US Airstrikes on Syria: False Pretenses Leading to WW3

U.S. Navy guided-missile destroyer USS Ross (DDG 71) fires a tomahawk land attack missile in Mediterranean Sea which U.S. Defense Department said was a part of cruise missile strike against Syria on April 7, 2017.

US Airstrikes on Syria: False Pretenses, Unpredictable Consequences (VIDEO)

© REUTERS/ Robert S. Price/Courtesy U.S. Navy

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By kicking off the missile attack on the Syrian Arab Army’s airfield near Homs the US demonstrated that it is not going to clear the way for anyone in Syria, including Moscow, Radio Sputnik commentator Ilya Kharlamov wrote. Launched under false pretenses the attack may have unpredictable consequences, the commentator warned.

The White House has shown that it is not going to clear the way for anyone in Syria by launching an air attack on the Syrian military airfield near Homs, Radio Sputnik commentator Ilya Kharlamov notes.

“The US attack on Syrian military airfield, which killed Syrian soldiers, predictably became a cold shower for those who pinned their hopes on the common sense and wisdom of the American political elite headed by President [Trump],” Kharlamov wrote in his recent op-ed.

The Russian commentator called attention to the fact that tensions over Syria have soared dramatically during the last few days: Washington pointed the finger of blame at Damascus for the suspected chemical attack in Idlib, providing no evidence to back the allegations.Speaking to Sputnik Turkey, Faruk Logoglu, former Turkish ambassador to the US, drew historical parallels between the reaction of US politicians to an alleged Idlib attack and former US Secretary of State Colin Powell’s claims that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction.

“That became the reason for the invasion of Iraq. In Syria, during the reign of Obama, the same issue with chemical weapons was already raised; however, it was settled with the assistance of the UN,” Logoglu remarked.

“However, we see that a number of Western countries, in particular the United States, already claim that this [suspected] chemical attack [in Idlib] was carried out by the forces of al-Assad,” the Turkish politician said.

For his part, Russian President Vladimir Putin warned against leaping to conclusions. Speaking to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu by phone Putin stressed the unacceptability of making groundless accusations against anyone before a thorough and impartial international investigation.

Interestingly enough, commenting on the alleged use of chemical weapons Wednesday, US Rep. Adam Schiff, the ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee, dropped the hint that Washington may step in to “ground” the Syrian Air Force in the wake of the Idlib incident.

The veiled threat turned into a reality Thursday night, when the United States launched 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles at the Syrian military airfield in Ash Shairat, located about 40 kilometers (25 miles) from the city of Homs.US President Donald Trump specified that the attack was a response to the suspected chemical weapon use in Syria.

In response, the Kremlin stated that it views the US missile attack against Syria as an act of aggression against a sovereign state.

“President [Vladimir] Putin regards the US 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,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Friday.

According to Kharlamov, “it appears that the fears of those who suggested during the presidential campaign that the ‘predictable’ Hillary Clinton is not the worst option in comparison with the ‘unpredictable’ Donald Trump were not unfounded.”

“When you listen to the current US president, it looks as if the decision to launch Tomahawks at the Syrian airbase, which was used to conduct air strikes against terrorists, was taken spontaneously, under the influence of emotions,” the Russian commentator said.

Kharlamov recalled that several days ago the Trump administration sent a clear signal that it didn’t consider topping Syrian President Bashar al-Assad its priority.The “timely” Idlib incident played into the hands of those US politicians who insist that “Assad must go.”

However, the Russian Defense Ministry said that the US missile attack on a Syrian airbase had been prepared long ago.

“It is evident that the US cruise missile strikes against a Syrian airbase have been prepared long before today’s events. A large system of measures of reconnaissance, planning, preparation of flight tasks and bringing the missiles to launch readiness needs to be carried out to prepare such an attack,” the ministry’s spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said.

The Idlib chemical attack “served only as a formal pretext, while the demonstration of military force took place exclusively due to internal political reasons,” Konashenkov stressed.

To make matters even more complicated, there are signs that Trump may consider the possibility of kicking off a ground operation in Syria, Kharlamov noted.

“At the same time, the present American administration, which has seemingly inherited the traditions of their predecessors, completely ignores the use of chemical weapons in Syria by terrorists,” the Russian commentator said.

“It is clear that Trump’s declining [political] rating and the continuing accusations regarding his alleged ties with Moscow force the US President to act more resolutely… On the other hand, [he finds it] necessary to appease the American public by demonstrating that the US, with the new leader, is not going to share global dominance with anyone, especially with Russia,” Kharlamov concluded.

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