Beltway Insider: Trump Bombs Syria; Putin/Assad; Egypt’s Bloody Sunday; Sweden/Norway; WH Bickering; Gorsuch

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President Donald Trump skirted a fine legal line as he launched a decisive airstrike against Syria's Bashar al Assad targeting the airfield used to launch chemical weapons against his own people causing the deaths of innocent civilians.

According to Gallup, President Trump's job approval, over the past week, increased two percentage points to 40% of those polled who approve of his effectiveness as President and those who disapprove of his effectiveness as President decreased three percentage points to 54%. 

Trump Bombs Syria

President Trump, on behalf of the innocent victims of Tuesday chemical weapons attack, launched an airstrike consisting of 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles Thursday destroying the Syrian airfield used to launch the chemical weapons.

"Today's chemical attack in Syria against innocent people, including women and children, is reprehensible and cannot be ignored by the civilized world. These heinous actions by the Bashar al-Assad regime are a consequence of the past administration's weakness and irresolution. President Obama said in 2012 that he would establish a "red line" against the use of chemical weapons and then did nothing. The United States stands with our allies across the globe to condemn this intolerable attack," President Trump said.

President Trump Issues Statement on Syria

  

My fellow Americans:  On Tuesday, Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad launched a horrible chemical weapons attack on innocent civilians.  Using a deadly nerve agent, Assad choked out the lives of helpless men, women, and children.  It was a slow and brutal death for so many.  Even beautiful babies were cruelly murdered in this very barbaric attack.  No child of God should ever suffer such horror.

 

Tonight, I ordered a targeted military strike on the airfield in Syria from where the chemical attack was launched.  It is in this vital national security interest of the United States to prevent and deter the spread and use of deadly chemical weapons.  There can be no dispute that Syria used banned chemical weapons, violated its obligations under the Chemical Weapons Convention, and ignored the urging of the U.N. Security Council.  

 

Years of previous attempts at changing Assad's behavior have all failed, and failed very dramatically.  As a result, the refugee crisis continues to deepen and the region continues to destabilize, threatening the United States and its allies.  

 

Tonight, I call on all civilized nations to join us in seeking to end the slaughter and bloodshed in Syria, and also to end terrorism of all kinds and all types.  We ask for God's wisdom as we face the challenge of our very troubled world.  We pray for the lives of the wounded and for the souls of those who have passed.  And we hope that as long as America stands for justice, then peace and harmony will, in the end, prevail.  

Violates War Powers Act

Since Thursday's retaliatory attack the Americans from media to private citizens have been debating if President Trump violated the War Powers Resolution of 1973, which calls for the president to notify congress before sending U.S. armed forces into combat.

Clearly the key issues in Thursday missile launch attack are the fine line between sending armed military into battle which he did not to launching a retaliatory strike from a Navy destroyers in the eastern Mediterranean.

Some argue the launch of missiles does not violate the War Powers Resolution and others argue the launch of unmanned missiles or landing of troops all equates to war actions.

The Timeline

Without legitimizing this presidency, the action appeared to be thought out with two days of meetings, consultations, options, and reviews taking place before the launch at 7:40pm EST, Thursday.  The missiles landed striking their targets one hour later at 8:40pm EST.

Tuesday, April 4, President Trump was informed of the Chemical Weapons attacks during his Daily Brief. He asked for updates and options. At 8:00pm Tuesday night, in a restricted meeting, preliminary options were presented and refined.

Wednesday, April 5, a restricted principals meeting, was held with interagency options and further guidance on refinement was issued. At 3:00pm a National Security meeting was held and the President briefed further. Each option was reviewed in detail and explored, defended, and questioned, and the decision was made to reconvene on Thursday.

At 1:30pm Thursday, April 6, the President convened a meeting aboard Air Force One, videoconferenced in the principals and again tabled the discussion. At 4:00pm, the president Secretary of State, Secretary of Defense, National Security Advisor, and other members of the National Security team met pulling in others on secure channel. The President gave the go ahead.

At 7:40:59pm, 59 Tomahawk missiles were launched from Navy destroyers in the Eastern Mediterranean.

President Trump returned to dinner with the President Xi of China who was informed of the launch.

The Vice President began the notification process calling congressional leaders and foreign heads of state.  

Putin Reacts

Russian President Vladimir Putin is collecting endorsements. Not for himself or his new found popularity but to denounce his new former best friend, President Donald Trump who without consulting the Russian leader launched an unprecedented attack against the "sovereign" Syria.

Putin who has vocally announced a "cooling off" in the warming up of U.S. Russian relations has also sought the President of Iran who has also agreed the "U.S. aggression against sovereign inadmissible."

Assad Newest Putin Pawn

The two leaders, President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin, have each continued to defend against persistent revelations and rumors of Russian involvement in the 2016 elections without ever completely silencing the accusations despite strong public relations campaigns on both sides.

In the past three weeks, the Russians had so ramped up the PR effort to change the public perception that Putin's top spin doctor, Dmitry Peskov, and Putin, himself, took questions presenting the "facts" Russian style.  

Peskov, recently made the rounds of Sunday morning Political talks shows evangelizing Russia new "poor me" status as the nation is demonized over the rumored belief of Putin involvement in the 2016 election.

One can gather that this ramped up PR campaign did nothing as Russian President Vladimir Putin came out the next week and in an unprecedented show of openness answered questions denying any involvement in the 2016 elections.

As no amount of spin was changing the global opinion there was only one option left for Putin. Allow your single ally to be used for the greater good.

What better way for Putin to hide any Russian involvement than to condemn an airstrike against Syria, a known and supported ally, vocally and publicly denounce the attack, visit other nations, and gather support against the action.  Surely that should put to rest any rumors and prove no allegiance exists.

Beltway Insider: Trump Set Backs; Flynn Paid; Columbia; Israel; Assad; Mexico's Penis Seat; Texting Killer

Egypt's Bloody Palm Sunday

Nearly fifty Coptic Christian worshipers were killed and hundreds injured in two gruesome and horrific suicide attacks in Egypt's northern cities of Alexandria and Tanta, in the Nile Delta region, during the Palm Sunday morning services.

Islamic State insurgents have claimed responsibility and have issued a statement of retribution in which the group attempted to take control of the people, by using incapacitating fear and will continue to bring much bloodshed and continued injury, hurt and heartache.

The two attacks this Palm Sunday, on what is considered a holy day for the Christian religion to celebrate the triumphant arrival of Jesus Christ into Jerusalem, were meant to send the message even the God you worship can't stop us.

The first bomb was placed under the seat, near the front church. Reports have said the majority the wounded were in the choir. The scene from inside the church show splatter and pools of blood, carnage, and wreckage.

The force of the explosion ripped bodies apart and sent severed limbs flying, the detonation also turned the furnishings, into projectiles, embedding glass and wood shards into the injured.

The second explosion occurred in Alexandria. Police station at the church doors, attempted to stop the second suicide bomber, who was wearing a suicide belt of explosives, from entering. They were killed as were six others in the explosion.

The Egypt MFA Spokesperson said via twitter "As we grieve the tragic and heartbreaking loss of Egyptian lives, it is still a failed attempt against our unity.  #united_on_PalmSunday"

Egypt's government has issued a three-month state of emergency.

Russia/Sweden/Norway On Alert After Bombing

Eleven people were killed Monday when twin explosions detonated inside subway trains in St. Petersburg, Russia.

President Trump expressed his deepest condolences to the victims and their loved ones, and to the Russian people.  He offered the full support of the United States Government in responding to the attack and bringing those responsible to justice.  Both President Trump and President Putin agreed that terrorism must be decisively and quickly defeated.

By the end of the week, the relationships between the two nations had suffered a breech with the retaliatory strikes ordered by Donald Trump.

Four people died in Stockholm Sweden, an 11-year-old girl on her way home from school and 15 others were injured, when a hijacked lorry truck was used to ram a crowd of Friday evening shoppers in an upscale area of the city.

Police report the driver was an Uzbekistan refugee denied asylum. He allegedly posted loyalty statements to the Islamic State on his Facebook page which is illegal in Sweden. Swedish prosecutors have also announced they have arrested a second person. Additionally, 500 persons have been questioned in the Friday afternoon attack. A total of five people are now being held for suspected crimes against the nation.

The people of Stockholm refused to allow themselves to fear instead covering the steps of the Sergels Torg, with candles and flowers to create a remembrance memorial to the fallen.

Police in Oslo, Norway, discovered a suspected bomb, on Saturday night, in the central part of Oslo. The suspected bomb was detonated in a controlled explosion. One person, a 17-year-old Russian citizen, was detained. No injuries were reported. Norwegian authorities raised the nations terror threat level.

WH Bickering – Bannon and Kushner Ordered to "work it out"

President Trump has taken the unusual step of ordering his two top advisers, Steve Bannon, Chief Strategist and Jared Kushner, Senior Adviser, and son-in-law, to bury the hatchet, preferably not in each other's backs, and get on the business of government.

The two, who from all accounts have deep differences in approach and beliefs of how government shuld be run. The mistrust deteriorated into name calling, in fighting and a split with White House staffers caught in the middle and having the choose sides. The tension, from all accounts became unbearable and spilled over into the public arena.

Soon the president who appears to respect and depend on both has ordered the two men to "work it out." Although Steve Bannon has issued some sort of ultimatum. No further developments have been released and the two were allegedly attempting to make peace at Mar-a-largo Friday.

Trump's Supreme Court Pick Fills Empty Seat

Well after the year long wait, the political wrangling, the debates, the sore loser rule changes, the Supreme Court is back at full membership with the appointment of Honorable Neil M. Gorsuch, formerly of the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals in Colorado.

"It is a great honor to announce the historic confirmation of Judge Neil M. Gorsuch as Associate Justice to the Supreme Court of the United States. Judge Gorsuch's confirmation process was one of the most transparent and accessible in history, and his judicial temperament, exceptional intellect, unparalleled integrity, and record of independence makes him the perfect choice to serve on the Nation's highest court. I would also like to thank Justice Scalia and his wife Maureen for their immeasurable service to this country.  Justice Scalia's legacy of fidelity to our laws and our Constitution will never be forgotten," President Trump said.

From all accounts the Associate Justice has three immediate duties on the highest court in the land, the first and one could argue the most important is cafeteria representative for the Justices. Gorsuch, if he is so fortunate will have to his credit a record as illustrious as Associate Justice Kagan who successfully lobbied for a yogurt machine.

The next two duties of which, like Cafeteria remain until the next junior associate justice is confirmed, opening the door, always, for all justices, and taking notes from the private conferences which determine the next set of cases to be heard.

For more information on President Donald Trump: www.whitehouse.gov

Sources: Whitehouse.gov, Wikipedia.com, 

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