Pentagon on Syria strikes: 'We successfully hit every target'

May ready to bypass Parliament & approve UK military intervention in Syria – BBC

US, British and French air forces launched missiles early Saturday morning to several military and civilian facilities around Damascus and in the provinces of Homs and Aleppo.

As of yet, there has been no military response from Syria.

Russian Federation has warned the West against attacking Assad, who is also supported by Iran, and says there is no evidence of a chemical attack in Douma, a town near Damascus which had been held by rebels until this month. These are not the actions of a man.

It vowed in its statement that the fact-finding mission due to go to Douma later Saturday "will continue its deployment to the Syrian Arab Republic to establish facts around the allegations of chemical weapons use in Douma".

Residents in Damascus, who had lived on edge for years because of mortar shells lobbed from eastern Ghouta, celebrated the news.

Damascus skies erupt with missile fire as the US launches an attack on Syria targeting different parts of the capital Syria, early Saturday, April 14, 2018.

The Pentagon officials also said that the "Syrian chemical weapons system is larger than the three targets hit in Syria".

They acknowledged that the strike was created to degrade Syria's chemical weapons capability without killing civilians or the many foreign fighters in Syria's multi-sided civil war, particularly those from Russian Federation.

In choosing to strike, it appeared that Trump's desire to punish Assad for what he called a "barbaric act" - and make good on his tweets promising action this week - outweighed his desire to limit the US military involvement in the conflict, at least in the short term. We thank them both. The casualties were reported to be primarily women and children.

The strikes risked pulling the United States deeper into the complex, multisided war in Syria from which Trump only last week said he wanted to withdraw.


France's defence minister has ruled out "confrontation" and "escalation" following its joint military operation with the U.S. and United Kingdom that attacked "targets associated with the chemical weapons capabilities" in Syria.

Meanwhile, the British Cabinet on Thursday gave Prime Minister Theresa May the green light to work with the US and France "to coordinate an worldwide response", though it gave no indication of the timing or scale of any action.

Then came the suspected chemical attack in Douma, followed by global condemnation and threats of military action.

US allies including France and Britain then quickly joined Trump in denouncing Syria and agreed there was a need to respond to the chemical attack. Whatever its scale, the move plunged the USA further into the multi-sided Syrian civil war, even as Trump presses his aides to orchestrate a swift withdrawal of American troops from the country.

"The red line set by France in May 2017 has been crossed", he said. At least one of the buildings was leveled, officials said.

Defense officials said Tomahawk cruise missiles were launched from three USA warships, while B-1 bombers dropped long-range missiles on targets. Still, French Defense minister Florence Parly told reporters that Russian authorities were warned ahead of time, as proof the action would be limited to specific targets.

"I think we dealt them a severe blow", Lt. Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, director of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said at the Pentagon after the overnight bombing.

Trump's deliberations this week over how to respond to the deadly chemical attack occurred at a tenuous moment for his presidency, with the special counsel's investigation winding its way further into the President's inner circle and many of Trump's trusted aides rushing for the exits. "The capital of a sovereign government, trying for years to survive under terrorist aggression, has been attacked", Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova wrote on Facebook. Russia's USA embassy released a statement warning that the airstrikes will "not be left without consequences". They also raised the possibility of confrontation with Russian Federation and Iran, both of which have military forces in Syria to support Assad.

A team of inspectors from the global chemical weapons watchdog was on its way to Syria on Thursday to begin an investigation into a suspected chemical weapons attack near the capital that has brought the war-torn country to the brink of a wider conflict, amid Western threats of retaliation and Russian warnings of the potential for "a risky escalation".

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