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Oil drives Trump's Mideast policy

What was the real reason President Trump abandoned our Kurdish allies and ceded strategic, critical territory to the Syrian regime, Russia, and Iran? What was so valuable that he was willing to telegraph to our allies around the world that America can’t be trusted to keep its word? Could it be Jed Clampett’s “black gold”?

Trump initially said he wanted simply to get the US out of lengthy mid-East wars. But we aren’t leaving Syria and we certainly aren’t leaving the mid-East and our soldiers aren’t coming home! Defense Secretary Esper responded that America’s mission in Syria is unchanged from its original purpose of defeating the Islamic State, yet 500 troops have been moved into northern Syria to “deny ISIS access to oil revenue”. Yet the President pronounced the defeat and end of ISIS but then zeroed in on the oil fields and said he “might get one of our big oil companies to go in and do it properly”. When he announced al-Baghdadi’s death---and I give him credit for taking al-Baghdadi out---he lamented that Syria and others in the region had locked US companies out of oil leases. Remember, Mr. Trump said in 2016 “to the victor belongs the spoils when you have a war” and referenced oil as a spoil. Why does it always come down to money for this man? That oil isn’t ours to exploit. It belongs to the Syrian state. And how can he talk out of one side of his mouth about getting out of the mid-East while keeping soldiers in the oil fields and sending other soldiers to Saudi Arabia? There always seems to be a quid pro quo with the President.

We just ceded our moral authority and besmirched our good name abroad for oil that isn’t even ours. Shameful.

Regina A. Smith


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