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Published: Monday, October 07, 2019 @ 12:22 PM
— Facing bipartisan criticism after he ordered U.S. military forces to withdraw from Kurdish areas in northern Syria, President Donald Trump on Monday threatened to 'destroy' the Turkish economy, if the Turks do anything “off limits” as they move their own troops into Kurdish-held areas along the Turkish border with Syria.
On Twitter, the President said "if Turkey does anything that I, in my great and unmatched wisdom, consider to be off limits, I will totally destroy and obliterate the Economy of Turkey."
In a series of tweets, the President did not specifically say what he would consider going “too far” for the Turks.
Mr. Trump's decision to withdraw U.S. forces from Kurdish regions is something that Turkey's government has wanted to happen, part of that country's own dispute with the Kurds.
As I have stated strongly before, and just to reiterate, if Turkey does anything that I, in my great and unmatched wisdom, consider to be off limits, I will totally destroy and obliterate the Economy of Turkey (I’ve done before!). They must, with Europe and others, watch over...— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 7, 2019
....the captured ISIS fighters and families. The U.S. has done far more than anyone could have ever expected, including the capture of 100% of the ISIS Caliphate. It is time now for others in the region, some of great wealth, to protect their own territory. THE USA IS GREAT!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 7, 2019
In Congress, members of both parties were highly critical of the President's decision to pull back U.S. troops, which sparked the resignation last year of Defense Secretary James Mattis.
"Withdrawing U.S. forces from northern Syria is a catastrophic mistake that puts our gains against ISIS at risk and threatens America’s national security,"" said Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY).
"If I'm an ISIS fighter, I've got a second lease on life," said Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who went on Fox News in what seemed like a bid to send his message of disapproval straight to the President.
"This impulsive decision by the President has undone all the gains we've made," Graham said on "Fox and Friends."
Lindsey Graham calls in to Fox & Friends & calls Trump's decision to abandon the Kurds "impulsive."— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) October 7, 2019
"I hope I'm making myself clear how shortsighted & irresponsible this decision is in my view," he says. "This to me is just unnerving to its core." pic.twitter.com/URH0DVA1bo
A number of Democrats also made their objections clear.
"Today’s announcement of a pullback of U.S. forces will undo all the hard fought gains of the U.S. military and its partners in the region,” said Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH).
But for others, the President is simply following through on a campaign pledge to stop what critics say are 'endless wars' in places like Syria and Afghanistan.
"I stand with @realDonaldTrump today as he once again fulfills his promises to stop our endless wars and have a true America First foreign policy," tweeted Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY).