Small Wars Journal

Trump Vows Quick Exit From Syria

Trump Vows Quick Exit From Syria by Felicia Schwartz, Michael R. Gordon and Dion Nissenbaum – Wall Street Journal

President Donald Trump said Tuesday he wanted the U.S. military to “bring our troops back home” from Syria, taking a position at odds with many top advisers who worry that leaving the country too soon would cede ground to Iran, Russia, their proxies and other extremist groups.

Members of Mr. Trump’s national security team hoped to persuade him at a White House meeting being held later in the day to keep troops in Syria for now and maintain funding for recovery work there, according to U.S. officials familiar with the discussions.

Mr. Trump said he soon would decide on a course of action, but was inclined to leave, saying the task of defeating the extremist group Islamic State was nearly completed.

“I want to get out. I want to bring our troops back home. I want to start rebuilding our nation,” Mr. Trump said at a news conference at the White House.

There currently are about 2,000 American troops in Syria, advising and aiding local forces that have been fighting Islamic State. A small number of diplomats are also in Syria undertaking basic recovery work in war-hit areas…

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