Well, that was quick, wasn’t it?
According to NBC News, the U.S. has officially taken military action in Syria just days after Bashar al-Assad launched a chemical attack on his people – Trump’s first major military intervention and he’s only been in office for 76 days.
More than 50 Tomahawk cruise missiles fired by US on Syrian airfield nears Homs; runway, aircraft, infrastructure targeted.
— NBC Nightly News (@NBCNightlyNews) April 7, 2017
The news organization reports that dozens of missiles were launched from Navy destroyers, targeting a Syrian airfield where it’s believed the chemical attack originated from.
More from NBC News:
The United States launched dozens of cruise missiles Thursday night at a Syrian airfield in response to what it believes was the Syrian government’s use of banned chemical weapons blamed for having killed at least 100 people on Tuesday, U.S. military officials told NBC News.
The U.S. military fired at least 50 Tomahawk missiles intended for a single target — Ash Sha’irat in Homs province in western Syria, the officials said.
That’s the airfield from which the United States believes the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad fired the banned weapons.
The missile launch authorized by the Trump administration represents a stunning reversal of the president’s previous position, which was opposition to any military action in Syria. In 2013, he even tweeted this:
President Obama, do not attack Syria. There is no upside and tremendous downside. Save your “powder” for another (and more important) day!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 7, 2013
Not all of the details are known at this hour, but what is evident is that Trump – or whoever made this decision while the president remains at his non-secure Mar-a-Lago resort – was more interested in making a symbolic, political move than he was in making a thoughtful decision that would have a positive, lasting impact on the situation in Syria and the region more generally.
It’s still not clear whether America’s allies or the U.S. Congress were informed by the administration before they launched this offensive in Syria. It’s also important to remember that Trump had no approval, whether from the United Nations or Congress, to bomb a sovereign country.
This is still a developing situation, but it certainly didn’t take the new president long to start a new war in the Middle East.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.