Small Wars Journal

Another Former CENTCOM General Weighs In With Displeasure Over Trump’s Syria Gambit

Another Former CENTCOM General Weighs In With Displeasure Over Trump’s Syria Gambit by Howard Altman – Military Times

One after another, the commanders who oversaw this nation’s battles in the Middle East have expressed their distaste for the way that President Donald Trump has handled the long-threatened Turkish invasion of Syria.

Some, like Joseph Votel, the former leader of U.S. Central Command, have been publicly vocal about what he sees as a betrayal of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces, a key partner in ending the Islamic State caliphate in Syria.

Votel, who co-authored a much more detailed piece in the Atlantic, told me he was “disappointed in this policy decision" and that there “was a lot of work undertaken to avoid a decision like this. The SDF have been exceptional partners and we would have not been successful against ISIS in Syria without them. They absorbed nearly 11,000 casualties in that fight. I am concerned what this might mean for future partnerships.”

Others have expressed to me in private similar concerns, ranging from our nation’s credibility to Turkish brutality.

Earlier this week, another former CENTCOM general officer sat down with me to talk about his concerns. Those concerns are deep and they are troubling and they come from a man who, like all the others I have spoken with, is not a social justice warrior or “Never Trumper” type…

Read on.