What really happened on Tuesday when Trump called an emergency meeting with the national security council?
We know Trump gave the order to prepare for withdrawing from Syria, but CNN reports that Trump grew "irritated" during the meeting because no one would support him. Secretary of Defense James Mattis and CIA Director Mike Pompeo both told Trump that immediately withdrawing would be a mistake.
Just yesterday we discussed how abandoning our Kurdish allies in the region will open the door for Turkey, Russia, and Iran to move in and, according to CNN's report, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff himself said the same thing during their meeting.
During the meeting with his national security council at the White House, Trump was told by top advisers such as Gen. Joseph Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, that leaving Syria now would provide an opening for Russia, Turkey and Iran to advance their own interests in the country, which run counter to the United States'. The leaders of those countries are meeting in Ankara this week to discuss their own path forward in Syria.
At one stage, Dunford asked the President to state explicitly what he wanted to see happen in Syria, according to an administration official.
Trump reportedly responded to Dunford by saying he wants them to withdraw within six months which the Pentagon is denying for obvious reasons.
No one knows if Trump will actually give the order or if he'll simply forget about all of this by next week. In either case, the Joint Chiefs should probably prepare for the worst case scenario because Trump could just as easily pop off again when he remembers.
Even if you did not agree with every military decision made by the President Obama, no one could credibly say he made decisions on a whim or without an exceptional amount of deliberation. He didn't take anything lightly.