U.S. military forces tonight launched a few dozen Tomahawk cruise missiles at Syrian military targets.
Donald Trump ordered the strikes in retaliation for Syrian government forces’ use of chemical weapons on civilians, killing dozens of them, including children.
It was a reprehensible act. The thought occurs to me: The strikes hit military targets, but why not zero in on where the dictator, Bashar al-Assad, hangs his hat?
It’s not unprecedented. I recall when the Persian Gulf War started in late 1990. The first weapon was a Tomahawk cruise missile launched from the USS Wisconsin, the World War II-era battleship that had been brought back into active duty. The ship’s target? Saddam Hussein’s palace in Baghdad!
Saddam commanded the Iraqi military that had invaded Kuwait. He served two roles in Iraq: head of state and the supreme commander of the Iraqi military. President George H.W. Bush, thus, considered Saddam to be a military target.
Assad is just as ham-handed a dictator as Saddam Hussein had become. He also has a tight rein on his military forces. Therefore, he is a military — as well as a political — figure.
We should hit Syrian military targets. What the Syrian government has done is reprehensible in the extreme.
It does nothing, though, without the approval of the dictator who is in charge.
Make the dictator a target, too.