Europe loving Trump, but alt-right feels angry, ‘betrayed’ over Syrian airstrikes

Headline in the Independent Friday morning
Headline in the Independent Friday morning

President Donald Trump's targeted missile strikes in Syria were welcomed in “western-friendly” capitals as a "just" and "proportionate" response to the use of chemical weapons, according to media in Europe.

Saudi Arabia’s leaders even called it a “courageous.” But the New York Times was quick to note Trump’s far right supporters turned on him for “breaking his promise” to keep the United States out of another conflict in the Middle East. The Independent in the United Kingdom reported something similar, under the headline: “Donald Trump's biggest fans desert him over Syria airstrikes.”

From Mar-a-Lago, President Donald Trump made a statement on the decision to launch cruise missiles at a Syrian airfield Thursday evening. The launch was in response to a chemical weapons attack it blames on President Bashar al-Assad.

Some accused him of “opening the gates of hell” for ISIS, while others noted this as the moment Trump “betrayed” his supporters.

“I guess Trump wasn't ‘Putin's puppet’ after all, he was just another deep state/Neo-Con puppet,” said Paul Joseph Watson, an editor and writer for the web site INFOWARS.

Syndicated columnists Ann Coulter noted meddling in the Middle East has destroyed every president who’s ever tried it.

“Trump campaigned on not getting involved in Mideast. Said it always helps our enemies and creates more refugees. Then he saw a picture on TV,” said Coulter in a tweet, adding. “Media THRILLED that Trump is destroying his presidency.”

Cassandra Fairbanks, a prominent Trump supporter and online activist, tweeted that she still supports Trump but she was “intensely disappointed.”

“I'm too annoyed, between neo cons pretending they are Trump supporters and liberals gloating, I'm ready to punch someone,” Fairbanks tweeted. “I've lurked pretty much every person that I know (who supported Trump heavily), not a single one is for intervening in Syria.”

USAToday added fuel to the fire by pointing out the airstrike represents an 180-degree change for Trump. “Less than four years ago, Trump was strongly opposed to intervention in Syria over Assad's use of chemical weapons,” it wrote.

The Guardian expressed sarcasm in its coverage: “Donald Trump, the man who just over a month ago wanted to bar entry of all Syrian refugees into the United States, now wants us to think that he cares deeply about Syrian children. I don’t believe it. What I do believe is that our president is a bad actor.”

Celebrities also took to Twitter, with Kerry Washington calling the news “heartbreaking” and Lena Dunham tweeting “a prayer for peace and safety.”

Comedian D.L. Hughley chimed in noting Trump supported “bombing Syria because they were attacked with chemical weapons, but you supported banning Syrian refugees...hypocrite.”