The permanent government is having a hard time adjusting to the idea that the US might actually withdraw from one of its wars. From Justin Raimondo at antiwar.com:
The other day President Trump told his audience at a rally in Ohio that US troops are leaving Syria “very soon.” “Let others take care of it,” he said, “it’s time to build up our own country. It’s time to bring them home.”
The foreign policy Establishment, the military, and the pro-jihadist “humanitarian interventionists” of the liberal-left (e.g., Nicholas Kristof), went ballistic. Oh noes! You can’t do that! What about Bashar al-Assad, the Very Bad Dictator who’s been protecting religious minorities from US-funded head-choppers? He’ll be left in power, and we can’t have that! The Democrats on Twitter reacted by denouncing Trump – because wars are bad only if Republicans start them.
While the counterintuitive moral posturing of the Nicholas Kristofs of this world probably has a minimal impact on the decision-making process in the White House, the US military does indeed have a say – and they, along with their civilian allies in the sprawling national security bureaucracy, aren’t afraid to contradict a sitting president. As the Washington Post gleefully reports:
“President Trump on Tuesday repeated his desire to quickly ‘get out’ of Syria, even as his top commander for the Middle East outlined the need for an ongoing military presence there.
“‘A lot of very good military progress has been made over the last couple of years, but the hard part, I think, is in front of us,’ said Gen. Joseph L. Votel, head of U.S. Central Command. Upcoming efforts, he said, include the military’s role in ‘stabilizing [Syria], consolidating gains’ and ‘addressing long-term issues of reconstruction’ after the defeat of the Islamic State.
“The two spoke simultaneously in Washington. Votel, joined in remarks at the US Institute of Peace by the administration’s top diplomatic envoy to the U.S.-led coalition against the militants and by the head of the US Agency for International Development, discussed the need to align military operations with those of diplomatic and aid activities on the ground.
“Barely a mile away, Trump told a White House news conference that ‘I want to get out. I want to bring our troops back home.’”
To continue reading: Trump vs. the Permanent Government