At a press briefing Wednesday afternoon Secretary of Defense Ashe Carter took questions from the media on the Russian airstrike in Syria. Carter said the nation's actions "reflect what they said they would do."
"Are you confident that the Russians are acting in good faith or do you think that perhaps they might be messing with you?" a BBC reporter asked the secretary.
"I take the Russians at their word," Carter responded. "They're exceptionally clear about what they're saying and their actions now seem to reflect what they said they were going to do. So my problem isn't that I don't understand what they're doing. I think my problem is that I think what they are doing will backfire and is counterproductive."
"If you're asking if I am surprised at that, I'm not," Carter later said when he was asked to clarify the remarks.