SHOREWOOD, Minn. Mixed emotions. Torn. That is how the local Syrian-American community views the Trump administration, according to Rihab Naheel, a Syrian-American who lives in Shoreview.
“It’s pretty conflicting,” said Naheel. “Nobody wants bombs on their country, but at the same time, it was due. It was really due. Something has to be done.”
A proud member of the Twin Cities Syrian-American community, Naheel helps organize fundraisers for Syrian refugees and has helped a family of refugees resettle in Rochester.
Last week’s airstrike was the first direct military action taken by the US against the regime of Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad.
According to US officials, US warships launched 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles at the airbase that was home to the warplanes that carried out the chemical attacks.
President Trump told Fox News on Tuesday that the United States is “not going into Syria.”
“I’m not delusional. I know that this is a slap on the wrist or a warning sign to the Syrian government,’ said Naheel. “I am against any international military intervention or boots on the ground,” said Naheel, “because that will just cause more havoc and a lot of casualties.”
Naheel hopes that President Trump reconsiders his stance on Syrian refugees in the United States.
“I don't think that Mr. Trump has a deep understanding of what is going on in Syria and really cares about the Syrian cause. But I do have hopes in the future that he learns more, he listens to Syrians and to Syrian-Americans,” said Naheel.
She hopes that the Trump administration resumes “dialogue with the international community about safe zones for Syrians who have been displaced.”