastly different than doing the right thing after THINKING about it. As I noted elsewhere, the root of the decision-tree is deciding to do “something”. The branches ramify off from there…
When it came to foreign policy, I was worried that the 2016 election would be a case of Clinton delivering the third Obama term.
Instead, we have Trump giving us the third Clinton term.
President Donald Trump has now done what candidate Donald Trump committed not to do: He has launched a military strike against a foreign regime — a repulsive one, to be sure — in the absence of any threat, much less any attack, against the United States, in furtherance of no vital American interests.
Trump’s act of war is in violation of the Constitution, which requires congressional authorization for such an offensive use of military force, provoked by no aggression against our nation.
Or, as someone once said: *one of many T-rump tweets on the subject*
Mind you, that’s just one in a series of “Syria is NOT our problem” tweets in which Trump ripped Obama for not recognizing that “the so called ‘rebels’ may be just as bad (or worse)!”
The U.S. attack is an impulsive intervention in a civil war in which both sides — the Damascus/Tehran/Moscow alliance and its Sunni-jihadist/sharia-supremacist opposition — are hostile to the United States. It is a war in which Bashar al-Assad’s continuation in power, dismal as that prospect may be, is in no way the worst conceivable outcome for American national security.
Listening to the Levin show this morning, I found it remarkably disappointing.
I hope that it was simply an impulsive act. There is a real chance that it was done to gain the support of GOPe members, and RINOS such as McCain and Graham, who have a psychotic desire to see Assad replaced with radical Islamics.
Oh boy! Now the never-trumpers are saying he didn’t get the runways so it was a failure. Hello! It was to show this idiot Asshat that we can hit any exact target we want to hit and leave the runways alone. Next time it will be his own home and underground bunker. It is amazing what children lefties are.
$59 Million dollars in Cruise missiles plus moving three missle-launching distroyers into the Mediterranean just to to put on a show? But you may be right about a show, because the Russians and therefore the Syrians were notified by Trump hours before the attack.
If, as has been alternatively proposed, history shows that there is strong possibility that the Jihad opposition force in Syria may have been responsible for the saran gas, since the Jihadis had the stuff back in 2013. If Trump was smart, he would know that faked reasons for fake attacks have started more than one war. Evidence, as the Russians have already pointed out, that U.S. military redeployment indicates that yesterday’s attack was planned weeks ago, now appears to have some legs.
Time to put on your tinfoil hat! I’ve seen the sites that are claiming that it is all a big fake and that, as nut job Ron Paul says a “False flag”. This isn’t Trump making these assessments. It is our top military and intelligence people. If they are that stupid then they should all be fired.
It pays to listen carefully to what those military and intelligence people say. None of them are stating, categorically, that Assad dropped sarin gas or any chemical munitions. They are all using qualifiers such as “high probability” and “we strongly suspect” that this chemical release was from a weapon dropped by Syrian warplanes. In other words, no clear evidence has been provided, from any objective source, which catagorically proves that this release was the intentional work of Syria. Personally, I would like to be convicted on the basis of real evidence before I was executed, wouldn’t you?
And worth every danged penny.
on not hitting the runways:
Runways don’t move.
Aircraft move, fuel tanks can be drained, workshops full of bomb arming devices and equipment can be packed up, and air defense operations can be shuffled off to different areas. We fired fifty some cruise missiles into the same number of mobile targets >first< and then if additional aircraft are flown in to compensate for their loss, we can blow them up too. Remember, Syria has a limited number of expensive SU-22 bombers and lots of flat chunks of concrete. The remaining aircraft will be shuffled around the country, hidden in cameo and moved like shuffled cards, thus making them far less effective.
tl;dr Bomb things that can move first, then things that can't later if you really need to.
Donald Trump is not Barrack Obama, Thank God!
The greatest damage is Trump’s loss of his loyal base. I guess he was Lyin’ Trump all through the campaign.
I don’t see that happening. Maybe a few RINO’s, but not the loyalists. He wasn’t elected just to piss off Hillary.
You’ll want to look up tweets by Ann “In Trump We Trust” Coulter and Laura Ingraham. To say nothing of the alt-right bois.
Fifty Tomahawks isn’t hardly an ME intervention. It’s more like a training day for two destroyer crews. Who can deny a bunch of sailors some fun that doesn’t involve booze and hookers. It must be a lot of fun firing one of those boogers.
Yah, no. Try not to deflect.
The point was T-rump’s support, not was it a fun day for the navy.
Tillerson made some interesting comments on the reasons for the attack as well as the targeting and tactics used.
After wading through the “we have a high level of confidence” qualifiers, one realizes that there is NO hard evidence possessed, or admitted to being possessed by our intelligence community. These are the same qualifiers used in regard to basis for the “The Russians Influenced the Last Election” claim.
Also, the claim is made that none of the “suspected” “nerve agent” depositories was targeted to avoid nearby civilian casualties if there was “suspected” chemical weapons in these locations. Instead, aircraft and their support facilities were destroyed so that aircraft could not be used to deliver “suspected” chemical agents. Interestingly enough, destroying the aircraft also reduces the Syrian capability to deliver airstrikes upon ISIS and other rebels in the area. It also does not inhibit the ability of the Syrians to place the intact chemical weapons on artillery rockets or in shells. Tillerson also said this was done to keep terrorists from gaining control of these “suspected” chemical weapons and using them against American forces or civilians, including in the US. How leaving the munitions intact is supposed to accomplish that is unknown.
Finally, the Syria media is reporting that missiles which struck a nearby town killed 9 civilians including a child. If the account is accurate, this ups the ante greatly for the actions of the President.
The Syrian media is honest?
That is the question. I do not trust any media, explicitly. So, let’s wait and see if this accurate or not.
If it is, where is the moral high ground here?
I don’t think you are correct about the evidence. I saw the satellite route of the aircraft that dropped the bombs and they were easily followed from the hit airbase to the gas site and then back to the airbase. I guess it could have been a recon flight but I would expect them to be a little OVER cautious before attacking.
That’s right, we tracked an aircraft route. What we have no reliable intel on is what munitions were dropped. It could have been sarin gas. Or it could have been one of the chlorine barrel bombs. It could have been a conventional bomb, which hit a chemical stock pile held by the “rebels”. What we have is a lot of supposition by intelligence services which were also positive that the Russian government hacked the DNC server. In both cases, we have never seen any hard evidence that this is correct. And, Now Tillerson and other higher ups in the administration as using qualifiers such as that noted above.
Now, just for the sake of argument, let us assume that it is correct that Assad dropped sarin gas munitions in this incident. What was the big hurry to attack the Syrian state? None. And, even if Assad did crop sarin gas munitions, what authority does the US have to unilaterally use force against Syria for a violation of the Chemical Weapons Convention of 2013?
Anyone want to bet Israel was consulted on this before the button was pushed? I am seeing this as a repeat of Reagan/Libya not Clinton/Aspirin factory. That we knew of a Russian drone over the area and at the soon to be bombed hospital means we have assets and more intel than being let on to. Is this sarin from Assad or left over from Sadam that was spirited across the border before GW2?
Obama doesn’t work here anymore.
I am cool with it.
$59 million dollars worth of missiles fired into Libya. What a waste, considering all that needs to be done in the US. How many blighted neighborhoods could have been eliminated if those Tomahawks had been fired right here at home?
It wasn’t Libya, it was Syria. Like there’s a difference.