U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Woody Paschall
Sailors aboard the guided-missile destroyer USS Preble conduct an operational tomahawk missile launch while underway in a training area off the coast of California.
With an estimated cost of $1.4 million each, Raytheon’s Tomahawk missile has an intermediate range of 800 to 1,553 miles and can be deployed from more than 140 U.S. Navy ships and submarines. In 1995, the United Kingdom became the second military to add the Tomahawk to its arsenal.
What makes the Tomahawk exceptionally lethal is its capability to carry a 1,000-pound conventional warhead and be reprogrammed mid-flight.
Trump threatens strikes
For the last five days, Trump has sharpened his rhetoric against Syria and its most powerful ally Russia and issued a threat via Twitter of a potential U.S. strike againstthe war-torn country.
“Get ready Russia, because they will be coming, nice and new and “smart! You shouldn’t be partners with a Gas Killing Animal who kills his people and enjoys it,” Trump said.
The tweet came on the heels of an alleged chemical weapons attack believed to be carried out by forces aligned with the Assad regime in Douma, a town that was held by Syrian rebels.
The World Health Organization said Wednesday that approximately 500 people in Douma were treated for “signs and symptoms consistent with exposure to toxic chemicals.”
Last year, the Trump administration lobbed a total of 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles from Navy destroyers USS Porter and USS Ross in the eastern Mediterranean.
The missiles hit aircraft hangars, ammunition bunkers, air defense systems and radars. Additionally, the Pentagon said Russian forces in Syria were formally notified before the strike, but Moscow was not involved in the military operation.