Trump says U.S. troops are ‘slowly’ being sent home from Syria
President Donald Trump on Monday continued to defend plans to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria but asserted they are being sent home “slowly,” adding to the uncertainty about the timetable of an action that has drawn widespread criticism.
Earlier this month, the White House announced that the United States would move quickly to withdraw roughly 2,000 troops from Syria, a decision that defied the warnings of Trump’s top advisers. At the time, Trump justified the move by saying the United States had defeated the Islamic State militant group in the region.
In his tweets Monday, Trump asserted that the group also known as ISIS was “mostly gone” and wrote that “we’re slowly sending our troops back home to be with their families, while at the same time fighting ISIS remnants.”
“If anybody but Donald Trump did what I did in Syria, which was an ISIS loaded mess when I became President, they would be a national hero,” Trump said, also dismissing some of his critics as “some failed Generals who were unable to do the job before I arrived.”
He added that he was making good on a campaign promise to address “NEVER ENDING WARS.”
His full tweets on Syria:
“If anybody but Donald Trump did what I did in Syria, which was an ISIS loaded mess when I became President, they would be a national hero. ISIS is mostly gone, we’re slowly sending our troops back home to be with their families, while at the same time fighting ISIS remnants……
“…I campaigned on getting out of Syria and other places. Now when I start getting out the Fake News Media, or some failed Generals who were unable to do the job before I arrived, like to complain about me & my tactics, which are working. Just doing what I said I was going to do!
“…..Except the results are FAR BETTER than I ever said they were going to be! I campaigned against the NEVER ENDING WARS, remember!”
The tweets came a day after Trump had lunch with Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., an ally on most issues but a staunch critic of the president’s plans to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria.
Afterward, Graham described Trump’s decision as “a pause situation” rather than a withdrawal of troops, telling reporters, “I think the president’s taking this really seriously.”
“He told me some things I didn’t know that made me feel a lot better about where we’re headed in Syria,” Graham added.
Graham was among several Republican lawmakers who harshly criticized the White House’s original announcement, saying leaving Syria would be a “stain on the honor of the United States” and a “disaster on multiple fronts.”