In clear terms Donald Trump criticised US wars in the Middle East

by Karl Müller

US President Donald Trump has declared that waging wars in the Middle East had been “the worst decision ever made in the history of our country”. Instead of wide approval he received cutting wind on the part of the NATO war mongers.

On 9 October the US President reacted in a very important twitter message to the reproaches targeted at his decision to withdraw the US troops from the North of Syria. It read:

“The United States has spent EIGHT TRILLION DOLLARS fighting and policing in the Middle East. Thousands of our Great Soldiers have died or been badly wounded. Millions of people have died on the other side. GOING INTO THE MIDDLE EAST IS THE WORST DECISION EVER MADE IN THE HISTORY OF OUR COUNTRY! We went to war under a false & now disproven premise, WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION. There were NONE! Now we are slowly & carefully bringing our great soldiers & military home.”

In the day as following this message some anglophone media, as for instance the “Washington Post”, quoted the President’s message, in most cases accompanied by sharp criticism targeting  the President. As for the German-speaking media there was only the Internet forum of Russia Today German which reported and commented the event on 11 October.
This is (unfortunately it is not!) amazing in view of the fact that Donald Trump’s statements  contained a sensation – and actually would have to be followed by a radical change of world policies. It is not the content of the statements that is sensational. This analysis of US wars in the Middle East has been well-known for long among those people, who have been observing them from a critical point of view. What is sensational is rather the fact that such statements are uttered by a US President in office. Something like that has not occurred ever since the year 2003, the year of the US invasion to Irak, neither by a US president nor by a government member of any European NATO ally.
Former German Bundeskanzler Gerhard Schröder had admitted – some years ago, when he no longer was in office – that the 1999 NATO war against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia with German participation during his chancellorship had been a war of aggression and a violation of international law. Those responsible in NATO have ignored the fact up to this very day – although Schröder’s statement had been correct and should have had consequences for all war parties. No chance! Despite the fact that 1999 actually was the date when Pandora’s Box was opened.
We have to wait and see whether the US President’s above mentioned statements will have consequences. However, everybody can refer to them, anybody who has for long been repelled by those US and NATO wars of the past years and has ever and again pointed to the injustice as well as to the victims and destruction caused by them. President Trump’s words should be published in large letters on large posters in all villages and cities of all NATO states as well as in all countries of the Middle East – actually  in all countries of this world.
How do we want to shape our future? Marching towards war and disaster as in the past years. Or remembering the insight that any country’s decision for the warpath will be the “worst decision ever taken in the history of our country”?
The US President has been vehemently criticised by different parties for his decision to withdraw the troops from the North of Syria. His decision – it was said – had been responsible for the invasion of Turkish troops and the Kurds’ sufferings. The Kurds – after fighting the IS together with US troops – were deserted and betrayed by the USA. Nobody has called to memory that the US forces – just like the troops of other NATO-states including the Turkish – have no right whatsoever to dwell on Syrian state territory. They were never asked by the Syrian government to administer help in military struggle or whatever. Quite the contrary: For a long time these foreign forces supported terrorist quarters in the country, who fought the Syrian government and unlawfully occupied territories of the country. The USA as well as other NATO states had decided on this course in an autocratic manner and in violation of international law.
I cannot be foreseen whether the deal of a five-day-cease-fire will lead to a lasting armistice. If international law should still have any significance the following has to be abided by above all: Before the Kurds may claim their legitimate rights in Syria, the Syrian state with its monopoly for the use of force must be reinstalled on its complete state territory. This might be facilitated by the Syrian army’s advancing into the North of the country. Negotiations might be opened in the near future between the Kurds’ legitimate representatives and the Syrian army, which can sort out what the rights and  possible special rights the Kurds are going to possess in the country. May be the intense negotiation policy conducted by the Russian government is aimed at stopping the violence and hostile war actions in Syria. This is what we would all wish for this maltreated country and the people living there or ready to come back to live there again.    •

Statement by the President of the Security Council on Syria

At the 8635th meeting of the Security Council, held on 8 October 2019, in connection with the Council’s consideration of the item entitled “The situation in the Middle East”, the President of the Security Council made the following statement on behalf of the Council:
“The Security Council welcomes the Secretary-General’s September 23, 2019 announcement of the agreement of the Government of the Syrian Arab Republic and the Syrian Negotiations Commission for a credible, balanced, and inclusive Constitutional Committee facilitated by the United Nations in Geneva.
The Security Council determines that the launch of the Syrian-owned and Syrian-led Constitutional Committee should be the beginning of the political process to end the Syrian conflict in line with UN Security Council Resolution 2254 (2015) that meets the legitimate aspirations of all Syrians.
The Security Council expresses its appreciation for the United Nations Special Envoy’s diplomatic engagement to finalize the agreement between the Syrian Arab Republic and the Syrian opposition to form the Constitutional Committee, emphasizes its strong support for Special Envoy Pedersen and the United Nations’ initiative to convene the first meeting of the Constitutional Committee in Geneva, Switzerland by October 30, 2019.
The Security Council reaffirms that there can be no military solution to the conflict in Syria, and that it can only be resolved through the full implementation of 2254.
The Security Council reaffirms its strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, unity, and territorial integrity of Syria.”

New York, Oktober 8, 2019


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