Washington: Hillary Clinton has chided President Donald Trump for ordering massive airstrikes on Syria and said the US cannot in one breath speak of protecting Syrian babies and in the next close America's doors to them.
Clinton, who served as secretary of state under former President Barack Obama, weighed in less than a day after Trump authorised airstrikes against a Syrian regime target in retaliation for a chemical attack on civilians.
She was addressing a luncheon yesterday for Annie's List, which works to elect progressive women in the state of Texas.
She urged the US administration to "recognise that we cannot in one breath speak of protecting Syrian babies and in the next close America's doors to them."
During her tenure at the State Department and her presidential campaign, Clinton, 69, advocated for more aggressive action to deter Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and said the US should implement a no-fly zone, the CBS News reported.
She reiterated that position in an event in New York on Thursday just hours before the airstrikes began.
"As I said yesterday afternoon it is essential that the world does more to deter Assad from committing future murderous atrocities," Clinton said.
"But the action taken last night needs to be followed by a broader strategy to end Syria's civil war and to eliminate ISIS strongholds on both sides of the border so I hope this administration will move forward in a way that is both strategic and consistent with our values," she said.
On Trump's orders, US warships in the Mediterranean Sea launched between 50-60 Tomahawk cruise missiles at the Shayrat air base in Homs governorate, where the warplanes that carried out the chemical attacks are based.
Clinton did not mention Trump by name when discussing Syria, but concluded that the action in Syria the night before "serve as a reminder that "politics matter enormously."
"The leaders we choose matter. The role the US plays in the world matters," Clinton said.
During her speech she lauded gains made by both women candidates and the Democratic Party in Texas during the 2016 election.
Her own 9-point loss to Trump in Texas, she said, was the closest presidential election in the state in two decades.