Defense Secretary General Mattis has sent a warning to Syrian President Bashar al- Assad advising him of the mistake he would be making if chemical weapons were ever used again.

According to Independent: In a statement addressing last week’s cruise missile strike on Sharyat airfield, General Mattis called it a “measured response to the Syrian government’s use of chemical weapons”.

He added:

The President directed this action to deter future use of chemical weapons and to show the United States will not passively stand by while Assad murders innocent people with chemical weapons, which are prohibited by international law and which were declared destroyed.

The Syrian government would be ill-advised ever again to use chemical weapons.

The strong rhetoric comes just days after Russia and Iran warned the US they would “respond with force” if their own “red lines” were crossed in Syria.

“What America waged in an aggression on Syria is a crossing of red lines. From now on we will respond with force to any aggressor or any breach of red lines from whoever it is and America knows our ability to respond well,” the joint command centre for powers allied with Mr Assad said.

Gen Mattis added:

“The assessment of the Department of Defence is that that strike resulted in the damage or destruction of fuel and ammunition sites, air defence capabilities, and 20 percent of Syria’s operational aircraft.

“The Syrian government has lost the ability to refuel or rearm aircraft at Sharyat airfield and at this point, use of the runway is of idle military interest.”

h/t: independent