President Donald Trump gives military 4 months to leave Syria

Trump Goes Wobbly on Threats

Trump 'slowing down' planned withdrawal from Syria, senator says

President Donald Trump has ordered a slowdown to the withdrawal of USA forces in Syria, Republican Sen.

"I think we're slowing things down in a smart way", he told reporters. "That's what we're talking about", Trump said during a cabinet meeting. "But the goal has always been the same".

"We're in countries that most people have never even heard about", he said, referring to USA combat deployments, including in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria. Earlier in the day, he said the removal of US troops could leave Syrian Kurds at risk from both ISIS and Turkey.

For a president who has looked to the military for affirmation throughout his campaign and presidency and boasted about stocking his Cabinet with what he called "my generals", his decision December 19 to withdraw quickly from Syria was a significant split from his military and civilian advisers.

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Later in the afternoon, Graham emerged from the White House meeting and said that Trump had promised to stay in Syria to finish the job of destroying IS - just days after announcing he would be withdrawing troops immediately.

The cabinet meeting on Wednesday was the first time that Trump, himself, expressed his continuing commitment to Syria's Kurds, since his surprise announcement of a United States withdrawal. "We are proud that we can say that we as Syriac-Assyrian Christians have fought side by side with the U.S.". "That takes pressure off ISIS".

Kuwait's Deputy foreign minister Khaled Al-Jarallah said the Gulf state remained committed to the Arab League's decision and would reopen its embassy in Damascus once the organisation allowed it.

"If anybody but Donald Trump did what I did in Syria, which was an ISIS loaded mess when I became President, they would be a national hero".

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Some critics also have expressed fear of a rapid withdrawal of US troops.

Trump told Lt. Gen. Paul J. LaCamera, the head of U.S. forces fighting ISIS in the region, during his trip to Iraq last week that troops could have several months to ensure a succinct departure, two United States officials told the Times.

On Wednesday, Trump made clear his frustration with the never-ending "war on terror" that has followed the September 11, 2001, attacks. "Now when I start getting out the Fake News Media, or some failed Generals who were unable to do the job before I arrived, like to complain about me & my tactics, which are working".

"I'm going to ask him to sit down with his generals and reconsider how to do this". The State Department's Syria team led by James Jeffrey and Joel Rayburn and the president's national security adviser John Bolton are advocating a slow pullout, and the Pentagon is preparing a list of options for the president.

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Military officials have scrambled to translate Trump's shifting directives and comments into actual orders for commanders in Syria and Iraq to carry out.

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