Trump withdrawing 1200 additional troops from Iraq
President Donald Trump is making good on another one of his campaign promises by announcing the withdrawal of another 1200 troops from the Middle East. The president has been a vocal critic of past administrations getting the country into “endless wars.”
According to General Frank McKenzie, commander of U.S. Central Command, the number of troops in Iraq will be reduced from 5,200 to 3,000.
“This reduced footprint allows us to continue advising and assisting our Iraqi partners in rooting out the final remnants of ISIS in Iraq and ensuring its enduring defeat,” McKenzie said. “This decision is due to our confidence in the Iraqi Security Forces’ increased ability to operate independently.”
McKenzie continued, “this decision is a clear demonstration of our continued commitment to the ultimate goal, which is an Iraqi Security Force that is capable of preventing an ISIS resurgence and of securing Iraq’s sovereignty without external assistance.”
Trump said that he looks forward to a time when the U.S. doesn’t have to have a presence in Iraq.
“So, at some point, we obviously will be gone,” Trump said. “We look forward to the day when we don’t have to be there, and hopefully Iraq can live their own lives and they can defend themselves, which they’ve been doing long before we got involved.”
White House aides told reporters to expect another announcement soon on troops being pulled out of Afghanistan as well.
Kentucky Congressman Thomas Massie (R) praised the president’s move. The libertarian-leaning congressman often speaks out against US foreign intervention.
“It’s past time to bring our troops home from Iraq and Afghanistan. President Trump is winding down the “forever wars” he inherited from D.C.’s political classes,” tweeted Massie.
Trump also made good on his campaign promise by reducing the number of U.S. troops in Syria earlier in his first term. He also plans to remove 12,000 troops currently stationed in Germany.
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