Looks like there is some additional good news from the airstrikes in Syria tonight: not only were the strikes we conducted in coordination with Britain and France successful in hitting their selected targets, early local sources are reporting no civilian casualties (disregarding of course the obvious Russian/Syrian allied propaganda outlets).
In a briefing from the Pentagon earlier tonight, Secretary of Defense Gen. James Mattis described the avoidance of civilian casualties as a top priority.
“We did very close analysis,” said Mattis. “We did everything we could, in our intelligence assessment and our planning, to minimize to the maximum degree possible any chance of civilian casualties. We are very much aware this is difficult to do in a situation like this.”
Sec. Mattis: The U.S. did "everything we could" in minimizing civilian casualties pic.twitter.com/UgPyfWXkgE
— Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) April 14, 2018
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Joseph Dunford also commented that the avoidance of civilian casualties was an integral part of the planning, rejecting targets that had a “high risk of collateral damage and specifically the high risk of civilian casualties.”
"We had a number of targets to select from, and we did not select those with the high risk of collateral damage and specifically the high risk of civilian casualties," Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Joseph Dunford says https://t.co/bTaJ40jGwj pic.twitter.com/kiEy3f71un
— CBS News (@CBSNews) April 14, 2018
Local Syrian reporter Abdelaziz Alhamza reported that local sources in Syria were reporting that “no civilians had been killed and no civil locations have been targeted.”
— Abdalaziz Alhamza (@3z0ooz) April 14, 2018
John Noonan, an Air Force veteran who served as a national security and foreign policy adviser for Jeb Bush and Mitt Romney, retweeted Alhamza’s report with a comment that it was “hard to determine, but grateful for precision guided munitions.”
Hard to determine, but grateful for precision guided munitions https://t.co/daU9AGFwt9
— John Noonan (@noonanjo) April 14, 2018
Mattie confirmed that there were “no reports of losses” for either American or allied forces, according to CBS News, and that “this wave” of airstrikes were over.
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