Tags: Syria | lindsey graham | syria | turkey | kurds

Sen. Graham: Trump Sounds Like Obama on Syria Pullout

By    |   Monday, 07 October 2019 09:56 AM

President Donald Trump's rationale for pulling U.S. forces from Syria sounds like former President Barack Obama's reasons for leaving Iraq, Sen. Lindsey Graham said Monday.

He also called the Trump administration's contention that ISIS has been defeated its "biggest lie."

"If I didn't see Donald Trump's name on the tweet I thought it would be Obama's rationale for getting out of Iraq," the South Carolina Republican told Fox News' "Fox and Friends" during a telephone interview, after the president posted a series of messages on Twitter about the pullout. "This is going to lead to ISIS' reemergence. (There is) nothing better for ISIS than to create a conflict between the Kurds and Turkey."

Early Monday, U.S. Troops started pulling back from positions in northeastern Syria, leaving before troops from Turkey were to make an incursion into the area, according to U.S.-backed Kurdish forces. 

Syria's Kurdish fighters said the decision from Washington to stand aside, coming late Sunday will overturn their years of achievement fighting ISIS, and Graham Monday predicted the Kurds will end up aligning with Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad "because they have nobody to count on because we abandoned them."

ISIS' caliphate is destroyed, said Graham, but thousands of its fighters remain. He said he applauds Trump for getting the Kurds and Saudi Arabia to do the fighting, but slammed his "impulsive decision" for undoing the gains made in the region.

"Iran is licking its chops," said Graham. "If I'm an ISIS fighter, I have got a second lease on life. To those who think ISIS has been defeated you will soon see. To Turkey, you have destroyed the relationship what little you had with the U.S. Congress. I will do everything I can to sanction Turkey's military and their economy if they step one foot into (northeastern) Syria."

"That will sever my relationship with Turkey," said Graham. "I think most of Congress feels that way. I will do a resolution urging the president to reconsider this position."

He added that he thinks Trump is right about Europe needing to do more about ISIS, but at the same time, he pointed out that Trump is the president and that requires that he act as a leader.

If the United States abandons the Kurds, "good luck getting anybody to help America in the future with radical Islam, Al Qaeda, and ISIS," Graham warned. "If you believe that Iran is a threat to the region, they're the biggest winner of this. You may be tired of fighting radical Islam but they're not tired of fighting you."

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President Donald Trump's rationale for pulling U.S. forces from Syria sounds like former President Barack Obama's reasons for leaving Iraq, Sen. Lindsey Graham said Monday.
lindsey graham, syria, turkey, kurds
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2019-56-07
Monday, 07 October 2019 09:56 AM
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