Published: Thu, January 03, 2019
Global Media | By Garry Long

Trump will bring troops home from Syria 'slowly'

Trump will bring troops home from Syria 'slowly'

Trump's decision to pull America's 2,000 troops out from Syria caused a major shakeup within his own administration; his secretary of defense, James Mattis, resigned over the withdrawal.

Trump fought back against the criticism. "To be able to leave Syria and make sure ISIS never comes back". It is Fake News and Pundits who have FAILED for years that are doing the complaining.

"I want to fight the war in the enemy's backyard, not ours", Graham said in an interview on CNN's Sunday morning State of the Union show.

The US-led coalition launched its first raids against Islamic State in September, 2014, more than two years before Trump won the US election.

Critics also contend that the US withdrawal would embolden Iran and Russian Federation, which have supported the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad.

The shift came a day after a senior Republican senator said Trump had promised to stay in Syria to finish the job of defeating the Islamic State group, also known as ISIS.

The president has long campaigned for the removal of USA troops from the Middle East, arguing that there was no benefit for the country to be involved in the many conflicts there.

Trump announced his plan to withdraw all of the roughly 2,000 troops from war-torn Syria earlier this month.

Graham says Trump is receptive to making a deal if it achieves his goal of securing the border. "The pause is to assess the effects of the conditions on the ground".

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"We talked about Syria and he told me some things I didn't know that make me feel a lot better about where we're headed in Syria", the SC lawmaker said of his meeting with Trump.

"We need to keep our troops there", Graham said. "Slow it down. Make sure we get it right".

On Monday, the Republican president said the United States was "slowly sending" troops home - a markedly different tone than he used in his initial announcement of a withdrawal on December 19.

Nevertheless, Trump's latest plan left open the question of whether an orderly pullout from Syria would happen. Now he said the militant group is "mostly done", although the network, with its hard-line extremist ideology, continues to inspire sympathizers and has affiliated groups in other parts of the world. "I never said fast or slow", he said.

On Friday, Gen. Joseph F. Dunford Jr., chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, met at the White House with Trump's national security adviser, John Bolton, to get more clarity on the timing and other details of the withdrawal.

"Somebody said four months, but I didn't say that, either", he said.

Another prominent critic of the pullout was retired U.S. army general Stanley McChrystal, the former commander of USA and global forces in Afghanistan, who on Sunday warned on ABC's "This Week" that a United States pullout would likely cause "greater instability" in the region.

He denied there was a set timeline for the withdrawal, saying it would be "over a period of time".

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