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Andy Harris applauds Trump's decision to strike Syria

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Posted at 11:52 PM, Apr 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-07 06:50:10-04

Representative Andy Harris said he thinks the president did the right thing in launching missiles against Syrian air force base. 

"I think that he's re-establishing American leadership in the area, and honestly it shouldn't have taken two chemical weapons strikes before something was done to Syria to send a message that's unacceptable in the international world environment," he said. 

RELATED: US attacks Syrian military with missiles

Harris said retaliations like Thursday's strike need to come quickly. 

"I think a decisive message has to be sent to Mr. Assad that it's just not going to be tolerated to use chemical weapons against all kinds of international treaties and agreements," Harris said. 

Reports have indicated that U.S. officials informed Russian officials before the strike. Harris said he thinks that was a good move. 

"The purpose of the mission was not to destroy Russian aircraft, it was actually not to kill anyone; it was to make sure that the sarin gas attacks couldn't be launched in that air field again."

See also: Ruppersberger: 'Chemical and biological weapons can't be tolerated anywhere'

Trump was an opponent of attacking the Syrian government before taking office. In 2013, he tweeted that "bad things will happen" if then President Barack Obama would attack Assad's government.

But Trump said that the images from this year's chemical weapon attack affected him. 

RELATED: Senator Ben Cardin reacts to air strike on Syria