Sen. Warner: ‘Coherent strategy’ still needed for Syria

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — It has been almost a week since a U.S. airstrike on a Syrian airbase, but questions still remain.

Sen. Mark Warner (D-Virginia) wants answers.

“It’s been a few days. I’ll give them a few more days, but my patience is running thin,” he said.

After the airstrike, Warner asked President Donald Trump and his administration for a “coherent strategy” moving forward. Days later, he’s still looking for it.

“Not only have I not heard a coherent strategy, we were promised as well an update from the White House on what legal basis they were using for this strike in Syria,” he said.

Warner says it is a complex issue. He called Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s use of chemical weapons a “heinous crime” that “could not go unpunished.”

But Warner wants more details about where the U.S. is headed next because it’s personal to Virginia.

“When Americans go into action and go to war, Virginians are always the first in line,” he said.

The senator says that is because of the high military presence in the commonwealth.

“Virginians will do their duty, but it’s one of the reasons why we so desperately need a coherent strategy from the president and the administration before we put more Virginians in harm’s way.”

Since the airstrike, there have been conflicting statements from the press secretary and others tied to the administration.

“We hear from our Ambassador to the United Nations that Assad has to go. You hear from the Secretary of State, no, ISIS is our top priority, not Assad,” said Warner.

Warner says if the president wants to continue military operations in Syria, he should first get the approval of Congress.

“Get us on record either being supportive or not.”

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