Published On: Sat, Apr 14th, 2018

Syria attack: US 'locked and loaded' to attack Assad AGAIN over chemical weapons

This afternoon, the United Nations Security Council met again at the request of Russia.

It follows a wave of strikes by the US, UK and France against alleged chemical weapons facilities in Syria.

And US ambassador Nikki Haley told the meeting: “We are confident that we have crippled Syria’s chemical weapons program.

“We are prepared to sustain this pressure, if the Syrian regime is foolish enough to test our will.

“If the Syrian regime uses this poison gas again, the United States is locked and loaded.”

Russia, a key ally and backer of the Assad regime, has branded the military action “illegal”.

But UK ambassador Karen Pierce told the meeting there had been “clear boundaries” in the action that had been taken in an attempt to avoid escalation.

She said repeated attempts to hold the Syrian regime to account had been met with Russian “obstruction and resistance”.

“We have repeatedly in this council attempted to overcome this obstruction, without success,” she said.

“We are faced with a litany of violations, no sense of guilt, no sense of regret, no sense of responsibility, a shameful record wrapped in a mix of denial, deceit and disinformation.”

Ms Pierce added: “I will take no lessons in international law from Russia.”

The 105 missiles launched overnight in retaliation for a suspected poison gas attack in Syria targeted three chemical weapons facilities, including a research and development in Damascus’ Barzeh district and two facilities near Homs, Pentagon officials said.

Lieutenant General Kenneth McKenzie said: “We believe that by hitting Barzeh in particular we’ve attacked the heart of the Syrian chemicals weapon program.”

However, Mr McKenzie acknowledged elements of Syria’s chemical weapons program remain and he could not guarantee that Syria would be unable to conduct a chemical attack in the future.

Mr Trump called the operation a success in a morning Twitter post and proclaimed: “Mission accomplished.”

The bombing represents a major escalation in the West’s confrontation with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s superpower ally Russia, but is unlikely to alter the course of a multi-sided war that has killed at least half a million people in the past seven years.

That raised the question of where Western countries go from here, after a volley of strikes denounced by Damascus and Moscow as at once both reckless and pointless.

Syria released video of the wreckage of a bombed-out research lab, but also of President Bashar al-Assad arriving at work as usual, with the caption “Morning of resilience”.

Ten hours after the missiles hit, smoke was still rising from the remains of five destroyed buildings of the Syrian Scientific Research Centre in Barzeh, which a Syrian employee said medical components were researched and developed.

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