‘I can’t even look at the atrocities’: U.S. troops say Trump’s Syria withdrawal betrayed an ally (MSN.com link): Watching the rapid disintegration of security in Syria and the U.S. withdrawal, Marty Palmer recalled the night an Islamic State car bomb exploded near the Kurdish unit partnered with his Army Special Forces team.
“I look at that event and it stands out to me as so representative of the sacrifice the Kurds made in the fight against ISIS,” Palmer said, using an acronym that describes the Islamic State. “It’s just one of many instances where they showed that type of bravery. The very next day, they were right back at it.”
The U.S.-backed militia has been one of America’s closest partners in the war against the Islamic State since 2014, and some 11,000 Kurdish fighters have been killed in combat against the terrorist group. But with President Trump’s orders to withdraw all 1,000 U.S. troops from northern in the face of a Turkish offensive, those who have served alongside Kurdish forces are left to consider America’s new place in the world.
Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy, asked Monday about the service members' criticism on Syria, said he likes candor, but that soldiers must not be disobedient. “Everybody has an opinion in a war of ideas,” he said, speaking at a conference by the Association of the U.S. Army. “But ultimately, when national policy decisions are made, we salute and move out.”