By Ian Krietzberg
In a nonbinding bipartisan resolution passed on Oct. 16, the House of Representatives voted to condemn President Donald Trump’s sudden decision to withdraw U.S. military forces from Syria, according to NBC News.
“‘With one voice, we call on President Trump to support Kurdish communities, to work to ensure that the Turkish military acts with restraint, and to present a clear strategy to defeat ISIS,’” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said in a joint statement on Oct. 15, according to The Hill. “‘This resolution also urges (Turkish) President (Recep Tayyip) Erdogan to immediately cease unilateral military action in Syria.’”
According to The New York Times, the resolution passed 354 to 60, showing overwhelming bipartisan support — a fact that carries even greater poignancy as the impeachment inquiry against the president continues.
This resolution comes after Turkish military forces began to push further south into Syria, a long-threatened invasion that began after Trump pulled 50 U.S. troops back from the border in fear of a Turkish incursion, according to CNN.
Trump’s decision, according to The New York Times, enabled the Turkish incursion and resulted in his essential abandonment of the Kurds, an important U.S. ally in the fight against ISIS.
Trump tweeted about the events in Syria on Oct. 14.
“I am withdrawing the remaining United States service members from northeast Syria,” he stated. “As United States forces have defeated the ISIS physical caliphate, United States troops coming out of Syria will now redeploy and remain in the region to monitor the situation and prevent a repeat of 2014, when the neglected threat of ISIS raged across Syria and Iraq.”
In the same statement, Trump also included an explanation of how he will use aggressive economic sanctions as a weapon to stop the Turkish invasion.
This decision has resulted in a quick, bipartisan abandonment of the president, with Republican and Democratic senators alike publicly condemning his decision to abandon Kurdish allies.
“I worry we will not have allies in the future against radical Islam, ISIS will reemerge, & Iran’s rise in Syria will become a nightmare for Israel,” said Senator Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., a longtime supporter of Trump, in a tweet on Oct. 16. “I fear this is a complete and utter national security disaster in the making and I hope President Trump will adjust his thinking.”
In a statement released on Oct. 14, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnel acknowledged that for years, the U.S. and Syria had made the effort to put a stop to ISIS.
“Abandoning this fight now and withdrawing U.S. forces from Syria would re-create the very conditions that we have worked hard to destroy and invite the resurgence of ISIS,” the statement read.
He went on to express that “such a withdrawal” would invite both Iran and Russia to exploit the resulting Syrian power vacuum, which would be “catastrophic” for the U.S.