The White House claimed on Monday that it has a “potential” evidence that the Bashar Assad government was preparing for another chemical weapons attack that “would likely result if the mass murder of civilians, including innocent children.”
— Sean Spicer (@PressSec) 27 June 2017
Press Secretary Sean Spicer said that the activities were similar to preparations taken before an April 2017 attack in Idlib. He added that if “Mr. Assad conducts another mass murder attack using chemical weapons, he and his military will pay a heavy price.” No more details were provided.
The problem with the April attack is that the White House and the Pentagon as well as numerous US speicla services have still failed to provide any proof that the Syrian government was behind the alleged attack.
US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley further accused Russia and Iran for any future “chemical attacks” that may take place in Syria.
Any further attacks done to the people of Syria will be blamed on Assad, but also on Russia & Iran who support him killing his own people.
— Nikki Haley (@nikkihaley) 27 June 2017
However, it looks that the Pentagon and the US State Department have been suprised by the White House announcement.
The Los Angeles Times (source):
“Several State Department officials typically involved in coordinating such announcements said they were caught completely off guard by the warning, which didn’t appear to be discussed in advance with other national security agencies. Typically, the State Department, the Pentagon and U.S. intelligence agencies would all be consulted before the White House issued a declaration sure to ricochet across foreign capitals.”
The New York Times (source):
“Several military officials were caught off guard by the statement from President Trump’s press secretary, but it was unclear how closely held the intelligence regarding a potential chemical attack was.”