WASHINGTON, D.C. – House Armed Services Committee Chairman Adam Smith (D-WA) today issued the following statement in response to the Trump Administration’s decision to deploy additional military personnel and assets to Saudi Arabia just days after abandoning our Kurdish partners in Syria.
“President Trump has done untold harm to America’s standing in the world by currying favor with corrupt regimes, instead of respecting longstanding global partnerships and alliances. His latest being the withdrawal of military support for the Kurds, who have proven to be among our fiercest partners in the fight against ISIS.
“The President claims he wants to put an end to ‘forever wars’ but his rhetoric and policy don’t match. Today, his Defense Department announced that the United States will deploy additional military assets to the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility in order to ‘assure and enhance the defense of Saudi Arabia.’ This decision does not bring us any closer to peace, or the end of American involvement in ‘forever wars.’ In less than a week’s time, the President managed to allow the Turks to displace tens of thousands of people in Syria, further destabilizing the region, while promising to deploy an additional two thousand troops to Saudi Arabia, in a misguided effort to deter Iran, without any strategy to stop the cycle of military escalation and begin work on a negotiated settlement.
“For months, I have been deeply concerned about the administration’s so-called maximum pressure campaign against Iran and its lack of a coherent strategy. I am increasingly skeptical with each new deployment of military assets and personnel to the region.
“I am still waiting for the Administration’s national security team to clearly articulate their broader strategy in the region, and how their recent deployment decisions fit into this strategy. Until then, I will remain concerned that our current trajectory will only lead to escalation.”