Trump’s giving the green light to Turkey to massacre our allies the Kurds is both evil and hurts our national security. ISIS may rise again because of this, and who will be our allies on the ground to help us beat them back? No one, because no one will trust us to have their back in the future. Retired Four-Star General and head of CentCom, Joseph Votel, and terrorism expert Elizabeth Dent wrote this about the danger of abandoning our partners, the Syrian Democratic Forces. consisting mainly of the Kurds.
Over four years, the SDF freed tens of thousands of square miles and millions of people from the grip of ISIS. Throughout the fight, it sustained nearly 11,000 casualties. By comparison, six U.S. service members, as well as two civilians, have been killed in the anti-ISIS campaign. Key to this effective relationship was mutual trust, constant communication, and clear expectations. The partnership was not without its difficulties. That included working through the December 2018 announcement of our sudden departure and our subsequent agreement with Turkey to pursue a security mechanism for the border areas. But each time, the strong mutual trust built on the ground between our military members and the SDF preserved our momentum. The sudden policy change this week breaks that trust at the most crucial juncture and leaves our partners with very limited options. . . .
A possible invasion from Turkey against the Kurdish elements of the SDF, coupled with a hasty U.S. departure, now threaten to rapidly destabilize an already fragile security situation in Syria’s northeast, where ISIS’s physical caliphate was only recently defeated. Nearly 2,000 foreign fighters, about 9,000 Iraqi and Syrian fighters, and tens of thousands of ISIS family members are being held in detention facilities and displaced-persons camps in areas under SDF control. What happens if we leave? The SDF has already stated that it will have to fortify defense mechanisms along the Syrian-Turkish border, leaving ISIS detention facilities and encampments with little to no security. This is particularly troubling, given that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the self-proclaimed caliph of ISIS, recently called on supporters to break fighters out of these facilities. There have also been violent attacks in the al-Hol refugee camp, where tens of thousands of women and children are housed and where ISIS sympathy runs rampant.
The Pentagon and White House later clarified that the U.S. was not abandoning the Kurds and did not support a Turkish incursion into Syria. But the damage may already be done, because it appears the Turks have taken the shift to signal a green light for an attack in the northeast. This policy abandonment threatens to undo five years’ worth of fighting against ISIS and will severely damage American credibility and reliability in any future fights where we need strong allies.
Iran and Hezbollah are using our abandonment of the Kurds against us. Iran’s Tasnim News Agency just published a story describing Hezbollah’s Secretary General Seyed Nasrallah’s reaction to our abandonment of our allies.
“No one can rely on (the United States of) America and an agreement struck with it because of the latter’s disloyalty and treachery,” Seyed Hassan Nasrallah said in an address to his supporters in a televised speech at Sayed al-Shuhadaa Complex in the Lebanese capital city of Beirut on Tuesday evening.
Nasrallah then pointed to President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw US forces from northeastern Syria, saying, “America broke faith with Kurds at once, and abandoned them. Such a fate awaits anyone who trusts Washington.”
“Americans can’t be trusted at all since they break promise with anyone who depends on them, and left them alone,” the Hezbollah chief said, Press TV reported.
Before today I would have said that Trump’s treasonous invitation to the Russians, Chinese, and Ukrainians to interfere with out election should be the first article of impeachment. I have changed my mind. The first article of impeachment should be our abandonment of our ally to genocide. And that article should mention the importance of acquiring Trump’s tax returns to see if he has conducted money laundering which would enable either Turkey or Russia to blackmail him. The Russians are happy to see us withdraw quickly from Syria and even if the Turks don’t have blackmail material against Trump, the Russians could have passed Kompromat to Turkey to leverage against Trump.
Many Republicans don’t care if Trump invites outside interference in our election. I suspect many secretly welcome it because they know it is the only way they can stay in power. But most do care about our national security and some are outraged by this backstabbing of the Kurds. So let’s make this the first article of impeachment. Let’s see the Republicans vote against an article of impeachment based on the Kurdish genocide. And if they do we should remind voters over and over again that their vote against impeachment was a vote for genocide. Never let the voters forget that the Republicans have Kurdish blood on their hands!
I would be happy to withdraw this suggestion if Trump immediately reverses himself in time to stop a massacre. Though Vogel and Dent wrote that Trump has clarified that he did not support a Turkish invasion, this is not enough. Trump needs to publicly state that he is halting the withdrawal and that he considers an attack on our Kurdish allies to be an attack against American interests. The onus to stop a massacre is on him, and if he cannot prevent one from happening then this should be the first article of impeachment. Let us hope he can prevent a massacre. Much as I would enjoy piling on new articles of impeachment, this is one article where the price paid in blood is not worth the extra grounds for impeachment.