Members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Monday called for administration officials to testify before Congress about President Trump
‘s decision to yank U.S. troops from northern Syria.
The White House announced on Sunday night that Ankara was moving forward with a long-threatened offensive in northeastern Syria and that U.S. troops would not be in the “immediate area” when it happens.
Sens. Chris Murphy
(D-Conn.) and Mitt Romney
(R-Utah) said in a joint statement on Monday that administration officials must come before the Foreign Relations panel in the wake of the decision, which has been panned on Capitol Hill by members of both parties.
“The Administration must come before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and explain to the American people how betraying an ally and ceding influence to terrorists and adversaries is not disastrous for our national security interests,” Murphy and Romney said.
“As Chairman and Ranking Member of the Middle East subcommittee, we will be working with Committee leadership to assure that the Administration appears before the Committee as soon as possible,” they added.
Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) added that the Foreign Relations Committee and the Senate Armed Services Committee, both of which he serves on, “need to call DOD and State Department witnesses to come before Congress and explain this immediately.”
The push for administration officials to testify comes as Republicans are urging Trump
to change his mind, even as he appeared to double down on Twitter on Monday.
“The Kurds fought with us, but were paid massive amounts of money and equipment to do so. They have been fighting Turkey for decades. I held off this fight for … almost 3 years, but it is time for us to get out of these ridiculous Endless Wars, many of them tribal, and bring our soldiers home,” Trump tweeted
But lawmakers are warning the decision will bolster the ISIS and undercut the Kurds, a crucial ally in the region.
“After enlisting support from the Kurds to help destroy ISIS and assuring Kurdish protection from Turkey, the U.S. has now opened the door to their destruction. This severely undercuts America’s credibility as a reliable partner and creates a power vacuum in the region that benefits ISIS,” Murphy and Romney said in their joint statement.