US Troops Leave Syria

| October 22, 2019

US troops are leaving Syria but Iraq doesn’t want them to stay in Iraq:

BAGHDAD (AP) — U.S. troops leaving Syria and heading to neighboring Iraq do not have permission to stay in the country, Iraq’s military said Tuesday as American forces continued to pull out of northern Syria after Turkey’s invasion of the border region.

The statement appears to contradict U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper, who has said that under the current plan, all U.S. troops leaving Syria will go to western Iraq and the military would continue to conduct operations against the Islamic State group to prevent its resurgence in the region.

President Donald Trump ordered the bulk of U.S. troops in Syria to withdraw after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan made it clear in a phone call that his forces were about to invade Syria to push back Syrian Kurdish fighters whom Turkey considers terrorists. – article

Category: Iraq

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G. T. F.O.
See? How easy was that??
Let Iran and Iraq and Russia and Libya and Turkey and the Afghans deal wit hit.

5th/77th FA

^THIS^^WORD^^DITTO^ Pull EVERYTHING we have in the entire region the eff out, make one more low level pass with aerial artillery platforms and blow hell out of what couldn’t be loaded up and removed. LEAVE NOTHING but a smoking hole. Leave a carrier group close by enough to shake the big stick now and again.

It’s about time this happened.

Slow Joe

Time to get out of the Middle Beast.
They got nothing we need.
Nothing we want.


We could at least leave the ammo and supplies to our allies, the Syrian Kurds, who fought and died so that no U.S. ground troops were needed to invade Raqqah.

Slow Joe

Nah. They didn’t fought and died for US troops. They did for their own reasons, to defend their local turf, and to get closer to their political dream of an independent Kurdistan.

I see no reason for yet another Muslim state.

A Proud Infidel®™

I second leaving what we can for the Kurds that allied with us, but as for the rest of that Godforsaken hellhole known as the Middle East, I say we pull out and let them hack each others’ heads off! One, it’s not worth even another drop of American Blood and two, we’ve already drilled and tapped oil reserves to where we can give the Middle East the middle finger.


Amen! We are energy independent/net exporter. Let them mess with each other. Uh, by the way, you guys (in the Middle East), Israel is off limits. Mess with that, eat a nuke.


Set up Incirlik 2.0 in Iraqi Kurdistan – the Kurds are the only people in the area who actually want a US presence, so put the regional airbase there. Aside from that and the occasional special force mission to deal with ISIS 2.0 or Green Berets training the locals, they apparently do not want our help, so don’t stick around.


“U.S. troops leaving Syria and heading to neighboring Iraq do not have permission to stay in the country, Iraq’s military said Tuesday…”


Reminds me of this for some reason:

““If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and man.”

― Mark Twain”

The Iraqis snark may not be a bite, but it is definitely a nip.

Slow Joe

Excellent quote.

Slow Joe

Wasn’t Papa Bush who sent the first troops to Saudistan?


Since 1948, when we recognized and then allied with Israel. Prior to that we had little ME involvement. Then the region became strategic with our former gas dependence.


Folks need to understand the difference between “allies” and “co-belligerants”. The latter does not suffice for the former.

The enemy of my enemy is my enemy’s enemy. Nothing more.

How sane professionals can botch both the above concepts defies reason.

Cameron Kingsley

The only country I have any sympathy and support for is Israel. Definitely one country that can handle herself in that hellhole we call the Middle East.


President Trump’s National Security Strategy offers some perspective on this.

First off, it clearly identifies Russia, Iran, and VEOs (Violent Extremist Organizations) like ISIS among the five threats challenging and competing with the US (China and North Korea are the other two).

In the chapter laying out regional strategy it says this:

Middle East:
‘The United States seeks a Middle East that is not a safe haven or breeding ground for jihadist terrorists, not dominated by any power hostile to the United States, and that contributes to a stable global energy market.’

These seem like reasonable goals to me.

Under priority military actions for the Middle East, it goes on to say ‘We will retain the necessary American military presence in the region to protect the United States and our allies from terrorist attacks and preserve a favorable regional balance of power.’

‘We will work with partners to neutralize Iran’s malign activities in the region’

CENTCOM’s posture statement says this: Russia is focusing increasing attention to the Middle East, in part due to its geographical proximity, but also to reestablish its image as an influential global power. Russia invests in the Suez Canal development and is a co-member with China in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.

So, the only question is, are we maintaining sufficient military presence in the region to accomplish those goals?

Looking at it from a geopolitical standpoint, removing our presence from Iraq and Syria gives Iran essentially unrestricted ground access through Iraq to funnel weapons and fighters to Syria IOT influence the situation there and ultimately threaten Israel.

It also cedes the leadership role in the region to Russia, who will gladly take the job, enhancing their legitimacy while simultaneously degrading ours.

The appearance of betraying the Kurds doesn’t help, and it will make it harder for us to find partners in the region if we need to.

Slow Joe

Again, we didn’t betray the kurds.
They used us for their own ends, for their own security and their goal of achieving an independent Kurdistan.


Of course they did, just as we used them for our own ends. Every adult in the room knows that. Its called realism in IR circles.

I think what you mean is that the Kurds would have fought ISIS without us. Of course they would have- but they didn’t. They fought ISIS with us- not the Russians, not the Iranians.

To others in the region (and around the world), it looks like we betrayed the Kurds. It makes the President’s policy of Principled Realism look like a lie. And it will make it less likely that others will support us.

Slow Joe

The middle east policy has always been stupid.

We are never going to win the propaganda war, and in the middle east everybody believes in propaganda and conspiracy theories.

Saddam Hussein claimed he won the Gulf War 1 because the Papa bush didn’t remove him from power. And every motheeffer in the Middle East believe them, because in the Muslim mind, there is no such a thing as a limited war.

In the ME, noone will ever believe we have good intentions and limited goals. We will always be the evil imperialistic empire, stopped short of our goals of complete conquest and the destruction of islam by the brave jihadis.

They project their goals on us. That’s why they will never believe we have a limited goal.


Iraq is probably upset because they only got $82,018,707.00 in US aid in 2019. That is down from
$1,481,722,677.00 they got in 2018.

Jus Bill

If things work out the way I think they will, Russia has just inherited their next Afghanistan, and we just vacated our most recent Vietnam.


Ouch! Hopefully, Russia remembers Afghanistan.

Slow Joe

I have no problem with Russia getting in a quagmire in the ME.

That will lower the amount of money they have to develop new technologies, and will train his army on the wrong kind of war from when, if, we cross swords one day.