Exclusive — Sebastian Gorka on Syria: ‘Trump Is Not a Neo-Conservative’; ‘This Is Not George Bush’

Sebastian Gorka joined SiriusXM host Rebecca Mansour and special guest host John Carney on Friday’s Breitbart News Tonight to discuss President Donald Trump’s strategy in ordering missile strikes on Syria.

Gorka described the military operations as a “surgical” and “very quick strike.”

Gorka added that the strikes were “meant to send a message [to] Bashar al-Assad, the mass murderer, and his sponsors, including Iran and Russia, that you cannot use illegal chemical weapons, and you will not be allowed to use them again against women and children. This is not a war, and this isn’t about al-Qaeda or ISIS. This is about the mass murder executed by Assad’s regime.”

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Gorka said the strikes served both symbolic and practical ends. He remarked, “These were clearly targets that were parts of the chemical weapons capacity of the Assad regime, a research facility in Damascus, a facility that was storing the precursor materials [and] chemicals used to create these weapons and other facilities used in the production of these weapons. So it isn’t just a signal, but it is very much a signal, as well, but it is also a crippling blow to the chemical weapons capacity of the Damascus government.”

Gorka cast Russia as a declining power. “Russia is a failing nation. It’s a one-horse town, and that horse, that pony, was gas and oil exports. America is now a net energy exporter for the first time, and Russia is a shadow of its former Soviet self. It’s good at rattling its rusty saber, but that’s about it. … We killed hundreds of Russian mercenaries in Syria when they threatened our forces. What was the Russian response? Nothing. They’re still a nuclear power. They’re still a bad actor. Vladimir Putin is still a former KGB colonel, but their capacity to be a serious global actor like the United States? That is not true.”

Gorka rejected characterizations of the strikes as resembling the Bush administration’s neo-conservatism. He claimed, “I’ll tell you one thing: Donald J. Trump is not a neo-conservative, and he never will be a neo-conservative. This is not George Bush, and this man believes the invasion and occupation of other people’s countries is fundamentally un-American, and he will never waver from that.”

Gorka said America should enforce international conventions prohibiting certain chemical weapons. He said, “But [Donald Trump] is also — I know the left doesn’t believe this for a second, but I can guarantee you this — he is a very compassionate human being, whether it’s meeting the survivors and the victims of the Parkland shooting or whether it’s seeing the children, the infants, foaming at the mouth, poisoned by that chlorine gas attack in Syria, and he knows that if we don’t do anything, nobody will. He believes in that saying: ‘Evil wins, very simply, when good men do nothing.’ This isn’t about regime change. This isn’t Iraq in 2003. He isn’t George Bush. But if America stands for truth, if America is that shining light on a hill, then we do not allow mass murderers to use chemical weapons. It is that simple.”

Gorka further rejected concerns of the strikes as elements of open-ended conflicts without clear objectives. He stated, “People need to listen to the president. … Listen to what he said. Listen to what Secretary Mattis said. Listen to what the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said. We are not involved in a civil war. We’re not changing the regime, and we’re not picking sides. Chemical weapons are illegal. You cannot use them. Nobody can use them. We don’t have them. Nobody should have them, and when you use them against women and children, guess what? We will respond. Again, this isn’t 2003. He’s not George Bush, and we’re not going to deploy 160,000 troops into Syria.”

Gorka continued, “If Assad consistently uses illegal weapons of a chemical nature and America does nothing when it can — which is immoral to begin with — but when we do nothing when we can, what message does that send to North Korea? What message does that send to al-Qaeda? What message does that send to Russia, to China? Do we want the next chemical attack to be in Israel [or] Jordan? Are you prepared for the ramifications of that eventuality? You nip this in the bud, now, and that’s what the president is doing, and he is absolutely right in doing that. Have faith in Donald J. Trump. I worked for him. I know the man. Trust him.”

Mansour asked Gorka what lies ahead for the U.S. in Syria.

Gorka replied, “There’s only one person who knows the answer to that question, and he’s called Bashar al-Assad. The Syrian response to our action is the question right now. Will they make an effort to rid themselves of chemical weapons, but not in the way that Obama said they had and Kerry said they had and the Russians said they had? Will they actually do it this time? Will we see a concerted effort from certain sponsor states to exert pressure on that regime? Only time will tell. We have the capacity to do this again, but the ball is firmly located in the court of Damascus, and it’s up to Assad as to how he reacts. Time will tell.”

Breitbart News Tonight broadcasts live Monday through Friday on SiriusXM’s Patriot channel 125 from 9:00 p.m. to midnight Eastern (6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Pacific).

Follow Robert Kraychik on Twitter @rkraychik.


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