President Donald Trump and his team have made the drastic announcement that they intend to pull out troops from Syria within the next month.
On Wednesday, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders spoke to the media to confirm a plan to remove troops in the east.
She stated: “Five years ago, ISIS was a very powerful and dangerous force in the Middle East, and now the United States has defeated the territorial caliphate."
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Sanders' words were reflected in a tweet on Wednesday morning from the POTUS himself.
"We have defeated ISIS in Syria, my only reason for being there during the Trump Presidency."
According to the NY Times, the move to pull the troops received negative feedback from a number of high-ranking officials. But Sanders implied that the process had already begun.
"These victories over ISIS in Syria do not signal the end of the Global Coalition or its campaign. We have started returning United States troops home as we transition to the next phase of this campaign."
Officials at the Pentagon reportedly urged the President to withdraw the decision. They claimed it would put Kurdish allies at risk of being attacked by the new Turkey threat.
Pentagon spokesman Colonel Rob Manning gave a brief statement:
”At this time, we continue to work by, with and through our partners in the region.”
Meanwhile, Senator Lindsey Graham is calling the move an "Obama-like mistake." Those words may hit a nerve for the president who is a strong critic of his predecessor.
Graham said in a statement :
"If these media reports are true, it will be an Obama-like mistake made by the Trump Administration. While American patience in confronting radical Islam may wane, the radical Islamists’ passion to kill Americans and our allies never wavers."
"I fear it will lead to devastating consequences for our nation, the region, and throughout the world. Staying there is an insurance policy against the reemergence of ISIS and destruction of our Kurdish allies who fought so bravely against them."
The estimated number of troops that may come home is 2,000 out of northern Syria. The US military has had a presence in the nation since 2014.
They initially provided rebels with non-lethal aid, then moved on to actual training to produce fighters that would defeat ISIS.
While Trump has attempted to undermine all that was done during the Obama administration, he has had to continue the war so as to prevent the atrocities of ISIS from spreading.
The presence of troops in the east started during Obama's term, but a recent mobilization of troops at the Mexican-US border is Trump's doing.
Obama recently criticized Trump for sending thousands of military troops to man the border and prevent illegal immigrants from coming in.
Obama called the use of military personnel a "political stunt" to impress Republican votes. The election was approaching around the time Trump mobilized the men.
At this point, it appears that only Trump's administration sees a need to pull out the soldiers from Syria. It remains to be seen if he will follow through considering the barrage of opposition.