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Syria, Russia Would Be 'Insane' to Retaliate Over US Airstrikes, Former US Ambassador Says

Matthew Kazin

Ryan Crocker, the former U.S. ambassador to Syria, said on Sunday that retaliation by Russia or Syria over the U.S. airstrikes last week would be “insane.”

“We all know what the differentials of power are here. Our power is overwhelming. They would not like to see it applied, and I don’t think they’ll take that chance,” Crocker told Maria Bartiromo during an interview on “Sunday Morning Futures.”

In the wake of the airstrikes on a military base in Syria after a deadly chemical attack on civilians, Russia announced it was suspending cooperation of its communication link with the U.S. that protects pilots flying missions over the war-torn country.

“I think that is a major mistake on the part of Moscow… they’re actually putting their own forces in greater jeopardy,” Crocker said. “It would be to Moscow’s benefit to have these basic lines of communication. So they will lose more than we will.”

Crocker, who served as ambassador to Syria from 1998-2001, praised President Trump for his handling of the situation in Syria and for moving a Navy strike group toward the Korean peninsula, as tensions with North Korea intensify.

This week, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is set to meet with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in Moscow. Crocker said he hopes the U.S. will take a more “aggressive” position with Russia.

“When they accuse us of violating Syria’s sovereignty, we should be right back in their face saying they are protecting and abetting a mass-killer who uses chemical weapons,” Crocker stated.

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