The United States Senate rebuked on Monday President Donald Trump’s plan to withdraw American troops from Syria and Afghanistan.
The Republican-controlled Senate voted 70-26 for the amendment sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. The measure said that the Islamic State (IS) and al-Qaeda militants still pose a serious threat to the US, and it warns that “a precipitous withdrawal” of US forces from those countries could be a retrograde step, and “allow terrorists to regroup, destabilise critical regions, and create vacuums that could be filled by Iran or Russia.”
“It would acknowledge the plain fact that al-Qaeda, IS, and their affiliates in Syria and Afghanistan continue to pose a serious threat to our nation,” McConnell said.
Fifty Republican senators voted for the amendments, while only three Republicans supported Trump’s withdrawal plan.
Rand Paul, one of the three Republican Senators who supported Trump, said, “Enough is enough, and money spent in wars should spent in homes.” He added, “I want to compliment President Trump for being bold and brave.”
Trump surprisingly tweeted last December about his plan to withdraw US troops from Syria, arguing that the IS group had been defeated, even though his intelligence chiefs said last week that it remains a threat.
Trump also expressed his intention to pull out 14,000 US soldiers from Afghanistan. Some senators supported Trump’s plan, yet they criticised his sudden announcement.
The US Secretary of Defence, James Mattis, resigned after Trump’s deceleration to pull out the national troops from Syria and Afghanistan.
During an interview a few days ago with The New York Times, Trump said, “I didn’t like the job he was doing. I wasn’t happy with it. I got him more money than the military has ever seen before. And I wasn’t happy with the job that he was doing at all. And I said it’s time”.
The US has had a military presence in Afghanistan since 2001 following the September 11 attacks. It was supported by the UK, Canada, Australia, and all NATO members. It was known as the US invasion of Afghanistan.