The White House released a statement revealing the U.S. military will be pulling out of northern Syria so Turkey can move in to control the area. President Trump had a phone call with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan earlier on Sunday to finalize the pullout.
“Turkey will soon be moving forward with its long-planned operation into Northern Syria. The United States Armed Forces will not support or be involved in the operation, and United States forces, having defeated the ISIS territorial ‘Caliphate,’ will no longer be in the immediate area,” the statement said.
The White House said because thousands of ISIS fighters and their families are being held in camps, “the United States will not hold them for what could be many years and great cost to the United States taxpayer. Turkey will now be responsible for all ISIS fighters in the area captured over the past two years in the wake of the defeat of the territorial ‘Caliphate’ by the United States.”
The Pentagon was reportedly “completely blindsided” by the order.
The decision to pull out of the region has been criticized and is being seen as abandoning the allied Kurds, who have fought alongside U.S. forces against ISIS, and are now at the mercy of the Turkish military.
Sen. (Lockheed) Lindsey Graham (R-SC) tweeted Monday morning if the “press reports are accurate this is a disaster in the making” and he will work in the Senate to ask for a reversal of the order.