Trump Defends Withdrawal of U.S. Troops From Syria

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -
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A U.S-backed Syrian Manbij Military Council soldier passes a U.S. position near the tense front line with Turkish-backed fighters, in Manbij, north Syria, in April. (AP Photo/Hussein Malla, File)

President Donald Trump on Thursday defended his decision to declare victory over Islamic State and completely withdraw U.S. troops from Syria, saying he was fulfilling a promise from his presidential campaign.

“Getting out of Syria was no surprise. I’ve been campaigning on it for years, and six months ago, when I very publicly wanted to do it, I agreed to stay longer. Russia, Iran, Syria & others are the local enemy of ISIS. We were doing there [sic] work. Time to come home & rebuild. #MAGA,” he wrote on Twitter.

“Does the USA want to be the Policeman of the Middle East, getting NOTHING but spending precious lives and trillions of dollars protecting others who, in almost all cases, do not appreciate what we are doing? Do we want to be there forever? Time for others to finally fight. Russia, Iran, Syria & many others are not happy about the U.S. leaving, despite what the Fake News says, because now they will have to fight ISIS and others, who they hate, without us. I am building by far the most powerful military in the world,” Trump wrote

He concluded with a threat: “ISIS hits us they are doomed!”