President Donald Trump tweeted Sunday that he is "bringing soldiers home" from Syria as Turkey continues its deadly military operation there, but Pentagon chief Mark Esper undermined the president's declaration by confirming that U.S. forces are simply moving to another site of endless war—Iraq.
American troops "aren't coming home and the United States isn't leaving the turbulent Middle East, according to current plans outlined by U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper before he arrived in Afghanistan on Sunday," the Associated Press reported.
Esper told reporters that he has spoken to Iraqi leaders about the administration's plan to move around 1,000 American troops from Syria to Iraq, where 5,000 U.S. soldiers remain stationed 16 years after the George W. Bush administration's catastrophic and illegal invasion.
But NOW the defense secretary announced US forces leaving Syria to go to western IRAQ, which for years has been a FAR MORE DANGEROUS warzone.
News that the Trump administration is shifting American forces from Syria to Iraq rather than returning them to the U.S. comes just two weeks after the Pentagon ordered 1,800 troops to Saudi Arabia, a move critics said put the lie to the president's claim that he is attempting to end perpetual wars.
TRUMP IS NOT BRINGING TROOPS HOME.
— CODEPINK (@codepink) October 21, 2019
President Trump says, constantly, he’s pulling US troops out of “endless wars” in the Middle East. But NOW the defense secretary announced US forces leaving Syria to go to western IRAQ, which for years has been a FAR MORE DANGEROUS warzone.
— Richard Engel (@RichardEngel) October 20, 2019