WASHINGTON, D.C.—The Heritage Foundation’s James Carafano issued the following statement about the Trump administration’s policies on Syria and Afghanistan. Carafano is the vice president of the Davis Institute for National Security and Foreign Policy and the E.W. Richardson fellow at Heritage.
“The recent actions on Syria, and the reported decision on Afghanistan, are disappointing. In both cases, the administration is failing to adequately explain U.S. policies, how they serve America’s interests, and how they support U.S. regional and national security strategies.
“An abrupt pullout of U.S. forces in Syria and Afghanistan without adequate preparation could lead to a return of ISIS and the Taliban to power, thus overturning all the hard-won gains made by U.S. and allied forces.
“In the case of Syria, while a permanent American footprint in the country is neither practical nor desirable, the administration must explain its actions, demonstrate its plan is suitable and feasible, and inform Americans how it protects our interests and serves the larger regional strategy.
“In the case of Afghanistan, U.S. interests include preventing the country from yet again becoming a sanctuary for global terrorism and a source of instability in the region that threatens America’s strategic partners. Announcing force reductions without explaining to Americans how the administration plans to follow through on the excellent national security strategy the president laid out to the American people last year represents a significant failure in leadership.”