Trump’s Syrian Strike Has No Visible Strategic Goal

By Marc Cooper (April 6, 2017)

Purely for domestic consumption and with the usual unforeseen consequences.

One consequence for sure: This “retaliatory” strike will do absolutely nothing to stop or resolve the war in Syria. It MIGHT be the beginning of a deeper American intervention in days to come but, frankly, I doubt it. And as horrific as the gas attack was, it was not aimed at the U.S. so I don’t get how this is “retaliation.”

Almost half million Syrians have already died in this conflict and millions have been displaced into neighboring countries while this Big Orange Putz is banning all Syrian refugees.

At this point, and I might be wrong, this cruise missile attack is probably just punctuating one of his talking points i.e. that he’s “not weak.” There is no other visible strategic goal.

This is one case where some collusion or at least consultations with the Russians is actually in order as they maintain Syrian air defenses, fly Russian combat aircraft, and have “advisors” embedded among Syrian troops.

The Pentagon, I assume, knows better than to have struck any Russians tonight. I certainly hope that is the case.

In the meantime…. I heard a dozen military analysts today speculating on what this inevitable action would mean, what its objective might be, and the most they could come up with is what I said above: It’s Trump “sending a message” he’s a tough guy.


Marc Cooper, a Nation contributing editor, is an associate professor of professional practice and director of Annenberg Digital News at the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism.

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