“We have defeated ISIS in Syria, my only reason for being there,” wrote President Donald Trump, as he ordered the withdrawal of all U.S. forces from Syria, stunning the U.S. foreign policy establishment.
Trump overruled his secretaries of state and defense, and jolted this city and capitals across NATO Europe and the Middle East.
Yet, Trump is doing exactly what he promised to do in his campaign. And what his decision seems to say is this:
We are extricating America from the forever war of the Middle East so foolishly begun by previous presidents. We are coming home. The rulers and peoples of this region are going to have to find their own way and fight their own wars. We are not so powerful that we can fight their wars while we also confront Iran and North Korea and face new Cold Wars with Russia and China.
Nixonu2019s White Hous…
Best Price: $10.27
Buy New $10.02
(as of 02:25 EST – Details)
As for the terrorists of ISIS, says Trump, they are defeated.
Yet, despite the heavy casualties and lost battles ISIS has suffered, the collapse of the caliphate, expulsion from its Syrian capital Raqqa and Iraqi capital Mosul, and from almost all territories it controlled in both countries, ISIS is not dead. It lives on in thousands of true believers hidden in those countries. And, like al-Qaida, it has followers across the Middle East and inspires haters of the West living in the West.
The U.S. pullout from Syria is being called a victory for Vladimir Putin. “Russia, Iran, Assad… are ecstatic!” wails Sen. Lindsey Graham.
Graham is echoed by Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse who called the withdrawal a “retreat” and charged that Trump’s generals “believe the high-fiving winners…