Trump mulls quick US pullout from Syria while advisers balk

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump expects to decide “very quickly” whether to remove U.S. troops from war-torn Syria, saying their primary mission was to defeat the Islamic State group and “we’ve almost completed that task.”

Trump’s comments, made to reporters at the White House on Tuesday, conflict with views of his top military advisers, some of who spoke at a separate event in Washington about the need to stay in Iraq and Syria to finish off the militant group, which once controlled large swaths of territory in both countries.

At a news conference with the presidents of the Baltic nations, Trump was asked whether he still favored pulling U.S. troops out of Syria.

“As far as Syria is concerned, our primary mission in terms of that was getting rid of ISIS,” Trump answered, using an acronym for the Islamic State group. “We’ve completed that task and we’ll be making a decision very quickly, in coordination with others in the area, as to what we will do.”

The mission is “very costly for our country and it helps other countries a helluva lot more than it helps us,” Trump said.

“I want to get out. I want to bring our troops back home. I want to start rebuilding our nation,” he said during the appearance with his counterparts from Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.

Article source: https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/trump-to-decide-very-quickly-on-us-pullout-from-syria/2018/04/03/f882fdba-37af-11e8-af3c-2123715f78df_story.html

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