Some allies of President Donald Trump have cast this week’s coordinated air raid in Syria as evidence that he is willing to demonstrate more resolve in that war-torn nation than his predecessor.
President Barack Obama received significant criticism for the perception that his administration was weak in its response to reports of chemical weapons attacks by the Syrian government against its own people.
One Syrian refugee who survived such an attack in 2013 recently expressed a similar point of view.
In a CNN interview following the overnight operation by U.S., British and French forces, Kassem Eid expressed approval of the raids but called for additional military commitments.
Initial celebration among Syrian refugees were dampened, he said, when Defense Secretary James Mattis emphasized that the operation consisted of a one-time strike.
Eid spoke directly to Trump when he recommended a compassionate response to allegations of continued attacks on the Syrian people.
“I would love to buy you a beer and just sit in front of you and tell you how bad it is in Syria,” he said. “How you should listen to your heart, not listen to your generals.”
He said the air strikes in response to reports of continued chemical attacks earlier this month showed that Trump’s heart is “at least a lot more bigger” than Obama’s.
Still, Eid said the U.S. must demonstrate a “real long-term commitment” to “hold war criminals accountable” in Syria or risk creating a vacuum that could be filled by “ISIS 2.0.”