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"US Fires Tomahawk Missiles at Syrian Airbase" Topic


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Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian06 Apr 2017 5:34 p.m. PST

They're reporting that 50 Tomahawk missiles were launched at the Syrian airbase believed responsible for the recent gas attack.

Onomarchos Supporting Member of TMP06 Apr 2017 5:54 p.m. PST

Good, I hope they wiped out the degenerates that would use nerve gas on children.

Mark

charles popp06 Apr 2017 6:08 p.m. PST

That is an awful lot of missiles for just one base?

Tgunner06 Apr 2017 6:23 p.m. PST

Not really. That's 50 1,000 pound bombs really, or about 25 tons of "boom". A single B52 can carry about three times that. They are now saying that it was a strike on two bases and that it came from two destroyers.

Noble713 Inactive Member06 Apr 2017 6:50 p.m. PST

Good, I hope they wiped out the degenerates that would use nerve gas on children

Is that more, or less, degenerate than cutting childrens' throats? And if we go around bombing everyone who ever hurts kids, we're going to be busy for a VERY long time….

skipper John Supporting Member of TMP06 Apr 2017 7:41 p.m. PST

GOOD!

Dn Jackson06 Apr 2017 7:55 p.m. PST

"Is that more, or less, degenerate than cutting childrens' throats? And if we go around bombing everyone who ever hurts kids, we're going to be busy for a VERY long time…."

So what? Someone on this planet has to have morals.

Personal logo Cacique Caribe Supporting Member of TMP06 Apr 2017 8:30 p.m. PST

Here's a quick Science question:

If that's where the chemical weapons were stored or staged … would the chemicals spread out with the explosions, or would they just burn up?

Dan
TMP link

Personal logo Weasel Supporting Member of TMP06 Apr 2017 9:01 p.m. PST

I guess the big question now is whether this signals a sustained effort, with all the questions that entails, or whether its a single event in response to the chemical attack?

As for the number of missiles, if you are trying to hit multiple targets that may be reasonably entrenched, its probably not that large a number.

basileus6606 Apr 2017 9:06 p.m. PST

Clinton used Tomahawks to bomb AQ after the first attack against WTC… or was it after USS Cole's bombing by a suicide attacker? Or the US embassy in Kenya? Can't remember. It was ineffective.

Personal logo Cacique Caribe Supporting Member of TMP06 Apr 2017 9:25 p.m. PST

Basileus66,

I thought Clinton launched his missile in response to an intern. :)

link

Dan

Bangorstu06 Apr 2017 10:05 p.m. PST

Given they gave advanced warming this is a rap on the knuckles. Too late in the day to do much good alas…the time for this was before ISIS and al-Nusra destroyed the FSA.

If they did hit the sarin, it will destroy it. Hence no-one bekieves the Russian story about stocks on the ground being hit.

Bangorstu06 Apr 2017 10:09 p.m. PST

As for the effect, a major airbase has been destroyed. That's a message given this can be repeated…and air power is what is winning the war for Assad.

McWong7306 Apr 2017 10:09 p.m. PST

Wasn't it in honour of Don Rickles passing?

PMC31706 Apr 2017 11:54 p.m. PST

Air power from the Russian Air Force is pivotal; smashing up the SyAAF won't help the Syrian government much but it's also not going to be war winning for the disparate rebel militias.

My main fear/concern is what the Russians will do. Hopefully nothing crazy. They're usually pretty cold and sensible about realpolitik. Maybe replace the destroyed planes and help rebuild the airfield?

Rod I Robertson Supporting Member of TMP Inactive Member07 Apr 2017 2:21 a.m. PST

Well the US has opened a new can of worms for itself. They have once again attacked a sovereign state without UN sanction or any legal standing. This strike was an act of war and the congress was not consulted before this decision was taken. Yes, the congressional leadership was informed of the strike but they did not authorise this action. There is no way the US Administration can twist and contort the 2001 AUMF as a basis for this attack. Nor can they use old post-WWI agreements to prevent the use of chemical weapons because those require proof of use and League of Nations consent. The proof which is hotly disputed in the 2014 and 2015 attacks is unclear and unreliable and the proof which has not yet been determined in the most recent chemical attack/release at Khan Sheikhoun is also insufficient for a casus belli at this point. Thus, by launching these strikes, the US Administration has broken both international law and is in violation of the US Constitution and the War Powers Act.

The worm of a Syrian response will likely involve a formal declaration by the Sryian regime ordering all US forces out of Syrian sovreign territory immediately and threatening attacks upon them if they remain on Syrian territory. Such attacks on US forces illegally in Syria under the pretext of protecting Syria's sovereignty are entirely legal. Such attacks would likely start as deniable, irregular force attacks and 'accidental' strikes but would eventually escalate to overt military action. Such attacks would likely achieve little success vs. the US forces but could draw Russia into direct conflict.

The next worm is what will Russia do? Probably nothing overt if the US limits itself to just this one strike. But should more follow then Russia might actively defend Syrian airspace and land sovereignty. That could snowball into a shooting war and could escalate to a much wider conflict.

This latest strike was ill-advised and likely premature. If it turns out that the Khan Shiekhoun chemical strike was an accidental release of chemical weapons in rebel control due to regime bombing of a rebel storage position then the US is going to look be viewed very poorly down the road. Testing of the quality of the sarin will tell if it is from low-grade Syrian stocks or whether it is the much higher quality sarin allegedly supplied to the rebels through Turkey. Why must we always endure rash old men rushing to war for their own selfish reasons without due consideration and transparent examination of the evidence for a casus belli?

Rod Robertson

Cosmic Reset07 Apr 2017 3:38 a.m. PST

Beyond all of the legality, and speculation of escalation, what we have is another attack, more death, and absolutely no plan to bring the conflict to an end.

Without a comprehensive plan to bring about an end to the conflict, what good will come from occasionally throwing a punch into a never ending fight?

pzivh43 Supporting Member of TMP07 Apr 2017 3:42 a.m. PST

"Bad men need nothing more to compass their ends, than that good men should look on and do nothing." John Stuart Mill, 1867

PMC31707 Apr 2017 3:59 a.m. PST

Rod – yes.
Irishserb – yes.

And as before we are left helpless in the face of madness.

Bangorstu07 Apr 2017 4:36 a.m. PST

Rob – plenty of legal standing. Syria signe dup to getting rid of their chemical weapons or facing the consequences.

Preventing a breech of the GC is also allowable.

The proof is not hotly disputed… even the Russians say it was Sarin, and only Assad has that.

There's talk on the BBC that the Americans have worked out how to jam Syrian air defence, so it could be the Syrians can't actually do anything. It would explain why the Israelis have managed to fly over Syria with impunity.

Rod I Robertson Supporting Member of TMP Inactive Member07 Apr 2017 4:49 a.m. PST

Bangorstu:

The case is not nearly as clear as you seem to indicate it is. The rebels may have and have used sarin in the past. That sarin came from precursor chemicals allegedly supplied by Turkey. There is also some evidence that the sarin may have been fully manufactured in Turkey. There are leaked recordings and transcripts of very senior Turkish military officers discussing the 'pipe-line' and possible use of sarin. Seymour Hersh and many others brought the story to world attention but were largely ignored as their reportage did not serve the interests of Western policy at the time.

According to Hersh, the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency issued a highly classified five-page "talking points" briefing on June 19th which stated the Syrian rebel group al-Nusra maintained a sarin production cell. According to the DIA, it was, quote, "the most advanced sarin plot since al-Qaida's pre-9/11 effort." The DIA document went on to state, quote, "Turkey and Saudi-based chemical facilitators were attempting to obtain sarin precursors in bulk, tens of kilograms, likely for the anticipated large scale production effort in Syria." A month before the DIA briefing was written, more than ten members of al-Nusra were arrested in southern Turkey with what local police told the press were two kilograms of sarin.

From:

link

Also:

link

Rod Robertson.

Legends In Time Skip Sponsoring Member of TMP07 Apr 2017 4:52 a.m. PST

Forget the UN for anything except the occasional food & medicine shipment's, which they do well.

Kick them out of New York and let the spy's fester somewhere else.

daler240D Supporting Member of TMP07 Apr 2017 5:48 a.m. PST

the overwhelming general consensus is that Assad used sarin. One could find a conspiracy website to attempt to throw questions on anything, including the roundness of the earth, but it doesn't nor should it disprove anything. This trend of saying that there are no agreeable facts merely because you can site a website is the most dangerous thing in my lifetime, surpassing mutual assured destruction during the cold war.
Now THAT being said, the institutions that we have trusted in the past have not done a great job at maintaining their integrity and we are all suffering a result as fools and opportunists now run around empowered to elevate their claims to the table where the grown ups sit.

USAFpilot07 Apr 2017 5:57 a.m. PST

Damned if you do, damned if you don't. There are both 'pros' and 'cons' to this attack. On the plus side it sends the world a message that when President Trump makes a statement, he is prepared to back it up with force. The days of Obama's tough talk on 'red' lines are over. On the negative side, the US has a lousy track record of interfering in the Middle-East. Whatever Trump does, he will be criticized by the main stream media. I think the US should withdraw all our ground forces from Syria.

daler240D Supporting Member of TMP07 Apr 2017 6:11 a.m. PST

re: "when President Trump makes a statement…" You probably should not have started off with that. His credibility with all the things he says, constantly, has probably been one of the worst things for our stature in the world. This singular instance not with standing.

USAFpilot07 Apr 2017 6:32 a.m. PST

daler240D, I get it, you didn't vote for Trump; therefore everything he does is seen in that context.

daler240D Supporting Member of TMP07 Apr 2017 6:50 a.m. PST

not everything he does. I support the air strike (and a few other thing) as the right response, but he has a lot of work to do to step up on the world stage as a reliable leader. Australia and the UK are our closest, most dependable allies.

Bangorstu07 Apr 2017 8:00 a.m. PST

Harsh uses anonymous sources a lot …. he lacks credibility.

I'm more inclined to believe the witnesses on the ground, some of whom were Western.

Still no credible evidence the rebels have sarin and everyone acceots that Assad does.

He also had an air force and a history of using it to drop chemical weapons.

Black Guardian07 Apr 2017 8:04 a.m. PST

"the overwhelming general consensus is that Assad used sarin."

And that makes it a fact?

Who creates this overwhelming general consensus? And in whose interest do they work?

What interest would Assad have in throwing chemical weapons at rebels, risking exactly the political fallout and consequences that just occured, if he could instead have used regular old iron bombs, cluster munitions or other "conventional" weapons?

Assuming that the Syrian Forces indeed saw no other option than using nerve gas would imply that the Syrian Government is in a more desperate situation than it seems to be throughout the last months. The regime seems to be making gains, why risk these with such foolish action?

Who profits?

Heck, you can call me conspiracy theorist, but in my opinion it is more likely that this is a false flag operation organized by some interest groups who want to get rid of Assad once and for all.

Rod I Robertson Supporting Member of TMP Inactive Member07 Apr 2017 8:32 a.m. PST

Two interesting articles which cast doubt on the narrative whch is 'the general consensus':

link

and:

link

Rod Robertson.

daler240D Supporting Member of TMP07 Apr 2017 9:13 a.m. PST

Never heard of either of these sites before.

Private Matter07 Apr 2017 9:32 a.m. PST

Rod I Robertson be wary of those sources to back up your otherwise lucid arguments. The second source links the White Helmets to Al-Queda and the only folks who have ever linked those two groups to my knowledge has been the Syrian government and Russia. Using those sources is tantamount to someone using InfoWars and Brietbart to argue against you. This isn't an attack on you or your stance just an observation on the credibility of the sources you quote.

Personal logo Weasel Supporting Member of TMP07 Apr 2017 9:46 a.m. PST

Maybe at some point, one of the fine specimens we keep electing can tell us what on earth our actual objectives are, then correlate those objectives to actions taken.

Rod I Robertson Supporting Member of TMP Inactive Member07 Apr 2017 9:59 a.m. PST

Private Matter:

Thank you for your concern and your point is well taken.

I know the two sources and I am aware of their biases. Zero Hedge is registered in Bulgaria and often has a pro-Russian and strangely pro-Trump anti-establishment slant. I don't trust them much but the questions they raise are good questions and need to be asked and answered.

Almasdar News is also unreliable but again asks good questions in this article. Questions which the Western mainstream media refuse to explore and report upon. Almasdar is based in the UAE and has a pro-Syrian Regime bias.

I don't look to either source for answers but these two articles ask good questions.

As does this one from The Intercept's Glenn Greenwald (Warning: this is a very politically charged article; read it at your own peril!):

link

Rod Robertson.

Personal logo Weasel Supporting Member of TMP07 Apr 2017 10:02 a.m. PST

USAF – In 2013, the president went to congress for approval and was declined at the time.

GarrisonMiniatures Supporting Member of TMP Inactive Member07 Apr 2017 10:35 a.m. PST

A consistent policy would be nice. OK, new regime in town so you expect policy to change – but so far I haven't been able to see any kind of coherent 'new' US policy on Syria – or anything else really. Every new attack or statement by just about anyone seems to lead to a change in direction. Policy seems to be a matter of whim – not a good way to run operations like this. Also, the uncertainty it creates is dangerous.

doug redshirt07 Apr 2017 10:42 a.m. PST

It is strange that Assad who has gotten 80% of Syria back, would do something so likely to attracted world interest. I am the first one to laugh at crazy conspiracy theories, but something stinks here. Heck I would believe the Russians did it so someone could look tough and presidential.

14Bore07 Apr 2017 11:38 a.m. PST

History is filled with goverments murdering their own citizens, it can't hurt to smack them down a little.

Personal logo Weasel Supporting Member of TMP07 Apr 2017 11:40 a.m. PST

It's worth noting that it's entirely possible that Assad is just plain old bonkers.

Terrement Supporting Member of TMP07 Apr 2017 11:47 a.m. PST

DELETED

darthfozzywig Supporting Member of TMP Inactive Member07 Apr 2017 11:54 a.m. PST

Or that Assad's regime isn't utterly confident of victory.

Or that the regime wants to accelerate the collapse of its internal enemies.

Or that it did think it could get away with another chemical attack given the feckless international response of the past.

Plenty of upsides for Assad using sarin and few downsides.

Puddinhead Johnson07 Apr 2017 12:17 p.m. PST

I thought Obama forced the Syrians to give up their chemical weapons a few years ago?

Really surprising that that deal was just a sham, isn't it?

Personal logo Cacique Caribe Supporting Member of TMP07 Apr 2017 12:21 p.m. PST

@Black Guardian: "Who profits? Heck, you can call me conspiracy theorist, but in my opinion it is more likely that this is a false flag operation organized by some interest groups who want to get rid of Assad once and for all."

Excellent point. There are after all many stockpiles elsewhere in Syria and Iraq.

So, of the players with the means to pull this off somewhat convincingly, and who may have gotten a delivery method that mimicked or coincided with a typical Syrian air attack … who has been wanting the ousting of Assad the most?

- Russia? No
- Iran? No
- Israel? Yes and no
- Turkey? Definitely
- ISIS? Definitely (plus they need the "Romans" to arrive in full force in Syria, in order to bring about the fulfillment of their apocalyptic prophesy)
- Sunni Syrian Rebels? Definitely
- China? Yes, if it will distract the US from the South China Sea and North Korean issues.
- US? Trump, not until now. The CIA, they kinda do their own thing.

Did I miss any other key players?

Dan

zoneofcontrol Inactive Member07 Apr 2017 12:22 p.m. PST

Still find it hysterical that people seem to treat locations such as "Syria" and "Libya" as actual countries. Little to no control over huge swaths of the area and indiscriminate use of conventional and non-conventional weapons on allies and foes alike.

While some people like the idea of going to an organizations like the UN to get several hot air "resolutions" over umpteen years as what they call the "process." People out here in the real world are being murdered by the score.

I'm glad not to be among the people that support this ongoing genocide by wishing to follow fruitless whine fests. I would much rather someone put their boot down really hard and stop it from continuing.

Personal logo Cacique Caribe Supporting Member of TMP07 Apr 2017 12:29 p.m. PST

@Zoneofcontrol: "Still find it hysterical that people seem to treat locations such as 'Syria' and 'Libya' as actual countries. Little to no control over huge swaths of the area and indiscriminate conventional and non-conventional weapons on allies and foes alike."

Well, to be fair, people are typically partial to using existing national labels and map boundaries, specially since the zones controlled by so many of the factions keep changing by the week.

picture

picture

Personally, I think it's time we started calling these areas the Syrian Black Hole and the Libyan Cess Pool. Or simply "the country formerly known as (pick the accepted national designation)".

Dan

raylev307 Apr 2017 12:42 p.m. PST

Some of you are reading way too much into this. Syria used chemical weapons against civilians. To allow this to go unanswered, again, will only lead to the normalization of their use. Assad needs to know there is a price to pay for their use.

The shame is that as long as Russia backs him on the ground, Assad will remain in power. And I question whether we really want him removed given the power vacuum that would be created a la Iraq.

But using chemical weapons on civilians is a no-no.

darthfozzywig Supporting Member of TMP Inactive Member07 Apr 2017 12:50 p.m. PST

I thought Obama forced the Syrians to give up their chemical weapons a few years ago?

Really surprising that that deal was just a sham, isn't it?

But I'm sure the Iranian nuclear deal is totally legit.

Personal logo 20thmaine Supporting Member of TMP07 Apr 2017 12:52 p.m. PST

That is an awful lot of missiles for just one base?

I thought that then I looked at the base on Google maps and thought yeah that was really a lot of cruise missiles for what they were firing at.

link

Fortunately the USA is rolling in money, so not a problem.

Personal logo Cacique Caribe Supporting Member of TMP07 Apr 2017 1:05 p.m. PST

Well, $59 USD million in missiles …

That's just a couple of minutes accrued interest on the US debt clock, isn't it?

Or one or two Presidential family (and entourage) "working vacations"? :)

Dan

darthfozzywig Supporting Member of TMP Inactive Member07 Apr 2017 1:56 p.m. PST

This is why we can't have nice things.

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