Donald Trump making a speech

Photo by Gage Skidmore/Flickr (CC-BY-SA)

Trump blames Obama for deadly Syrian chemical weapon strike

Critics are calling the president a hypocrite.


David Gilmour


President Donald Trump criticized a devastating chemical weapon attack in Syria, which has killed at least 70 civilians, as a “consequence” of his predecessor’s foreign policy.

Launched by forces loyal to Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad on the rebel-held area of Idlib Province, the toxic gas was dropped from planes killing dozens and leaving more than 100 people in critical condition—many of them children.

In an official but delayed statement, Trump lashed out at Assad first as “heinous” and “reprehensible” before blaming the attack as “a consequence of the past administration’s weakness and irresolution.” He claimed that former President Barack Obama’s failure to approach to Syria in 2012 created the conditions for the attack.

Online, however, many were quick to point out an apparent hypocrisy in the president’s remarks and revived old 2013 tweets in which Trump pleads with Obama to not intervene in the war-torn country.

Appearing on CNN on Tuesday to discuss the attack, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) went so far as to call out Trump for his own inaction over Syria as “another disgraceful chapter in American history.”

The illegal use of the chemical weapons has been internationally condemned, and this weeks attack caused the United Nations to call an emergency meeting. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson also spoke out against the attack, but he said Russia and Iran, the Syrian government’s allies, “also bear great moral responsibility for these deaths.”

Only days before the strike, in what critics called an appeasement to Russia, Tillerson dismissed the idea that Trump wanted to interfere in the region, saying, the “longer term status of President Assad will be decided by the Syrian people.”

Speaking with a Florida radio station, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) called Tillerson’s comments “concerning” and implied to Syrian leadership that the U.S. would not intervene.

“In this case now, we have very limited options and look, it’s concerning that the secretary of state, 72 hours ago or a week ago, last Friday, said that the future’s up to the people in Syria on what happens with Assad. In essence almost nodding to the idea that Assad was gonna get to stay in some capacity,” Rubio said, according to CNN.

The violation of international law through the use of chemical weapon, in what is already being described as the worst atrocity of the war, is a test of the administration’s restraint and resolve.

The Daily Dot