Published: Sat, February 02, 2019
Worldwide | By Angelina Lucas

Senate leader wants USA troops to stay in Syria, Afghanistan

Senate leader wants USA troops to stay in Syria, Afghanistan

Shanahan backed Trump's decision earlier this week to withdraw troops from Syria and indicated he supported the potential for a drawdown of the roughly 14,000 us troops in Afghanistan, calling ongoing diplomatic talks with the Taliban "encouraging".

John Thune of South Dakota, the Senate majority whip, came as the GOP-led chamber prepared to vote on an amendment breaking with Trump's plans to pull the USA military away from Syria and Afghanistan.

The move was a rare showing of opposition from Republican senators who consistently side with the president, revealing a possible breaking point for Senate Republicans who view some of the president's foreign policy approaches as risky.

"The precipitous withdrawal of United States forces from either country could put at risk hard-won gains and United States national security", reads the amendment, adding that "it is incumbent upon the United States to lead, to continue to maintain a global coalition against terror and to stand by our local partners". Since the December 19 pronouncement, then-Defense Secretary Jim Mattis has resigned, Republican and Democratic lawmakers have raised fierce concerns over the abrupt move and the administration has backtracked on its plans.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell took the lead on the amendment, saying, "ISIS and al Qaeda have yet to be defeated". "If we allow al Qaeda and ISIS, or both, to have a resurgence, they will attack the United States of America".

WASHINGTON ― A big bipartisan majority in the Senate bucked President Donald Trump over his foreign policy in the Middle East on Thursday, expressing their symbolic opposition to Trump's plans for a quick withdrawal of USA troops from their yearslong fight against terrorism overseas.

"Just because Trump is bungling Syria policy doesn't mean Democrats should endorse endless war, nor this amendment which asserts American forces are in Syria to fight Iran", Murphy wrote on Twitter as he headed to the Senate floor to speak against the measure. He said before the vote that: "I've been clear about my own views on these subjects".

Australia is a potential target in the US-China fight over Huawei
A profile of Huawei chief financial officer , Meng Wanzhou , is displayed on a computer at a Huawei store in Beijing, Dec 6, 2018. McCallum called on the Canadian government to release Meng, suggesting Canada was caught in the middle of a superpower struggle.

"Syria was loaded with ISIS until I came along".

The amendment to a broader Middle East Policy bill easily passed a preliminary procedural vote Thursday 68 to 23, with substantial support from both Democrats and Republicans. It is now time to start coming home and, after many years, spending our money wisely.

The Senate's Thursday rebuke is largely symbolic but is expected to be rolled into "a broader bipartisan Middle East policy bill expected to easily pass the Senate next week", according to the Times.

A vote on final passage of the amendment could come early next week.

But on Thursday, Trump claimed his intelligence chiefs - including Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats and CIA Director Gina Haspel - told him that they were misquoted by the press, although their testimony was aired live. We all saw that the day that he said it.

In late January, the House overwhelmingly passed a measure to prevent Trump from using federal funds to execute a withdrawal from North Atlantic Treaty Organisation. Ro Khanna and Mark Pocan, re-introduced legislation to force a vote on ending USA support of the Saudi-led coalition this week.

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