Trump has surprise visit to Iraq

From Gezza:

In a surprise trip to Iraq, late on Christmas Night US President Donald Trump defended his decision to withdraw US forces from Syria where they have been helping battle Islamic State militants.

“We’re no longer the suckers, folks,” Trump told American servicemen and women at a base in western Iraq. “We’re respected again as a nation.”

Trump said it’s because of US military gains that he can withdraw 2000 forces from Syria. During his first visit to a troubled region, Trump also said he has no plans to withdraw US forces from Iraq.


Members of the military cheer as Trump speaks

He said that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has agreed to take out “any remnants” of Isis left in Syria. The US presence in Syria was not meant to be “open-ended,” he said, adding that other wealthy nations should pay for rebuilding Syria.

“The nations of the region must step up and take more responsibility for their future,” said Trump, who said there would be a “strong, deliberate and orderly withdrawal” of US forces from Syria.

More (quite a lot more) …
https://www.stuff.co.nz/world/americas/109612177/president-donald-trump-makes-surprise-visit-to-iraq

Leave a comment

27 Comments

  1. Gezza

     /  27th December 2018

    I’m having to have re-think about this decision. I may have been too hasty in my original condemnation.

    Reply
    • David

       /  27th December 2018

      Probably, Trump is usually right.

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  27th December 2018

        “The nations of the region must step up and take more responsibility for their future,” said Trump, who said there would be a “strong, deliberate and orderly withdrawal” of US forces from Syria.

        That, I like. He should still have consulted his allies – but between, Assad, Turkey & Russia ISIS would have a hard time getting re-established in Syria. And while it’s sad he’s shitting on the Kurds – they have a chance to discuss whether they want to hang on to ground that isn’t theirs with Erdy.

        Reply
      • Joe Bloggs

         /  28th December 2018

        “trump is usually right”

        Then explain why he lied about troop pay rises.

        Reply
    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  27th December 2018

      Good. Apology accepted and bookmarked for frequent re-use.

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  27th December 2018

        Bastard.

        Reply
        • Gezza

           /  27th December 2018

          (no offence)

          Reply
          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  27th December 2018

            Compliment accepted.

            Reply
            • Kitty Catkin

               /  27th December 2018

              The soldiers don’t seem to realise that he’s calling them suckers.

              When he say’s ‘We’re respected again.’ he doesn’t say by whom.

              He looks a right pillock in that army jacket.

            • Gezza

               /  27th December 2018

              As I said, I’m having to have a rethink. The reaction of the Iraqis to Trump walking in like he owns the place (see PG’s Reuters Tweet posted below) is interesting.

              Everything Trump’s doing has probably got Erdy and Putsie rubbing their hands with glee.

              Saudi Arabia has been humbled by Erdy. The UN & everyone else is starting at them with beady eyes now – they’ve really screwed up Yemen and still haven’t won. Probably because MBS is in charge of that shambles.

              Turkey is now one of The Major Players in the region – and he may have Trump’s measure. He’s got MBS’s.

              And Israel air-attacked Syria last night, going after what they say are Iranian military supplies for Hezbollah – violating Assad’s sovereignty & hacking off the Russians.

              Bibi is getting nervous, taking risks, and trying to suck the yanks back in.

              The Taliban have the upper hand in Afghanistan. Isis is pretty big there too.

              There’s a lot going on in the Middle East and Afghanistan/Pakistan. And not a lot going on in Trumpy’s head, in all probability.

            • Joe Bloggs

               /  28th December 2018

              Rather than playing the fool yet again, hows about explaining why trump lied about troop pay rises.

            • Pink David

               /  28th December 2018

              Poor Joe, you can’t understand his statements at all can you? The ‘troops’ will understand what he meant, just ask them. I assume you know a few?

  2. The Consultant

     /  27th December 2018

    I did laugh at this alternative history of the last two years..:

    Naturally, that’s the sort of division that frustrates the president. At her news conference, she accepted some of the blame but not all of it.

    “We’d probably have this same sort of angry agitation, no matter who won two years ago,” she said. “Does anyone really believe our country would be calmer or more unified under Trump?”

    Reply
  3. lurcher1948

     /  27th December 2018

    Did he have a round of golf…asking for a friend

    Reply
  4. lurcher1948

     /  27th December 2018

    His bone spurs are not a hindrance but there are problems with his spine
    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-46687909

    Reply
  5. Reply
    • Gezza

       /  27th December 2018

      I assumed he’d asked first. :/

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  27th December 2018

        Well, he told them he was coming. It’s not the same thing though:

        Abdul Mahdi’s office said in a statement that U.S. authorities had informed Iraq’s leadership of the president’s visit ahead of time. The statement said the Iraqi prime minister and U.S. president talked by telephone due to a “disagreement over how to conduct the meeting.

        https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-iraq/iraqi-lawmakers-criticize-trump-visit-as-blow-to-iraqi-sovereignty-idUSKCN1OP1AO

        This is going to be an interesting ride for Iraq and the US, because although the truppen gave him a standing ovation (as reported on 1ewes at 6) and he said all the right things to the truppen, he really has just taken liberties with their sovereignty & they are probably heartily pissed off about it.

        He might say that they’re going to stay there – but the Iraquis just might end up having to say: “No you’re not; fuck off out of here too” now.

        Morally, the US – & all the other countries they sucked in to invading that place on false pretences – really owe them megabillion$ for fixing up the place, seeing they’re ultimately responsible for wrecking it.

        It’ll be interesting to see whether this irritation blows over or whether the local population will be so insulted by his seeming to think they own the place will be the last straw.

        If he plays hardball and says we won’t sell you arms – well, we all know who will. 😐

        Reply
  6. iceemorains

     /  27th December 2018

    But her emaaiils!

    While the commander-in-chief can declassify information, usually the specific special operations unit is not revealed to the American public, especially while U.S. service members are deployed. Official photographs and videos typically blur the individual faces of special operation forces, due to the sensitive nature of their job.

    The president’s video posted Wednesday did not shield the faces of special operation forces. Current and former Defense Department officials told Newsweek that information concerning what units are deployed and where is almost always classified and is a violation of operational security.

    https://www.newsweek.com/donald-trump-navy-seal-iraq-video-1272102

    Reply
  7. Corky

     /  28th December 2018

    Hard o tell whether US troops are happy to be going home…or whether they agree with how Trump is running their homeland. I wasn’t expecting him to get such a warm reception.

    Reply
    • Gezza

       /  28th December 2018

      Well they were probably so glad to see him Corks – he took his bloody time getting there. And when he did get there he told they were wonderful and the best military in the world. One wouldn’t expect many boos for that from servicepersons.

      Funny thing is I was watching Aljaz this morning – they do an hour long interactive news item featuring social media items too and it turns out social media knew Trump was in the air and where he was going. It was all over twitter. Someone noticed the marine guard always outside the oval office when the prez is there had disappeared.

      He was tracked to Air Force One by tweeters. They knew he’d boarded with Melania. All the windows were blocked. AFOne was filmed flying over the UK and that was tweeted. Wikileaks had an online page where they were speculating where it was headed – why was it over Europe, then Turkey? And they guessed where it was going, and someone also tweeted when it landed in Iraq.

      It was an interesting development. It seems it’s very hard to keep a secret like this in this day of cellphones and social media, especially when he’s travelling in a plane as recognisable as AFOne. There are security implications too, obviously.

      Reply
      • Corky

         /  28th December 2018

        If all that is correct, then a major overhaul of security is needed. I have always wondered why ISIS( or any terrorist organisation for that matter) doesn’t have a squad on standby to take advantage of any chance, no matter how small, for taking out a Western leader.

        The Japanese had such a squad during WW2, tasked with ‘taking out’ General MacArthur.
        However, MacArthur’s security was too good for any attempt to succeed.

        Reply
        • Gezza

           /  28th December 2018

          Security would be tight I reckon. AFOne’s accompanied by fighters and while Twitter was abuz nobody could know the exact routes he was taking in the air or on the ground.

          Reply
          • Gezza

             /  28th December 2018

            That said, I suppose there’s a chance somebody could’ve launched a missile or two as it landed or took off but I’d expect that air base to have top notch defences and they’d be on alert.

            Reply

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