McCain Warns Syria Strike May Not be ‘One Off’: ‘Vladimir Putin Believes that We Are Weak’


While Senator John McCain joined his fellow Republicans (save for Rand Paul) in backing President Donald Trump‘s decision to launch 59 tomahawk missiles on a Syrian air field, he is concerned that some of his peers may be taking a victory lap when the campaign is just beginning.

Appearing on the Today show Friday, the Arizona Senator said he wouldn’t necessarily term this a “one off” military action because in his view, “Vladimir Putin believes that we are weak.”

“There’s a little too much euphoria this morning,” McCain said. “I think it’s a right thing to do. It’s a signal that the President of the United States is listening to the best national security team I’ve seen. But we have a long way to go.”

Specifically, McCain thinks that further “undescribed actions” are necessary to signal to Russian President Vladimir Putin that the U.S. means business on Syria.

I think the signal that was sent last night was not just for Bashar Al Assad. It was also for Putin. A lot of work needs to be done, that probably couldn’t have been accomplished without this beginning. But it is only the beginning. I think [Secretary of State Rex Tillerson] sits down, he talks to him, he says ‘Look, It’s not acceptable for you to support and propping up a regime that uses chemical weapons. Period. We find that unacceptable. And we’re going to take actions, undescribed actions, to prevent this kind of activity from continuing.’ And it has to be a strong message because Vladimir Putin believes that we are weak.

McCain continued:

“The United States is not an aggressive nation,” he said. “But there are certain threats to the United States of America that we would have to respond to and, at best, prevent.”

Watch above, via NBC.

[featured image, via screengrab]


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Joe DePaolo is a Senior Editor at Mediaite. Email him here: Follow him on Twitter: @joe_depaolo