WASHINGTON (CBSNewYork/AP) — President Donald Trump is condemning the chemical attack in Syria that left 72 people dead as an “affront to humanity” that “cannot be tolerated.”

Trump made the comments at the start of a joint news conference with Jordanian King Abdullah II bin Al-Hussein at the White House on Wednesday.

A suspected chemical attack in a town in Syria’s rebel-held northern Idlib province killed dozens of people on Tuesday in one of the worst attacks in the country’s six-year civil war. The Trump administration has blamed the attack on the government of President Bashar Assad.

“When you kill innocent children, innocent babies — babies, little babies — that crosses many, many lines. Beyond the red line. Many, many lines,” Trump said.

“These heinous actions by the Assad regime cannot be tolerated,” he added.

“This is happening on our watch, on our conscience,” Abdullah said.

As a private citizen, Trump repeatedly urged the U.S. to avoid direct involvement in the Syrian civil war. But now he’s president and his thinking has evolved.

As CBS2’s Tony Aiello reported, Trump blamed the Obama administration for a “mess” in Syria, but added, “I now have responsibility.”

He criticized former President Barack Obama for setting a red line in Syria on the use of banned weapons but failing to enforce it.

“I think that set us back a long ways, not only in Syria but in many other parts of the world,” he said.


[graphiq id=”Lbn4aZFSHr” title=”Fatalities from Terrorist Attacks in Syria” width=”600″ height=”561″ url=”https://w.graphiq.com/w/Lbn4aZFSHr” ]

Trump acknowledged Jordan’s role in hosting refugees from the conflict in Syria and announced that the U.S. will contribute more funds to the country for humanitarian assistance, saying that the goal of “any responsible refugee policy” is to pave the way for refugees to return home.

Trump also said that together the U.S. and Jordan will defeat ISIS, adding that the fight will be “shorter” than many people think.

“We will destroy ISIS and we will protect civilization, we have no choice,” Trump said.

Abdullah said he and President Trump had a “good round of talks,” and thanked the U.S. for their partnership and its “key” role in the fight against terrorism.

“Terrorism has no borders, no nationality, no religion,” Abdullah said, calling on other countries to help defeat the “international scourge.” “We should not expect the U.S. to do the heavy lifting, the heavy lifting has to be done by all of us in the international community.”

Trump met with the Jordanian leader Wednesday for the second time since the president’s inauguration.

“Working together the United States and Jordan can help bring peace and stability to the Middle East and in fact the entire world and we will do that,” Trump said.

There are questions as to whether Wednesday’s meeting can lead to the restarting of stalled Israeli-Palestinian talks.

Meanwhile, the United States ambassador to the United Nations dismissed claims the chemical weapons came from a rebel stockpile, blaming President Assad and his allies in Russia.

“Assad has no incentive to stop using chemical weapons as long as Russia continues to protect his regime from consequences,” Ambassador Nikki Haley said Wednesday at an emergency meeting at the UN.

“We need to do more,” Sen. John Barrasso of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee said. “This activity must stop, and it may be important for the United States to step in.”

How will the Trump administration respond now? The president refused to tip his hand.

“Militarily, I don’t like to say where I’m going or what I’m doing,” he said.

At a summit last week, Arab leaders renewed an offer they made in 2002 — recognition of Israel by Arab nations in exchange for the creation of a Palestinian state. Abdullah told Trump that Arab leaders are serious about achieving a “historic reconciliation between Israel” and the Arab world.

“It is the most comprehensive framework for lasting peace and it ensures statehood for the Palestinians, but also security, acceptance and normal ties for Israel with all Arab countries and hopefully all Islamic countries,” Abdullah said.

Earlier, there was a shakeup at the White House.

The president’s key adviser, Steve Bannon, was removed from his controversial role on the National Security Council. Despite Bannon’s master’s degree in national security studies, critics complained a political operative had no place on the council.

The move was portrayed by the White House as a vote of confidence in National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster, rather than a demotion for Bannon.

Trump did not mention the move during his remarks.

The visit of the Jordanian royals also marked the most high-profile day in recent weeks for First Lady Melania Trump. She and the equally glamorous Queen Rania of Jordan greeted students at a Washington, D.C. charter school and attended a seminar on empowering young people through education.

(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

Comments (18)
  1. The so-called “intelligence experts” that are saying Hassan did this are the same ones that didn’t see al Qaeda coming on 9/11, said Saddam had WMDs, Mubarak had to go, and Libya would be better w/o Ghaddafi.

  2. wootendw says:

    “When you kill innocent children, innocent babies — babies, little babies — that crosses many, many lines. Beyond the red line. Many, many lines,” Trump said.

    Mr. President, if I were you, I should shut up about ‘lines’. You invited this by listening to Republican warmongers and blaming Obama for not following through on his stupid ‘red line’. Now, you are under pressure to follow through on yours.

    Moreover, Mr. President, the idea that Syria would use CWs at this stage of the war, when they are winning with more effective legal weapons, is ludicrous. If CWs really were detonated, they may, indeed, have been rebel stockpiles and they may have even been placed in target positions on the instructions of USG foreign policy personnel – like the ones who claimed Saddam had WMDs. This so-called CW attack came just after Tillerson said that Assad’s fate was up to the Syrian people, meaning elections.

    BTW, Mr. President, Assad has been elected twice, most recently in 2014 and would win an election again even though he is an Alawite and his country has a majority Sunni population. That’s partly because his highly educated British wife, Asma, is a Sunni. The US foreign policy establishment has been arming terrorists to overthrow Assad for years, claiming the Syrian people don’t want him. They cannot afford for him to win an election as it would expose the evil in their operations.

    Now, you’re trapped, Mr. President. If you don’t ‘follow through’, you will be continue to be called a Putin ‘stooge’ or the like. And, if you do follow through, Washington, DC – and much of civilization – could be turned into radioactive ash.

  3. Robert Cat says:

    So we’re going to war with Assad and/or Russia over Syria? Trump said he wasn’t going to get us in these expensive wars we get nothing out of. I thought it was America First, that’s why I voted for him.

  4. That was an ISIS stockpile that was hit.

  5. Please, please, please do not get pulled into the Middle East!! Focus on N. Korea, China and the Asia-Pacific region instead. Sick of hearing these Syria/Russia war drums…

  6. https://www.infowars.com/report-soros-linked-group-behind-chemical-attack-in-syria/

    Everyone ought to be careful not tom jump to conclusions. The truth is out there somewhere.

  7. Trump jumped the gun. It was the rebels that did it, and he’ll have to back track.

  8. “Anti-racists” say there’s a RACE problem. They say it’ll be solved when non-Whites pour into ALL & ONLY White nations and “assimilate” to get a brown mixture.

    They say only White nations have this RACE problem; they say non-White nations are fine.

    If I object to my own genocide these “anti-racists” say I am a naziwhowantstokillsixmillionjews.

    They say they’re anti-racist. What they are is anti-White.

    Anti-racist is a codeword for anti-White.

  9. Eric Turner says:

    I will bet any amount of money Israel did this to keep pressure on Syria, they are vile human beings that would not think twice about using stolen chemical weapons on civilians for their own gains, they use white phosphorous all the time ion civilians in Israel which is banned weapon.

    1. Completely agree. It is in the best interest of the MIC to keep the focus on Syria/Iran/Russia, as opposed to N. Korea/China.

  10. Doug Forbes says:

    No. The US is not going to war in Syria.

  11. Kae Mechiso says:

    I do not see any strategic political or military benefit for Assad in using chemical weapons on “civilians”. The “rebels” on the other hand stand to generate a lot of support for themselves by killing their own children or someone else’s Syrian children.

  12. “Working together the United States and Jordan can help bring peace and stability to the Middle East and in fact the entire world and we will do that,” Trump said…TRANSLATION…Working together with our VASSALS we are going to create the GREATER ISRAEL in the Middle East.

  13. Donald Trump is showing day after day that He is another PUPPET OF THE DEEP STATE and the MILITARY INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX…Shame on YOU, Donald Trump for been another marionette of the INTERNATIONAL ZIONIST CENTRAL BANKING MAFIA.

  14. Another stupid accusation by the suppliers of CHEMICAL WEAPONS TO THE INTERNATIONAL MERCENARY TERRORISTS, blaming Assad for the actions of the CIA/MOSSAD/MI6/SAUDIA ARABIA/QATAR/JORDAN, remember when General Clark refers to the Mideast conquest by the U.S. military, it ought to be understood that these illicit wars of aggression(BY THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA) have been advanced in the interest of establishing a Greater Israel. In other words much of U.S. foreign policy revolves around securing Israel’s domination of the Middle East.

  15. A short-lived (in the media) report concluded that the REBELS were responsible for the attack.
    Assad prevents the spread of islamist rule in the Mideast, as would have Ghadafi & Mubarek.

  16. Assad shouldn’t of gotten president Trump mad at him… curtains for sure!

  17. Jks Yates says:

    Our idiotic President stood there WHINING!!! Dear God!

Leave a Reply