US attack on a Syrian airbase

Caroline PRU House of Commons

It appears almost certain chemical weapons have been used against innocent civilians in Syria and I believe the United States, as the world’s superpower, was right to respond.


There has been damage to the military base and loss of life, which is always painful, but this warning shot was limited in scope and strategic in its target. It is obviously designed to head off future chemical attacks and this, in my view, makes it proportionate.


It was not sanctioned by the UN, but the President’s action has been endorsed by other world leaders, including our Prime Minister and Defence Secretary, which I feel is important and right.


Emboldened by Russian and Iranian support, Assad has acted with impunity and visited great suffering on his own people for quite some time now. It has been the existentialist threat of Isis which has shielded him from greater international response.


That, and a belief the world would stand by.  Perhaps last night’s action will begin to change that dynamic.