Exactly the kind of 'pullout' we've come to expect from Trump
The latest in a series of backdowns from a total US withdrawal from Syria announced late last year, the White House has announced Thursday that 200 US troops, roughly 10% of the current force, will be staying in Syria even after the pullout is completed.
In an incredibly non-specific attempt at elaboration, the White House said those 200 troops will remain in Syria “for a period of time.” Hawkish Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) further declared that the US troops will be confronting Iran, fighting ISIS, and protecting the Kurds from Turkey.
That’s a tall order for 200 people, even if given an entire “period of time” to accomplish it. Suggestions are the US troops will be part of an “international stabilizing force,” though it’s unclear who, if any, other nations will be involved.
The US had previously tried and failed to convince Britain and France to stay while they left Syria, and it may ultimately be that this shift is intended to keep the Western European nations involved in the war.