National Security Adviser John Bolton didn't want it. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo did not want it. But President Donald Trump did, and he finally got it: The official start of the US exit from Syria.
The administration fought openly for weeks when, and if – about taking back all 2,000 US armed forces from Syria after Trump's December announced he wanted his quick return.
The political struggle, which was traditionally the first hit in private before a decision was made public, revealed deep cracks between Trump and his leading national security officers over US engagement in the Middle East and the fight against ISIS. [1
In Israel on Sunday, Bolton told US troops to stay in Syria until two conditions are met: The remaining ISIS warriors still active in Syria are defeated and Turkey promises not to attack American Allied Kurdish warriors in northern Syria after America remains .
And on Thursday, Pompeo delivered a speech in Cairo, Egypt, explaining that "when America returns, chaos often follows" and promised that "America will not retire until the end of the terrorist struggle."
That Now it seems something false – for Friday morning, coal. Sean Ryan, a spokesman for the US leadership to defeat ISIS, told reporters that "the process of our deliberate withdrawal from Syria" has begun. It seems that only equipment – but not troops – is coming out of the country, but according to several reports.
Still, the US military has officially begun its mission in Syria. This means that even after a full week's assurance that America can reconsider a complete recall, it has progressed and begun that process.
"This is a management in disarray" Richard Haass president of the Council of Foreign-Thinking Thoughts tweeted on Friday in response to the news.
"We do not take orders from Bolton"
The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday that defense officials continued their plans to bring the US troops home in accordance with the president's orders, no matter what Bolton or Pompeo had said in recent days.
"Nothing has changed," an official for the newspaper Nancy Youssef and Dion Nissenbaum told. "We don't take orders from Bolton."
The report also noted that there are troops in Kuwait and Western Iraq ready to help their colleagues in Syria to leave as well as a ship full of marinas and aircraft leading to the region to protect troops while they retreat. In fact, it would increase the number of troops in the area to help with the recall.
There is no hard deadline for the withdrawal we know about, the administration now says, although earlier, it shifted the timeline from 30 days to four months. So the whole process can go on for weeks or even months.
But it seems quite clear that a drawdown is going on. The British-based Syrian Human Rights Observatory, which traces ground conditions in Syria, reported that the US military had begun moving equipment – about 10 armored vehicles and engineering machines – from a base in northeastern Syria.
And an official from Trump to Friday announced CNN that "some cargo has already moved" from Syria. Another official added that the Pentagon can provide temporary revocation updates so that the public – and probably the president – can see the military following orders.
Pompeo and Bolton may not agree with these orders, but at the end of the day, Trump is the commander, and his orders are the only ones that matter.