Trump’s indecisive syria policy

Trump's indecisive syria policy

Is image allegedly from baghuz

According to a wsj report, more u.S. Soldiers are to remain in syria after all, but the pentagon was quick to deny this, pointing to "productive" discussions with turkey

The white house cannot speak of consistent planning and decision-making and of a corresponding military and military policy. An example of this is the syria policy. It will be remembered that in mid-december, as a kind of christmas surprise, u.S. President donald trump announced the complete withdrawal from syria, allegedly because the islamic state was now defeated. In doing so, trump had contradicted the pentagon and, in particular, then-defense secretary mattis, which led to the recalcitrant mattis resigning or, as the case may be, being forced to resign. Was fired. At the same time, trump had largely cleansed the white house of people who still hold the remnants of their own opinions against him.

It took until february for the news to make the rounds that while u.S. Troops were already being prepared to leave, of the 2,000 u.S. Troops supposedly stationed there, 200 or 300 were still to remain in the country; later there was talk of 400. They were intended to protect the syrian kurds of the sdf, who were startled by the withdrawal plans and were feverishly negotiating with damascus and moscow, from an attack by the turkish military, but also to prevent iran and the shiite militias from expanding further.

Turkey’s president erdogan has made it clear time and again not only that the kurds must disappear from manbij (manbij) and the area west of the euphrates river, but also that, as in afrin, turkey would prefer to see all of the territory held by the kurds of the ypg.

This desire to further divide syria, to determine its political fate even more strongly, or even to annex syrian territories went too far for moscow, too. Russia sent troops toward manbij, where u.S. Patrols continued to be spotted, promised to cower there after americans left. At least ankara wants a security zone there, which in turn was controlled by the turks and their militias.

Under erdogan, the nato state of turkey has been in conflict with the u.S. For some time over the kurdish ie, which uses the sdf as its ground forces, but at the same time uses them geostrategically to hold a good part of syria as a sphere of influence against the interests of turkey, russia, iran, and the syrian government. Erdogan is also at cross purposes with the u.S. Over the continued intended purchase of russia’s s-400 missile defense system, but moscow is also wary of turkey because of the lack of progress in idlib, where the former al-qaeda offshoot hts has largely taken over, after the tolerated capture of afrin.

Another u-turn in syria?

According to the wall street journal, there is another about-face in the white house. Now reportedly 1000 soldiers to remain in syria. The original plan was to resume airstrikes from iraq if is spreads further into syria, but iraq is resisting this. In january, an is suicide bomber in manbij had killed four u.S. Soldiers, more is fighters are reportedly infiltrating idlib, and an unknown number of is fighters are said to remain in baghuz, even though thousands have already fled and surrendered.

The pentagon quickly contradicted the wsj report and agreed with trump’s position. General joseph dunford, chairman of the joint chiefs of staff and top military officer, responded to the wsj article by saying that they were following the president’s instructions to withdraw all but a small number of troops. Moreover, they are in allegedly "productive" negotiations with turkey to address security concerns on the turkish-syrian border. For this purpose one has "initial concept".

It does not sound improbable, if the pentagon wants to leave more soldiers in syria. In view of the reconstruction, the military and political presence would be strengthened, as they still do not want to cooperate with the assad government. The donor conference has just made that clear (but the fact that assad is not getting the money!)

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