By Bartholomew Sullivan Originally Appeared in The Ventura County Star
WASHINGTON – While some members of Congress representing Ventura County deemed Thursday night’s U.S. missile attack on a Syrian airbase a “necessary” response to the regime’s sarin gas attack on civilians, all said Friday that further military action there must come in consultation with Congress.
Sen. Kamala Harris, a Democrat, said President Donald Trump’s reaction to images of slaughtered children should prompt him to “rethink” his “misguided refugee policy.”
“Last night’s cruise missile strikes against the Syrian airfield that launched the chemical weapons attack was a limited but necessary response to those heinous acts, and I hope the intended message was received,” said Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein. “The United States cannot continue to stand by and watch (Bashar) al-Assad commit these atrocities.”
Rep. Steve Knight, R-Lancaster, said the missile attack on the Al Shayrat airfield was “warranted and necessary,” but also said he looked forward to Trump presenting “a comprehensive plan to Congress on U.S. strategy in Syria moving forward.” Knight added that Bashar al-Assad must be removed from power.
“The murder of innocent men, women, and children using sarin gas was a crime against humanity, for which President Bashar al-Assad must be held accountable,” Rep. Julia Brownley, D-Westlake Village, said Friday. “Going forward, President Trump must work to build an international coalition to stop this civil war and Congress must exercise its legal obligation to weigh in on any further action.”
Rep. Salud Carbajal, D-Santa Barbara, who also represents the city of Ventura, also called Assad’s actions a crime against humanity for which he must be held accountable.
“I am concerned, however, that the administration acted unilaterally, without seeking constitutional authorization from Congress,” Carbajal added. “Before any further U.S. military action is taken in Syria, the president must articulate a long-term strategy for the region and obtain congressional approval. To engage in further military action without a clear strategy would be a disservice to our men and women in uniform.”