The majority of Republicans appear to strongly support the President’s actions in the attack on Syria despite contradictions with the Constitution and questions about it being in the national interest, as well as the veracity of the evidence against Assad. From a position of the status of our President, future working relationships, the belief that he is not one to be trifled with and his ability to demand respect when conducting foreign policy around the globe, there is no doubt that this is being perceived by most as a big win for President Trump and for America. It’s unlikely he’ll be forced to use the back end stairs when departing Air Force One by any nation he visits.
Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich is one of those giving high marks to President Trump for his actions. He notes that the American people had “watched eight years of Barack Obama give big speeches and tiny actions and they watched him fail totally on Syria. And Trump, within 48 hours, had changed that whole narrative.” He then draws a comparison to President Reagan with Libya following Jimmy Carter.
Gingrich says, “I think the world saw all of a sudden, this is a president who’s not afraid to use force, he’s not going to tell you about it in advance, he’s not going to signal it, but if you push him to the wall he’ll hit and he’ll hit very hard.” Gingrich points out his “extraordinary national security team, so they’re able to put this together pretty fast, and I thought last night they did a very good job.”
Cavuto asks if the statements by President Trump that he had no interest in regime change prior to this action had emboldened Assad, if the Syrian regime had misinterpreted it as a license to “do whatever the hell it wanted to do,” and miscalculated.
Gingrich makes the point that the Syrians and the Russians both lied when they attested to having gotten rid of the chemical weapons and that Obama accepted the lie at face value. He notes that we gave very little notice to the Russians that we were coming in and that they needed to stay out of the way, that there was no negotiating involved.
He says that was an important reminder to Putin that, in the end, we are vastly bigger than they are, we project power radically better than they do, and that they would have an impossible task if they wanted to really contest Syria with us.”
Gingrich adds, “I think the Syrians need to take notice here. If they do something really stupid and destructive again, I think Trump will hit em again. And I think that they need to understand this is a president that is willing to be very clear and then to be very forceful.”
He has no doubt the Russians would “just stand idly by” if we were to conduct a subsequent attack, saying, “Their navy’s ability to survive is zero. If they were to get into a fight with us, they literally would have zero potential to survive. They could hurt us but they would disappear in the process.”
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