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Romney says troop pull from Syria will go down in history as a ‘terrible abandonment of our friends’

FILE - Mitt Romney talks to the media after addressing House and Senate Republicans during their caucus lunch meetings at the Captiol in Salt Lake City on Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2018. (Photo: Kristin Murphy, Deseret News)

Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, has made it no secret that he has been upset with the President’s decision to withdraw US troops from Syria.

The Utah Republican took to Twitter over the weekend to make that point known.


This came after other criticisms he made about President Trump asking for foreign leaders to investigate his Democratic rivals. A criticism that earned Romney an expletive-laced tweet from the president, calling Romney a “pompous ass.”


Joining KSL’s Dave and Dujanovic on Thursday morning, Romney reiterated his intent to call the president out when he does things he doesn’t agree with, and praise him when he does things that he agrees with.

“Oh I think he made a mistake in decisions in this regard, and I think you’ve seen virtual unanimity on both sides of the aisle. Republicans and Democrats have all said this is a terrible mistake,” Romney said.

The mistake, Romney says, isn’t a question about whether or not the US should have a peacekeeping force in Syria but as he sees it, abandoning allies.

“The real question is, do you abandon your ally, the Kurds, to add to being attacked and killed? And it just goes beyond the line, I think, for many of us,” he said.

Romney said the president’s decision to withdraw troops is hard to understand. Romney says there wasn’t any communication with the Senate as to what the president’s perspective is on the situation.

Romney says a big move like this is troubling, especially when the Senate’s Committee on Foreign Relations, a committee on which he sits, wasn’t told anything about the plans to move troops out of the area.

“You can’t just take the 150  people who’ve been providing peace and — and keeping the Turks from slaughtering the Kurds. You can’t just pull them out, without any warning to our friends, the Kurds even, so they can get out of the way. I mean, it’s really a very puzzling development of one. Obviously, we’re calling for hearings to understand just what has gone on here and why we have done something which will go down in the annals of American history is having been a terrible abandonment of our friends,” he continued.

Even though the physical number of troops that were taken out of the hot spot in Syria wasn’t very large, Romney says these small detachments of troops play an important role. This is because, he says, when there are American troops on the ground in these areas, they act as a deterrent to hostile nations and keep the world more peaceful.

The rest of the conversation

You can hear the full conversation with Senator Romney below: