The Republican Party is condemning President Donald Trump for his rash decision to abandon the Kurds -- the loyal U.S. ally that destroyed ISIS -- after a single phone call with Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan.
U.S. media are reporting the troop withdrawals had already begun Monday. Erdogan on Sunday announced the Turkish Army will soon launch a major offensive against the Kurds in areas abandoned by the U.S. Army.
Trump on Sunday announced the withdrawal of the more than 1,000 U.S. Army troops stationed in northern Syria that had been serving a buffer between the Kurds and the Turkish Army. These U.S. troops were working closely with the Kurdish-led forces to stamp-out remnants of ISIS and prevent a resurgence of the murderous terrorist group.
The withdrawal effectively gives the Turkish Army a green light to move into the area being vacated by the Americans and attack the Kurds. Erdogan has long vowed to destroy the Kurds, including the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), the U.S. ally that played a major role in eliminating the ISIS caliphate.
One of the armed Kurdish groups, the PKK or the Kurdistan Workers Party, has fought for independence against Turkey in its quest to establish an independent Turkish state. The Turks have long considered the Kurds as terrorists and have mounted military campaigns against them in the past. Turkey has long promised to cleanse northern and northeastern Syria of the Kurds.
Ranking Republicans in the U.S. Congress are coming together to denounce Trump for betraying and stabbing the Kurds in the back at the request of Erdogan. Senate majority leader Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) warned Trump the "precipitous withdrawal" of U.S. forces will only benefit Russia, Iran and the Assad regime in Syria. McConnell also said the U.S. withdrawal will allow ISIS to regroup.
"A precipitous withdrawal of U.S. forces from Syria would only benefit Russia, Iran, and the Assad regime," said McConnell. "And it would increase the risk that ISIS and other terrorist groups regroup."
"I urge the President to exercise American leadership to keep together our multinational coalition to defeat ISIS and prevent significant conflict between our NATO ally Turkey and our local Syrian counterterrorism partners," said McConnell.
Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC), the most sycophantic of Trump's supporters in the Senate, called Trump's decision "a disaster in the making" that showed the United States is an unreliable ally.
Graham said he will introduce a Senate resolution opposing Trump's withdrawal and asking for a reversal. He also said he and Democratic Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) intend to introduce bipartisan sanctions against Turkey if it invades Syria. Both senators will also call for Turkey's suspension from NATO if they attack Kurdish forces.
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), who serves with Graham on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, warned that pulling back troops in northern Syria is a "grave mistake that will have implications far beyond Syria."
"It would confirm #Iran's view of this administration & embolden than to escalate hostile attacks which in turn could trigger much broader & more dangerous regional war," according to Rubio.