President Trump, who has long wanted to withdraw troops from the war-torn region, suggested on Twitter Wednesday that the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) is defeated and therefore, there is no reason to be there.
“We have defeated ISIS in Syria, my only reason for being there during the Trump presidency,” Mr. Trump tweeted Wednesday morning, without explicitly confirming an order to look to withdraw troops.
The Pentagon was not as definitive, and Mr. Trump’s own administration has suggested the work in Syria isn’t over.
“At this time, we continue to work by, with and through our partners in the region,” Pentagon spokesman Col. Rob Manning told reporters in a statement.
Rep. Adam Kinzinger, a veteran of the U.S. Air Force who served in Iraq and Afghanistan and now serves on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said it’s “simply not true” ISIS is defeated in Syria.
Two weeks ago, Special Envoy Brett McGurk said the end of ISIS will be a long-term initiative, and “nobody is declaring mission accomplished.”