Opinion: Trump's Syria speech was a pageant of absurdities - - PressFrom - US

Opinion Trump's Syria speech was a pageant of absurdities

20:10  23 october  2019
20:10  23 october  2019 Source:   washingtonexaminer.com

Trump halting trade negotiations with Turkey, raising its steel tariffs to 50%

  Trump halting trade negotiations with Turkey, raising its steel tariffs to 50% President Donald Trump announced Monday that he would "soon" issue an order sanctioning Turkish officials, hiking tariffs on Turkish steel up to 50% and "immediately" halting trade negotiations with the country. © Thomson Reuters Turkey-backed Syrian rebel fighters hold the Syrian opposition flag at the border town of Tel Abyad, Syria, October 14, 2019.

President Trump announced late Friday that the United States had conducted a military attack against the Syrian regime. Full transcript of Trump ’ s address on Syria airstrikes. Add to list. On my list.

But Mr Trump also said the US had been asked by Israel and Jordan to leave a small number of troops in "a totally different section of Syria ". The US House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly to condemn the move, with both Democrats and Mr Trump ' s fellow Republicans backing the resolution.

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a man in a military uniform© Provided by MediaDC: Washington Newspaper Publishing Company, Inc.

Speaking below a painting of President George Washington on Wednesday, one might have hoped President Trump would find some courage from the great commander in chief. Washington, after all, won a nation by storming across icy rivers and overcoming the world's most powerful empire.

Alas, Trump did not find courage. Instead, the president offered a rambling pageant of absurdities.

Trump: Let 'Napoleon Bonaparte' rescue Kurds

  Trump: Let 'Napoleon Bonaparte' rescue Kurds Donald Trump suggested Monday that Syria's formerly US-allied Kurds could look to 19th century French emperor Napoleon Bonaparte for protection after the US president ordered the departure of nearly 1,000 US troops from the country. "Anyone who wants to assist Syria in protecting the Kurds is good with me, whether it is Russia, China, or Napoleon Bonaparte. I hope they all do great, we are 7,000 miles away!" Trump wrote on Twitter.He defended his weekend order to vacate northeastern Syria and abandon the Kurds, saying that the US mission to defeat Islamic State in the region had been achieved "100 percent.

WASHINGTON — President Trump has ordered the withdrawal of 2,000 American troops from Syria , bringing a sudden end to a military campaign that largely vanquished the Islamic State but ceding a strategically vital country to Russia and Iran.

President Trump says the strikes are intended to deter the use of chemical weapons, which the Syrian government is accused of using on civilians in Douma, a suburb of Damascus. USA TODAY.

Trump claimed the ceasefire in northern Syria is holding and "will indeed be permanent." But the degree of permanence, he immediately added, is "somewhat questionable." The ceasefire, Trump said, was "created by us" and will achieve "a much more peaceful and stable area."

This is not true. Russian President Vladimir Putin has used Trump's submission to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to impose his own Russia-dictated resolution on the Kurds.

Trump claimed the United States has "saved the lives of many, many Kurds." Wrong, the Kurds have chosen to retreat because in America's betrayal, it was either retreat or die at the hands of Turkish and Russian bombs.

Trump said it was this ceasefire or a war with Turkey that "would have required deploying tens of thousands of American troops." Again, obviously false: Fewer than 100 American soldiers were deterring a Turkish incursion. Turkey only launched its offensive when Trump pulled those forces out.

Erdogan says Turkey will never declare ceasefire in northern Syria -NTV

  Erdogan says Turkey will never declare ceasefire in northern Syria -NTV President Tayyip Erdogan told U.S. President Donald Trump that Turkey will never declare a ceasefire in northeastern Syria, and added that he was not worried about U.S. sanctions over Ankara's offensive, broadcaster NTV reported on Tuesday. © ASSOCIATED PRESS In this photo taken from the Turkish side of the border between Turkey and Syria, in Ceylanpinar, Sanliurfa province, southeastern Turkey, smoke and dust billows from targets in Ras al-Ayn, Syria, caused by bombardment by Turkish forces, Tuesday, Oct. 15, 2019.

Trump ' s week of confusion over Syria . The Little Miss Pumpkin Show pageant parade was the afternoon's highlight, as beaming seven-year-old girls in fancy dress sat on the hoods of slow-driving American sports cars, interspersed with local school marching bands, in a seemingly endless

President Trump addressed the nation on Friday night about his decision to order strikes on Syria , following a suspected chemical attack. The following is the complete text of his remarks, as prepared by The New York Times. Read here for the latest on the strikes ». _

The speech got worse.

Resorting to tropes, Trump described the Syrian conflict as a "sectarian" and "tribal" struggle over "bloodstained sand." This simplistic description ignores the alliance of the Kurds in northern Syria and Sunni-Arabs in eastern Syria in fighting alongside America against ISIS. On that ISIS factor, Trump said he expects "Turkey to abide by its commitment with regards to ISIS." Regional states, Trump added, would have to "ensure that ISIS does not regain any territory ... it's their neighborhood."

Trump's ignorance will be proven when ISIS uses the debilitation of the Kurds to restore its black flag. Trump said he is saving American lives, but how many Americans will have to die to defeat ISIS again? We've seen this movie before.

Attacking President Barack Obama's failure to enforce his red lines against Syrian dictator Bashar Assad's use of chemical weapons of mass destruction, Trump arrogantly claimed, "I did honor my commitments" to prevent the same chemical attacks. Another lie. Trump enforced his red lines in 2017 and 2018 but has failed to do so in response to new attacks this year.

There was one ray of light in this speech. Trump has made the right decision in retaining some forces in eastern Syria in order to protect oil fields from falling into Russian and Iranian hands. But even here, alongside his abandonment of the Kurds, Trump's proud pledge that "we're going to be protecting" the oil plays to the worse American stereotype: as a country that acts only in defense of greed.

As I say, this wasn't exactly American leadership at its best.

Pentagon chief looks to focus on Turkey, Syria at NATO but has few good options .
Pentagon chief looks to focus on Turkey, Syria at NATO but has few good optionsEarlier this month, U.S. President Donald Trump announced that the United States would be withdrawing it's troops from northeastern Syria, clearing the way for Turkish troops to launch an offensive against Kurdish fighters in the area.

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