The president is again using a toddler's playbook—ignore, deflect, shift blame—to deal with subpoenas from the impeachment inquiry and Republican criticism over the withdrawal of U.S. troops from northeast Syria.
President Donald Trump has betrayed America's allies, damaged Turkish-American relations and potentially created the conditions for a return of ISIS.
President Donald Trump withdrew U.S. forces from Kurdish-held areas of Syria this week, leaving them open to a new Turkish offensive.
"This is heart-rending for anybody who has shed blood, who has deployed forward," former NATO Supreme Allied Commander James Stavridis said.
The International Rescue Committee has also warned that as many as 300,000 people could be displaced by Turkey's military offensive.
John McLaughlin called Trump's decision a "disaster" and illustrative of his "reckless instincts" regarding foreign policy.
The tweet falsely claiming the banner was unfurled at Trump Tower, Las Vegas accumulated 96,900 likes and 2.4 million views in less than a day.
Karwan Jamal Tahir, the high representative of the Kurdish Regional Government in London, told Newsweek he fears a fresh humanitarian crisis in Syria.
Arizona Rep. Ruben Gallego said the decision to withdraw U.S. troops from the Kurdish-controlled region of Syria was a "tragedy across a huge scale."
"We learnt that President Trump has ordered the U.S. military not to help," Fox News National Security Correspondent Jennifer Griffin said.
"The world will never forgive us. Nor should they. #KurdsBetrayedByTrump," Human Rights Campaign's Charlotte Clymer tweeted.
The U.S. appears to have set itself and its Kurdish allies up for disaster by neglecting to help them negotiate a diplomatic solution with Turkey as well as the Syrian government.
The president "recognized that sending American troops to Syria is not in the best national security interest of the United States," Andrew Napolitano said.
As Turkey launches offensive operations into northeastern Syria against once American-backed Syrian militias, the danger facing U.S. forces in the region have heightened amid reports that U.S. operations against the Islamic State militant group in Syria have halted.
"Remember that earlier this year, Trump VETOED Congress' attempt to end US involvement in the Yemen War," the Democratic congresswoman tweeted.
Some 2,500 ISIS foreign fighters remain in Kurdish prisons in northeastern Syria, but the Turkish operation may threaten the security of such facilities.
Despite loud protests about American betrayal, core U.S. national security interests in war-ravaged Syria were always narrow and specific: destroy the Islamic State's physical caliphate.
Russia and Iran have both said that the only solution for Turkey's border worries were negotiations between Kurds and the Syrian government in Damascus.
Turkey wants to clear Kurdish armed forces away from its southern border in "Operation Peace Spring."
Allowing Turkey to act against the Kurdish-led SDF in northeastern Syria "will severely damage American credibility," retired General Joseph Votel said.
"Unfortunately, Turkey has chosen to act unilaterally. As a result we have moved the U.S. forces in northern Syria out of the path of potential Turkish incursion to ensure their safety," the Pentagon said.
"The fight against Daesh [ISIS] is not over and continues alongside the [Kurdish-led] Syrian Democratic Forces," Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said.
A potential U.S. withdrawal from northern Syria could signal new divisions between Russia, Iran and Turkey, which have so far worked together in trilateral peace talks.
"We are voluntarily abdicating our role and it's the Russians, Iranians and others who are benefitting," Richard Haass warned.
The former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations said the decision was "appalling" because Kurds had been "promised our partnership."
The president told reporters Monday that an unnamed "top general" lamented the state of U.S. military supplies when he took office.
"I am absolutely appalled that the United States is going to betray those Democratic forces in northern Syria," Pat Robertson said on "The 700 Club."
"The president has shown on a range of foreign policy efforts that he thinks of these things primarily in terms of optics and political calculus back home," Hoffman said. "The difference in this case is the Turks really are going to go in."
"By abandoning the Kurds we have sent the most dangerous signal possible – America is an unreliable ally," the Republican senator from South Carolina argued.
"We must always have the backs of our allies, if we expect them to have our back," Nikki Haley tweeted a minute after Hillary Clinton.