Local politicians react to US air strikes in Syria

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Many local politicians have voiced support for the air strikes the U.S. and allies in Syria, which came a week after an alleged chemical weapons attack by the Syrian government killed scores of people.

Republican congressman Peter King, who is on the Homeland Security and Intelligence committees, said the air strikes in Syria were absolutely necessary in response to the chemical weapons attacks on innocent men, women and children.

"Its important to have the British and the French with us that makes it a coalition it's not the U.S. just going alone, it's not just Donald Trump going alone," he said.

Democratic Sen. Bob Menedez, a ranking member of the Senate Foreign Committee, agreed with King.

"The president has asserted authority under article 2 of the constitution for these strikes," he said. "But any sustained military action in Syria would require congressional authorization," he added.

"A pinpointed, limited action to punish and hopefully deter President Assad from doing this again is appropriate, but the administration has to be careful about not getting us into a greater and more involved war in Syria," Sen. Chuck Schumer said.

Russia condemned the air strikes and called for an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council Saturday to denounce the military action. The motion was denied.

"In a sign of cynical disdain, a group of countries decided to take military action,"  Russia's UN Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia said.

Russian President Vladmir Putin said the strikes will only make things worse for civilians in Syria.

"Through its actions, the U.S. makes the already catastrophic humanitarian situation in Syria even worse and brings suffering to civilians. In fact, the U.S. panders to the terrorists who have been tormenting the Syrian people for seven years, leading to a wave of refugees fleeing this country and the region," Putin said in an official statement.

U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley fired back.

"If the Syrian regime uses this poisonous gas again, the United States is locked and loaded," she said. "The pictures of dead children were not fake news. they were a result of the regime's barbaric inhumanity."

President Trump hailed the multi national effort, declaring "mission accomplished" on Twitter. He thanked France and the U.K. for their coordination.

While Russia had boasted they were able to intercept and shoot down missiles, the Pentagon said that was not the case. Officials said 105 missiles were launched and hit their targets, crippling the heart of Syria's chemical weapons infrastructure.

"Russia is going to have to make a decision whether or not they are going to ally themselves with outlaw countries like Syria or they are going to be with the civilized world," King said.

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