The New York Times reported: “The White House is drafting a presidential directive that calls on Defense Secretary James M. Mattis to devise plans to more aggressively strike the Islamic State, which could include American artillery on the ground in Syria and Army attack helicopters to support an assault on the group’s capital, Raqqa, officials said.”
REESE ERLICH, ReeseErlich2 [at] hotmail.com
Erlich is a Peabody award-winning foreign correspondent. He is the author of “Inside Syria: The Backstory of Their Civil War and What the World Can Expect,” distributed by Random House. His book tour next week will take him to New York City, Raleigh and Atlanta.
He said today: “The Trump administration is planning a major escalation in Syria, contradicting his supporters’ hopes for less overseas fighting. During the campaign Trump tried to convince voters that he opposed the Iraq War and would never let such a disaster take place on his watch. Yet the new administration has now asked the Defense Department to consider sending artillery and attack helicopters to fight in Syria. Supposedly aimed at fighting ISIS, in fact, such moves would seriously escalate the number of U.S. combat troops and increase the likelihood of conflict with Russia and Iran. While Trump proclaims a friendship with Vladimir Putin, escalating the number of U.S. troops in Syria will put him in direct conflict with Russia and Iran.
“More American soldiers and Syrian civilians’ lives are in danger. Under Obama, the U.S. spent $12 million per day just on the Syria War. How many billions more will be wasted by Trump?”