President Trump Visits Iraq During Holiday
President Trump Visits Troops
President Donald Trump left the United States on Christmas day with the first lady to make a visit to Iraq. During the surprise visit the President met with troops at the Al Asad Air Base.
The trip was very secret as Air Force One was able to take off in Washington and land west of Bagdad without any reporting of the trip until after landing. Currently, the U.S. still has greater than 5,000 troops supporting Iraq to fight against the Islamic State group ISIS.
The president noted that it was “pretty sad” that even though the U.S. has spent so much money in the Middle East, flying in on Air Force One had to be a secret due to safety concerns.
Trump's Iraq Tweet
Donald Trumps Iraq Speech
The Campaign Promise
Trump's visit came after he had gone against the views of the some of his top advisors of national security. The decision to withdrawal from Syria is concerning military strategists as there are theories going around that this move will stimulate the growth of extremists in the Middle East region.
Trump is still sticking by his campaign promise to pull U.S. troops out of areas such as Afghanistan, Syria and Iraq. After arriving, Trump told service members "We're no longer the suckers, folks. We're respected again as a nation."
The trip came a week after Trump ordered all American soldiers and diplomats out of Syria by tweet. Secretary James Mattis signed orders to pull troops out of Syria on December 23rd. While in Iraq the president told reporters that Iraq can still serve as a base to fight the Islamic State if necessary.
Criticisms Before the Visit
The President has taken some heat for nearly making his two-year mark in office without visiting troops on active duty. In a recent interview with Chis Wallace Trump was asked why he hadn’t visited troops in Iraq or Afghanistan during his first two years in office. Trump replied "Well, I think you will see that happen." Trump’s last two predecessors visited Iraq in their time in office. There is a notable difference in that George W. Bush and Barak Obama visited early in their first terms.
Trump, D. J. (2018, December 25). Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump). Retrieved December 26, 2018, from https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump
Superville, D. (2018, December 26). Trump in Iraq on first visit to troops in troubled region. Retrieved December 26, 2018, from https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/trump-in-iraq-on-first-visit-to-troops-in-troubled-region/ar-BBRsYwb?ocid=spartanntp
Fedschun, T., & Miles, F. (2018, December 26). Trump, first lady in Iraq for surprise visit with troops. Retrieved December 26, 2018, from https://www.foxnews.com/politics/trump-visiting-troops-in-iraq-defends-syria-pullout-plan
Al Asad Airbase. (2018, November 14). Retrieved December 26, 2018, from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Al_Asad_Airbase
© 2018 James Smith