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By Jonah Bennett
A U.S. defense official said Thursday evening that the Tomahawk missile strike against Syria is a “one-off” event.
This official stated the Pentagon intends the attack against the Syrian military base al-Shayrat to be a singular event, according to Reuters.
President Donald Trump ordered two U.S. destroyers in the eastern Mediterranean, the USS Porter and USS Ross, to fire more than 50 Tomahawk missiles, in an effort to target aircraft and infrastructure, such as ammunition supply bunkers and radars, that were believed to have been used in the chemical weapons attack on Tuesday at Idlib.
“Bashar al-Assad launched a horrible chemical weapons attack on innocent civilians,” Trump said in a statement Thursday evening. “Using a deadly nerve agent, Assad choked out the lives of helpless men, women and children. It was a slow and brutal death for so many. Even beautiful babies were cruelly murdered in this very barbaric attack. No child of God should ever suffer such horror.”
Pentagon spokesman Navy Capt. Jeff Davis said the U.S. “took extraordinary measures to avoid civilian casualties and to comply with the Law of Armed Conflict. Every precaution was taken to execute this strike with minimal risk to personnel at the airfield.”
Davis said the U.S. intelligence community determined that the chemical weapons attack could be traced back to the al-Shayrat air base. The point of the devastating missile strike at the base Thursday evening, Davis said, was to deter Assad from carrying out a chemical weapons attack ever again.
In order to avoid unnecessary casualties, Davis noted that the Russians were notified of the incoming strike using the deconfliction line.