Despite supporting Trump’s airstrike on a Syrian Base last week, Sen. John McCain is still a bit critical of Trump administration’s role in the Syrian chemical attack the led to the airstrike. On CBS’s Face the Nation, McCain said, “I think it probably was partially to blame. And Secretary [Rex] Tillerson basically saying the same thing after kind of contradicting himself and then saying the same thing argues vigorously for a plan and a strategy.”
Just a couple of weeks before the chemical attack, Tillerson said that the Syrian people would have to decide what to do with Assad, essentially saying that America would have nothing to do with it.
McCain, unhappy with Trump’s lack of a Syrian plan, is hoping that Trump doesn’t treat the airstrike as a “one-time deal.” He stressed that only responding to the chemical weapon attack disregards how severe the situation in Syria has become. Unfortunately, that seems to be exactly what Trump is planning to do, as the White House reported that the airstrike was essentially nothing more than a bluff.
McCain is most critical of Tillerson, especially for how the Secretary of State thinks America should deal with Syria. Tillerson wants to focus on destroying ISIS before attempting to stabilize the country. That’s not enough for McCain, who is also concerned about Assad’s war crimes. “There’s a lot of war crimes that are taking place…I do not agree with the secretary is that you have to just concentrate on ISIS,” McCain said. “We can walk and chew gum.”