Bashar Assad

Warning on Syria's chemical weapons is test of Trump's credibility, and of intelligence community he attacks

Warning on Syria's chemical weapons is test of Trump's credibility, and of intelligence community he attacks

The Trump administration has sent the kind of dire warning — that Syria is planning another chemical weapons attack and would pay “a heavy price” if it followed through — that requires a credible messenger to have a receptive national and foreign audience.

Yet the initial bafflement among U.S. defense officials after the warning came late Monday, coupled with the simultaneous distraction of President Trump's unrelated tweets, by Tuesday seemed to undercut the seriousness of the charge. More broadly, the episode is a test of the damage Trump has done to his and his administration's trustworthiness by his assaults on the U.S. intelligence community and other perceived...

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