On Sunday, John Allen a retired four-star Marine general bluntly and publicly criticized Donald Trump over the Turkish military offensive in northern Syria.
“There is blood on Trump’s hands for abandoning our Kurdish allies,” Fen Allen stated.
Gen. John Allen, who is the former commander of American forces in Afghanistan and former special presidential envoy for the Global Coalition to Counter ISIS under the Obama administration, spoke openly with CNN about the crisis that was unfolding in Syria. He stated that the crisis was “completely foreseeable” and the “US greenlighted it.”
“There was no chance (Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan) Erdogan would keep his promise, and full-blown ethnic cleansing is underway by Turkish supported militias,” Allen said. “This is what happens when Trump follows his instincts and because of his alignment with autocrats.”
“I said there would be blood, but could not have imagined this outcome,” Allen added.
Last week Turkey launched a military offensive into northeastern Syria shortly after Trump abruptly ordered a contingent of US troops to be pulled back from the border area.
Kurdish officials, as well as Republican and Democratic lawmakers, have all argued that Trump’s withdrawal of troops helped provide Turkey the green light to launch its attack.
Some senior members of the Trump administration have attempted to claim that Turkey would have invaded regardless of whether US troops had remained or not.
On Sunday, Allen stated that Trump’s approval of $50 million in aid to Syria is a “hollow” gesture.
“Who’s going to administer it and for whom? Hundreds of thousands are fleeing and the relief agencies are on the move,” he added.
On Friday, Trump signed an executive order giving the Treasury Department “very significant new sanctions authorities” against Turkey over its actions in Syria. However, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin has stated that the US has no immediate plans to use the sanctions.
On Friday, a statement from the Treasury said that Trump’s threat of sanctions was meant to dissuade Turkey from actions that included “the indiscriminate targeting of civilians, targeting of civilian infrastructure, targeting of ethnic or religious minorities.”
On Sunday both Trump and Mnuchin on Sunday again issued threats about sanctioning the country.