Politics should stop at the water’s edge.
After Donald Trump ordered a missile strike against Syria in response to a chemical weapons attack, pundits expected office holders – especially Republicans – to rally around the Commander-in-Chief.
But establishment Republicans had a surprising reaction.
John McCain, Lindsey Graham, and Marco Rubio are the three biggest warmongers in Congress.
Their answer to every foreign policy crisis is bombing and invasion.
And they had harsh words for Trump after his decision to launch the strike in Syria.
Some Trump supporters were upset over the strike because Trump had campaigned against an interventionist foreign policy in the Middle East.
Some also worry the strike could lead to a costly war for a regime change.
But Rubio, Graham, and McCain blasted Trump for not going far enough.
In fact, McCain even blamed Trump for the gas attack that led to the bombing.
“Republican Sen. John McCain said Sunday the Trump administration is at least partly to blame for Syria using chemical weapons against its own people.
“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,” the Arizona senator said on CBS’ “Face the Nation.” “As I said, again, taking this action I support and was important.”
Tillerson had said in late March that the Syrian people would determine Assad’s fate.
McCain said the Trump administration needs to have a more concrete strategy in dealing with Syria and shouldn’t treat Thursday’s U.S. missile strikes as a “one-time deal.” He emphasized that just going after chemical weapons ignores how large a problem Syria has become.”
McCain was joined in the call for a more aggressive approach to Syria by his pro-war allies Graham and Rubio.
Graham even tried baiting Trump into escalating the conflict by claiming Syria’s dictator Bashar al-Assad had personally insulted Trump.
Politico also reports:
“Syrian President Bashar Assad is telling President Donald Trump “F you” by continuing to fly military aircraft from the base that United States tomahawk missiles struck on Thursday, Sen. Lindsey Graham said Sunday morning.
Following reports of a chemical attack in Syria, the U.S. military bombed a regime air base in Homs. Since the bombing, Syrian warplanes have continued to take off from that base.
“Here’s what I think Assad’s telling Trump by flying from this base: ‘F you.’ And I think he’s making a serious mistake,” Graham said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “Because if you’re an adversary of the United States and you don’t worry about what Trump may do on any given day, then you’re crazy.”
The South Carolina Republican said the defeat of the Islamic State is still the top priority. Referencing World War II, he said “ISIS should be Germany, and Assad should be Japan.”
Finally, Marco Rubio joined the war hawks in stabbing Donald Trump in the back.
Rubio – who often advocates for war across the globe – ripped Trump’s strategy in Syria.
He blasted Secretary of State Rex Tillerson by claiming – without evidence – that it was Tillerson’s remark that Assad could stay in power that had caused the chemical gas attack.
Rubio is also pushing war for a regime change in Syria, which Tillerson and Trump are resisting.
Politico reports on Rubio’s statements:
“There is no such thing as Assad, yes, but ISIS, no,” Rubio said in an interview with George Stephanopoulos of ABC’s “This Week.” on Sunday. “This focus that you can defeat ISIS as long as Assad is there is not true. They’re two sides of the same coin.”
“These people who have been killed and gassed and human rights violations against them will never accept Assad as their rightful ruler, and they will join or become radicalized in order to fight him,” he said. “I hope they’ll reconsider this idea that we’re going to get rid of ISIS and then we’ll hopefully use Assad and others to come up with a solution, it’s not going to work.”
Trump won the election by rejecting the establishment’s war mongering policies.
In fact, Graham and Rubio were two of the contenders Trump easily dispatched on his way to the GOP nomination.
He won both their home states in the primary and general election by blasting Hillary Clinton, Rubio, and Graham as politicians who advocate for war at the drop of hat without considering the cost to the United States.
Trump supporters are worried these establishment war cheerleaders are trying to drag Trump away from his successful “America First” message and into a costly war of occupation in Syria.