On Thursday’s broadcast of CNN’s “AC360,” Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) reacted to the US missile strikes against Syria by saying they showed “that the days of being able to act with impunity are over, when it comes to Bashar al-Assad, and that there is now an American president prepared to do what it takes” and “an actual degrading of the capability of the Syrian regime to carry out further chemical attacks against innocent civilians.”
Rubio said, “I don’t believe this is a message. I believe this is actually a tactical action that furthers an objective, which is important. My guess is, and I think you’ll see confirmation of it shortly, Shayrat Airfield, which is where these chemical attacks were launched from with fixed-wing aircraft just a couple of days ago is going to be the target, and that is the airfield from which the chemical attacks were launched. It’s also a critical point in a part of the country where they are battling rebels…in the northern part of Syria.
So, as I said, I think this is an important decisive step that was taken. It is not a message. It is an actual degrading of the capability of the Syrian regime to carry out further chemical attacks against innocent civilians. This will degrade their capability to launch those attacks from the air, and I think it was an important step, and hopefully it’s part of a comprehensive strategy moving forward to bring to a close this chaos is happening in Syria.”
He added, “I would say to everybody this is not just some symbolic measure. it is a strategic objective, and…they appear to have dedicated the necessary resources to achieve a specific strategic objective, and that’s the way you conduct these things.”
Rubio concluded, “[T]onight’s actions show that the days of being able to act with impunity are over, when it comes to Bashar al-Assad, and that there is now an American president prepared to do what it takes to ensure that he does not have the capability — or that his capability to conduct these sorts of heinous war crimes is diminished and that he’s held accountable.”