Turkish president was shocked that Trump went along with demand for Syrian withdrawal. The Associated Press is reporting that President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw troops from Syria crystallized during a December 14 phone call with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. According to the news agency, the decision was “made hastily, without consulting his national security team or allies, and over strong objections from virtually everyone involved in the fight against the Islamic State group, according to U.S. and Turkish officials.”One of the surprising details of the report is that Erdogan himself was taken aback at how successful he was in convincing Trump on the Syrian matter. Before the phone call, the consensus position that the Trump administration had reached, backed by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis, was that Trump would tell Erdogan to back off from his threats to attack Kurdish forces in Syria.
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