President Donald Trump late Thursday sent nearly 60 tomahawk missiles to destroy a Syrian airbase where its believe the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has stockpiled chemical weapons.
The strike came in response to the Assad regime earlier in the week dropping chemical bombs on their own people — sarin gas to be exact — which resulted in at least 86 deaths and dozens of others injured. Trump, as well as U.N. ambassador Nikki Haley, said the attack was finally too much and the U.S. had to respond.
That response came in the form of 59 tomahawk missiles, which is a long-range, subsonic cruise missile. The missiles are between 18-20 feet long each, have a range of more than 1,000 nautical miles and carry 1,000 pounds of munitions. The missiles are also incredibly accurate and can be delivered within feet of their intended target.
Thursday’s tomahawks were launched by two U.S. Navy destroyers, the USS Porter and the USS Ross, which are stationed in the eastern Mediterranean Sea and targeted the al-Shayrat air base.
According to video of the air base captured Friday, the strikes appeared to be successful. Video shows destroyed buildings, damaged hangars and sections of a damaged runway.
Initial reports from the Pentagon indicated that the airbase was “severely damaged” or “completely destroyed.” However, according to new reports, the Assad regime has been able to launch more airstrikes from the Shayrat airbase, including on the city they just attacked with the chemical weapons.
That city, Khan Sheikhoun, is a rebel stronghold. The rebels are fighting against the Assad regime.