Trump gives in to calls to slow down Syria troop pullout

Trump gives in to calls to slow down Syria troop pullout

Saying that the Taliban and Islamic State terrorists are "fighting each other" in parts of Afghanistan, he said he told the generals, "Why don't you let them fight?"

"We want to protect the Kurds, but I don't want to be in Syria forever", Trump said, adding that the country is "sand and it's death".

Trump had come under fire for his projected quick withdrawal from various quarters, including retired Gen. Stanley McChrystal, who commanded American-led troops in Afghanistan from 2009 to 2010, and warned, "If you pull American influence out, you're likely to have greater instability and of course it'll be much more hard for the United States to try to push events in any direction". It prompted Defense Secretary Jim Mattis to step down, and the USA envoy to the coalition fighting Islamic State militants resigned in protest.

Over the last several years, Israel has carried out hundreds of airstrikes in Syria against targets linked to Iran. They can do what they want there, frankly, but they're pulling people out. "Iran wants to survive now".

"If you're exhausted of fighting radical Islam, I understand it - they're not exhausted of fighting you", Graham said in a comment to reporters which was included in the video.

"Oh, we're withdrawing", he said, adding that it would happen "over a period of time". "I'd love to negotiate with Iran... but Iran is a much different country right now".

According to a new report, President Trump is giving the US military four months to execute the withdrawal of the 2,000 United States troops in Syria roughly two weeks ago, when he reportedly told the Defense Department they had 30 days to pull out. He noted that any other United States president would have been applauded for such a decision.

"The decision by the president on Syria in no way changes anything that this administration is working on alongside Israel", Pompeo said at a joint press conference with Netanyahu before they held talks in Brazil.

On Tuesday, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told Netanyahu that the planned withdrawal of US ground forces from Syria will not alter America's commitment to countering Iranian aggression and maintaining Israel's security.

The tweeted comment came the day after a senior Republican senator said Trump had promised to stay in Syria to finish the job of destroying the Islamic State group - days after he shocked allies, and his own military establishment, by saying troops were coming home.

"Well, I don't see it. I'm not happy about it at all" said Trump. "So that's the way it is".

Trump's abrupt pullout - which was criticized by a raft of current and former officials from both parties - fueled speculation that Kurdish fighters in Syria would be left at the mercy of the Turkish military, with whom some of them have been fighting a low-intensity conflict for decades.

"You can't make a threat and then do nothing. So Syria was lost long ago", Trump said. "We're not talking about vast wealth".

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