The CIA Director Mike Pompeo broke out the news that recent US airstrikes on Syria killed almost 200 Russians. While speaking to the lawmakers earlier this month, Pompeo said that in February the US strikes against the Syrian regimes also killed a couple hundred Russians. However, no statement is yet made by the US officials on how many affected by the strikes.
During a confirmation hearing in Washington, Pompeo said that now Russia has met their match and as a result, their couple of people died.
The previous secretary of the state Rex Tillerson was removed from his duties in February as Trump tweeted Tillerson’s exit. Pompeo is appointed as the secretary of the state purely on Trump’s recommendation. The shake-up story didn’t end here as Pompeo’s announcement was followed by the announcement of John Bolton, the former U.S. Ambassador to the U.N., as the new national security advisor replacing H.R. McMaster.
McMaster and Bolton both discussed adopting a harsh stance against Russia which later on was accused by the US as an interference in the foreign affairs of other countries. Back in 2011, Russia started his war against the regime of Assad, a year after the US intervened against ISIS.
The offensive stances of both Bolton and McMaster destroyed the wide-spread caliphate of ISIS. However, the tension between local and international forces have increased since then. January’s Turkish invasion caused many US-backed Kurds to pull out against ISIS. Back in February, a coalition backup was called by the Syrian Democratic Forces after the Democratic Forces came under fire by pro-Syrian government forces. In response to this coalition, US air bombed many attacks and killed many unknowns. After that Russia acknowledged that some of the Russians were also involved in the coalition.
The second incident took place days later after the first one as the US army bombed a T-72 tank which was being operated by the pro-Syrian government forces. After that, the 3rd incident was avoided as James Mattis, the US defense secretary, reported that a meeting between U.S. joint chiefs of staff and the Russian counterpart caused pro-Syrian government forces to retreat. However, there is no reason to think that Moscow was in command of these Russians, said Mattis.
Both Russia and the US have conflicting claims about the recent chemical attacks on Syria. However, later Mattis said that they are still assessing the culprit of chemical weapons attack and also asked for a support from UK, Saudia Arabia, and France in this matter.
Russian ambassador Alexander Zasypkin has denied all these claims and said that both the US missiles were under threat of the Russian interception referencing to the previous warning of Russia. On the other hand, Trump criticised Russia badly on social media as he tweeted that a missile would hit Syria soon but after a day of this announcement, he tweeted again saying that he never said when an attack would take place on Syria, may be very very soon.
Administration hearings of both Pompeo’s and Bolton will have a lot more impact than expected in the context of the confrontation with Russia. Meanwhile, Trump has also ordered to renegotiate the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran. The newly appointed secretary of the state and the national security advisor will also look at the crisis with North Korea and a meeting is expected between Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un by May.
James Mattis also reported that he was ready to present the plan of taking military actions against the Syrian government to President Trump. Mattis further said that his allies were still assessing whether Syrian President was behind those chemical attacks or not. While speaking to the media, Mattis added that they are ready to take military action if and when the President decides it to be necessary.
Mattis also visited White House for a meeting with Trump on this topic. However, China and Iran supported Russia and said that they will not defend any sort of US attack on Syria.