Trump continues to amuse and confuse with his position on Syria. Earlier this week he indicated that he would be withdrawing United States troops from Syria but then today he issued a statement saying the fight against ISIS is not complete and United States troops will be in the Middle East… Well, it seems like forever.
Read the statement — it’s incredibly open-ended with regard to military action:
NEW: White House releases statement on U.S. presence in Syria, one day after Pres. Trump indicated he wanted to withdraw U.S. troops.
— ABC News (@ABC) April 4, 2018
The most concerning part of the statement is the mention of United Nations engagement in the Middle East. This isn’t a de-escalation — it’s an unprecedented call for action. Since the Sykes-Picot agreement in 1906, the Middle East has been fractured intentionally to create conflict and make it easy for colonial powers to extract resources.
Now Trump wants to divvy up things again, and this time under the guise of defeating ISIS
While ISIS does need to be completely eradicated, they are mostly contained inside pockets of Syria and are slowly being eradicated by airpower, and of course friendly Russian mercenaries.
So this might be seen as Trump trying to flex his muscles in the Middle East because Russia has had a successful intervention in a middle eastern country while the United States has not been able to establish any permanent types of success in the Middle East.
The largest issue by far is Trump’s flip-flopping on his declarations about Syria. When Obama declared a red line over the use of chemical weapons by Bashar al-Assad, he swiftly turned to Congress and the American people for authorization to go to war in Syria. Although that authorization never came — since Americans are largely opposed to any further conflict in the Middle East — Assad finally declared a huge cache of chemical weapons he has never before admitted were in his possession, and agreed to give them up.
Now that Assad has reasserted himself as the Syrian dictator he’s always been, if Trump cannot be consistent in his policy this humanitarian crisis will only get worse and of course, the United States will inherit another quagmire.
Hopefully someone with some sense gets him his dementia meds soon and he can decide what he really feels like doing with our precious blood and treasure.