Tags: sen. angus king | syria | chemical weapons | syrian president bashar al-assad | president donald trump

Sen. King: Syria Strike Was 'Justified,' Within National Interest

Image: Sen. King: Syria Strike Was 'Justified,' Within National Interest
Sen. Angus King (Getty Images)

By    |   Sunday, 15 April 2018 07:12 PM

The missile strike on Syria was "within our national interest and justified" to take out its chemical weapons capacity, Maine Sen. Angus King told CNN's State of the Union on Sunday.

King, who is a member of both the Senate Armed Services Committee and the Intelligence Committee, emphasized that "What this strike was not, and I think it's fortunate that that's the case, was a strike against the Assad regime itself and an attempt to intervene in the civil war."

King, who is an Independent who caucuses with Democrats, was not convinced, however, by President Donald Trump's boast of "Mission Accomplished."

"I think it is very difficult to say mission accomplished if the mission is to deter the use of chemical weapons. We hope that will be the case. But we did a strike a year ago for that same purpose, and it was deemed a success, but the chemical weapons have continued to be used."

The senator added that there should be no illusions about the brutality of the Syrian regime.

"They're killing their people daily," King said. "This morning, they're bombing again without chemical weapons and still killing people, their own citizens. So, yes, getting involved in terms of chemical weapons is an important national interest, but let's not kid ourselves that somehow, if we stop chemical weapons from being used, the horror of what's going on over there is going to somehow stop as well."

When asked if evidence of the chemical weapons attack was presented to Congress prior to Friday night's strike, King said that "They did notify the leadership of the Congress on Friday before the strike, but I'm unaware that they presented definitive evidence of what the use of the chemical weapons was."

He added that "We got updated briefings over the weekend from the Defense Department about the strike, and they indicated that they had confidence that chemical weapons had been used, but they didn't supply the evidence.

"Now, there are going to be some classified briefings this week. I'm sure we will have more information. But, certainly, they believe that they had the evidence that these chemical weapons had been used."

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The missile strike on Syria was "within our national interest and justified" to take out its chemical weapons capacity, Maine Sen. Angus King told CNN's State of the Union on Sunday.King, who is a member of both the Senate Armed Services Committee and the Intelligence...
sen. angus king, syria, chemical weapons, syrian president bashar al-assad, president donald trump
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2018-12-15
Sunday, 15 April 2018 07:12 PM
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