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Mattis Signs Order to Withdraw US Troops From Syria

Mattis Signs Order to Withdraw US Troops From Syria

Trump's abrupt decision to withdraw all 2,200 US troops fighting ISIS in Syria, as well as up to half of the 14,000 in Afghanistan, is thought to have led to Mattis' decision to resign.

While Mattis' resignation followed Trump's announcement that he would soon pull all of the approximately 2,000 USA troops out of Syria, officials said that the resignation was the result of an accumulation of disagreements.

Trump announced on Sunday that he would remove Mattis and replace him with his deputy, Patrick Shanahan, instead of allowing a successor to be confirmed and Mattis to conduct a proper transition over a two-month period. When he picked Mattis to be defence secretary before the start of his presidency, Trump showered praise on him, revelling in the general's battlefield valour, calling him by his nickname "Mad Dog" and comparing him to the decorated second world war Army general George Patton. That decision may also be accompanied by a similar drawdown order for US troops in Afghanistan, where Trump initiated a moderate surge after an August 2017 policy announcement. Shanahan worked for more than three decades at Boeing Co and was a senior vice president before he became Pentagon deputy in July 2017.

Brett McGurk, who I do not know, was appointed by President Obama in 2015.

On Sunday, Trump announced that Mattis would be leaving the Pentagon on January 1, two months earlier than planned.

While Mattis' resignation followed Trump's announcement that he would soon pull all of the approximately 2,000 US troops out of Syria, officials said that the decision was the result of an accumulation of disagreements. "Some thought I shouldn't, I thought I should", Trump tweeted Saturday, foreshadowing his displeasure and the Sunday announcement. Mattis had been at work on Friday, and defense officials had insisted he was planning to stay through February, when he would attend a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation defense ministers meeting.

"It's all one big one story and that story is about the fitness or unfitness of Donald Trump to be president of the United States", Bernstein said. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., who was among those attending.

US officials said they don't know if Shanahan will be Trump's nominee to replace Mattis.

Mr Trump wrote: "I just had a long and productive call with President @RT_Erdogan of Turkey".

"If anybody but your favorite President, Donald J. Trump, announced that, after decimating ISIS in Syria, we were going to bring our troops back home (happy & healthy), that person would be the most popular hero in America", he tweeted.

Bernstein concluded: "They're talking to each other, there is coming to be a much greater consensus that he is unfit to be the president of the United States".

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