Report: U.S. Troops Prepare for "Full," "Rapid" Withdrawal From Syria

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Report: U.S. Troops Prepare for "Full," "Rapid" Withdrawal From Syria

This from CNN, which reports that a source in the in the Department of Defense has told them that the Trump administration has initiated steps to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria in a “rapid” manner. CNN:

Even though the US will continue to maintain troops in Iraq with the capability of launching strikes into Syria, a US withdrawal of ground forces would fulfill a major goal of Syria, Iran and Russia and risks diminishing US influence in the region.

The US has about 2,000 troops on the ground in the country, where they are primarily training local forces to combat ISIS. The US-backed and Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces have had some recent success against the terror group and are on the cusp of capturing the last major town held by ISIS east of the Euphrates.

This jibes with a tweet Trump sent out this morning indicating that he believes his mission in Syria has been accomplished:

There’s some debate about whether ISIS has truly been defeated—the Defense Department estimates there may be as many as 30,000 ISIS fighters in Syria and Iraq combined—but there’s little doubt that continued U.S. military presence in the country would only creep incrementally toward a quagmire, potentially decades long, of the kind seen in Iraq and Afghanistan.

As of now, the coalition forces are denying any change in status, saying that such reports are “designed to sow chaos and confusion,” though this could simply be because they would have preferred a more silent retreat that didn’t inspire potential recruitment surges among ISIS forces.