Trump’s Syria mistake

Sam Stroud

Staff Writer

Editors Note: The opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the opinions of the Tropolitan or its staff members. Address responses and critiques to

Last week President Trump decided -or was pushed depending on who you ask- to pull U.S. troops out of Northern Syria in the face of a Turkish invasion of the region. 

This is a disaster in the making. The Turks are invading Northern Syria for one purpose and one purpose only: to kill any and all Kurdish individuals in the area. 

For those not familiar, the Kurds are a Muslim ethnic group with their own culture located in multiple countries, including Syria, Iraq, Turkey, and Iran. 

Today, there are 30 million Kurds between these four regions, with half of them residing in Turkey. They have an established state in Iraq, Iraqi Kurdistan, but the U.S. does not recognize it. The Kurds fought with allied forces in 2015 against ISIS.

 This alliance allowed Kurds to spread extremely close to Turkey’s border, and thus Turkey sees them as a threat. The Kurds and Turks are enemies; Turkey persecutes Kurds while the Kurds in response launch terrorist attacks within Turkey.

Now, with so many Kurds on the Turkish border, Turkey is occupying the area to drive them back, and the United States is content to sit back and watch this international tragedy unfold. 

Trump’s withdrawal of military presence has allowed this atrocity to happen. 

So far, the Turkish invasion has displaced about 100,000 people and led to a mass exodus  of the Kurds of the region. In the meantime, Turkey is killing as many Kurds as possible and driving deeper into Syrian territory. 

The exact number is unknown as there is simply too much chaos to get an accurate reading of the situation. 

On Oct. 13, Kurdish forces allied themselves with the Russia-backed Syrian government in order to try and push back against Turkish troops. 

This whole event is a disaster for U.S. foreign policy, plain and simple. 

On one hand, the Kurds have always been pro-west and pro-United States in particular. They have helped with U.S. forces in fighting off regional threats such as ISIS and have been one of our closest allies in the region. 

This relationship is now in serious jeopardy, as the U.S. literally abandoned them overnight and has left them to fend for themselves against an overbearing Turkish army that can ultimately overwhelm them. 

Kurdish leaders have  promised the world that they will not forget this blatant act of betrayal by President Donald Trump that has led to countless deaths. 

From a strategic position, this is also a nightmare. The Kurds have now allied themselves with U.S. enemies, such as Bashar al-Assad, a brutal dictator who Trump launched limited airstrikes against in 2017 over the use of chemical weapons. 

Now one of our best and most reliable allies is fighting along side our enemy purely because we abandoned them. Syria is backed by Russia, and if the Kurds align with Syria then they are also aligning with Vladimir Putin, giving him more influence in a region where he already poses a significant threat. 

Nothing about this situation is good. The U.S. is signaling that we are fine with enemies slaughtering our allies, and Kurds no longer trust us. Our president looks like a complete fool and pathetic coward. 

When the media makes a moral proclamation, they usually overstate their case or are completely wrong. In this rare case though, I must agree with the general media consensus, the blood is on our hands this time.

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