Politics: House condemns Trump’s Syria withdrawal - - PressFrom - US

Politics House condemns Trump’s Syria withdrawal

22:15  16 october  2019
22:15  16 october  2019 Source:   politico.com

McConnell warns Trump most of Senate opposes Syria troop withdrawal

  McConnell warns Trump most of Senate opposes Syria troop withdrawal Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell became the highest ranking Republican to criticize President Trump’s decision to remove U.S. forces from a multinational coalition fighting terrorism in Syria. © Provided by MediaDC: Washington Newspaper Publishing Company, Inc.McConnell, of Kentucky, went one step further than simply expressing opposition to the move. He reminded Trump that a supermajority of lawmakers — more than two-thirds of the full Senate, voted in January to express support for “continued military presence in northeastern Syria.” And he compared the move to the Obama administration’s inaction in Syria.

In a stinging bipartisan rebuke, the House on Wednesday condemned President Donald Trump's withdrawal of U.S. troops from northern Syria.

Donald Trump wearing a suit and tie: President Donald Trump.© Evan Vucci/AP Photo President Donald Trump.

Voting 354 to 60, lawmakers approved a non-binding resolution opposing the move, which set the stage for Turkey's military assault against Kurdish forces in Syria that the U.S. partnered with to beat back Islamic State terrorists.

The withdrawal last week drew scorn from both parties, who contend the U.S. is abandoning its Kurdish allies, undermining the fight against ISIS and spurring a humanitarian catastrophe.

"What kind of message does this send to the world? How can America be trusted to keep its word when we betray one of our close partners?" House Foreign Affairs Chairman Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.) asked on the House floor. "Congress must speak out against this disgrace."

Trump defends Syria move: The Kurds 'didn't help us' in Normandy

  Trump defends Syria move: The Kurds 'didn't help us' in Normandy President Trump on Wednesday criticized the Kurds, saying they didn't help the United States during World War II and that they were only fighting for their land in Syria during the battle against ISIS."The Kurds are fighting for their land," Trump told reporters at the White House during an event in the Roosevelt Room."And as somebody wrote in a very, very powerful article today, they didn't help us in the second World War, they didn't"The Kurds are fighting for their land," Trump told reporters at the White House during an event in the Roosevelt Room.

The top Republican on the Foreign Affairs Committee, Rep. Michael McCaul of Texas, said he understood Trump's "legitimate concerns" about committing troops overseas, but said the president's Syria pullout had damaged U.S. interests in the region.

"I, too, want to wind down our overseas conflicts and bring our troops home," McCaul said. "But leaving [northeast] Syria now does not resolve the problem that brought us there in the first place. It only creates more."

"We need a residual force in place," he added. "The consequences of this decision have already unfolded before our very eyes."

The resolution is non-binding and doesn't condemn Trump by name. It calls on Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to halt Turkey's military campaign in Syria and urges humanitarian support to displaced Syrian Kurds and calls on the U.S. to ensure Turkey "acts with restraint and respects existing agreements related to Syria."

Mattis: ISIS will surge back after Trump's Syria withdrawal

  Mattis: ISIS will surge back after Trump's Syria withdrawal Mattis: ISIS will surge back after Trump's Syria withdrawal"I think Secretary of State Pompeo, the intelligence services, the foreign countries that are working with us have it about right that ISIS is not defeated. We have got to keep the pressure on ISIS so they don't recover," Mattis said in an interview on NBC News' "Meet the Press" set to air Sunday.

The resolution also urges the Trump administration to outline "a clear and specific plan for the enduring defeat of ISIS."

Amid bipartisan pressure, the president announced sanctions against Turkey on Monday and is slated to meet with congressional leaders later Wednesday. Trump has also dispatched Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to meet with Erdoğan to help broker a ceasefire.

Still, Trump staunchly defended his decision to withdraw troops and slammed the Kurds as "not angels" in remarks Wednesday in the Oval Office.

"The Kurds know how to fight, and as I said, they're not angels,” Trump told reporters.

Both the House and Senate are also weighing sanctions of their own against Turkey amid chaos in the region.

Engel and McCaul are offering legislation that would sanction senior Turkish officials involved in the invasion, bar weapons transfers to Turkish forces in Syria and require Trump to impose sanctions on Turkey for its acquisition of a Russian missile system.

Pelosi says Trump had 'meltdown' over House vote on Syria

  Pelosi says Trump had 'meltdown' over House vote on Syria House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said U.S. Democratic leaders' White House meeting was cut short after Republican President Donald Trump had a "meltdown" over a House of Representatives vote condemning his Syria withdrawal. © Reuters U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) walks out with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) to speak with reporters after meeting with President Donald Trump at the White House in Washington, U.S., October 16, 2019.

Additionally, House Republicans, led by Conference Chair Liz Cheney of Wyoming, have introduced legislation that would bar U.S. arms sales to Turkey as well as impose sanctions against Erdoğan and other key Turkish leaders.

Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) and Trump ally Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) also plan to roll out a sanctions package on Thursday.

Syrian Kurdish militias have now aligned with the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to fend off the Turkish invasion.

The military offensive is also the latest in an increasingly fraught U.S. partnership with Turkey, which is a NATO ally.

The U.S. removed Turkey from its F-35 fighter program after Ankara accepted delivery of the Russian-made S-400 missile system after both lawmakers and administration officials had warned against the acquisition.

More than 100 ISIS prisoners in Syria are on the loose following Turkey’s invasion, US envoy says .
More than 100 Islamic State militants who were being held in Kurdish prisons in Syria are now on the loose following Turkey’s invasion there, President Trump’s Special Representative for Syria Engagement revealed Wednesday. require(["medianetNativeAdOnArticle"], function (medianetNativeAdOnArticle) { medianetNativeAdOnArticle.getMedianetNativeAds(true); }); James Jeffrey’s disturbing admission comes as Russian forces moved into Syria Wednesday to conduct joint patrols with Turkish troops along its border.

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