Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyoming) appears to believe that President Donald Trump’s decision to remove troops from Syria, and thus abandoning Kurdish allies in the region to be attacked by a Turkish incursion, happened because the president was too focused on an impeachment inquiry against him.
In a Fox News interview she gave on Monday, Cheney suggested that Turkish leaders strategically played Trump, knowing his mind was elsewhere when they made demands for U.S. troop withdrawal from the region.
“It was not an accident that the Turks chose this moment to roll across the border,” Cheney said, according to a report from Raw Story. “And I think the Democrats have got to pay very careful attention to the damage that they’re doing with the impeachment proceedings.”
Cheney went onto say that military options remain available to the U.S. that can repair the damage brought about by Trump’s decision. “We cannot have a situation where ISIS is resurgent,” she added.
"The Democrats have got to pay very careful attention to the damage that they are doing with the impeachment proceedings.”@Liz_Cheney says Turkey senses U.S. "weakness" and has timed its invasion against U.S. allies. pic.twitter.com/i7jkn6WspK
— Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) October 14, 2019
Trump’s choice to remove a number of troops from Syria allegedly came about after a phone call conversation with Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, as detailed in earlier reporting from HillReporter.com.
During that conversation, Erdogan was reportedly very upset with Trump over not appearing with him publicly during the most recent United Nations General Assembly. Trump tried to explain his schedule didn’t permit him to do more meetings at that time, and offered to meet him sometime soon, an option that didn’t placate Erdogan.
“Trump tried to smooth it over” by agreeing to remove troops from the area, a former U.S. official explained to NBC News.
As a result of the decision, which Trump announced on Twitter, Turkey began an incursion into Syria, attacking and killing Kurds in the region, who had been allies of the U.S. military during the fight against ISIS. Dozens of Kurds have been reported killed so far, with much higher death counts expected by the time the incursion ends.