Lindsey Graham Urges Trump: ‘Keep Those Troops in Syria’

By Susan Jones | April 9, 2018 | 5:55am EDT
President Donald Trump, visiting Ohio last month, talked about removing U.S. troops from Syria "very soon." (Photo: Screen grab)

( – “What happens in Syria matters to America,” Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) told ABC’s “This Week” on Sunday.

He was responding to President Trump’s recent remarks about removing U.S. troops from Syria “very soon.”

Graham on Sunday said he had dinner with incoming National Security Adviser John Bolton last week:

And he asked me, what's going to be my biggest challenge? And I said, it will be Syria. President Trump has taken the gloves off when it comes to fighting ISIS inside of Iraq. He has done the same in Syria. But he wants to somehow leave.

All I can tell President Trump, you building a wall to protect us from threats from the southern border, there is no wall you can build in the Mideast. The only way we can protect America from Mideast threats is to have our troops working with regional partners to have a virtual wall over there.

If you take these troops out of Syria, ISIS comes back, Iran begins to dominate Syria, and that's the end of us being a reliable ally. The Kurds that fought with us are going to get slaughtered by Turkey.

The entire region is going to melt down into a Sunni-Shia conflict. So Pompeo and Bolton need to explain to the president of the United States that what happens in Syria matters to America. There is no foreign government or force to outsource our national security.

Keep these troops in Syria. If you pull them out too soon, you'll have Iraq all over again with worse consequences.

President Trump, speaking in Ohio on March 29, noted that the U.S. is “knocking the hell out of ISIS.”


“We’ll be coming out of Syria, like, very soon,” Trump said. “Let other people take care of it now.”

Tom Bossert, the White House homeland security adviser, amplified that point on Sunday, when he said the United States has been providing “security for the whole world” for too long:

“It is time to move that pendulum back in a way that brings regional partners and others with equities in these matters all around the globe into putting their resources and their treasure and their boys and girls on the line, and not just American troops,” Bossert told ABC’s “This Week.”

“American troops aren't going to fix the six or seven different ongoing conflicts and wars going on in the Middle East or in Syria at this stage. We need regional partnership increased and we need U.S. presence decreased.”



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