On Monday, retired Gen. Mark Hertling laid into President Donald Trump on CNN for his sudden order to pull the military out of Syria and transfer U.S. responsibilities to Turkey.
“This is devastating across the board in so many ways,” said Hertling. “It’s devastating for anyone who has an alliance with us in the past and looks to work for us in the future. It’s devastating for the military planners that are on the ground and the soldiers working with the Kurdish allies. It gives the NATO allies the opportunity to do some things that will significantly affect not only the Middle East but also the European footprint. I think it will certainly provide an impetus for the war against ISIS to be renewed in a much bigger way than it already was being renewed. So there are so many things you could talk about that are complicated by this action, this spur of the moment action, if you will, by the White House. It’s just incredibly jaw-dropping from my perspective.
Hertling warned that the decision would have horrible consequences for human rights and national security.
“There are 70,000 ISIS prisoners in one of the camps not in the zone of what we anticipate to be the Turkish operation,” said Hertling. “So those are going to be released and they are not just prisoners that we would think of them in Orange jumpsuits. All men being in jail. These are families. It’s a family concentration camp of those who have come from Iraq and Syria to fight as part of the caliphate. So it is a much more dangerous situation. That’s why I say it will lend to a greater surge within the ISIS opportunities to continue to attack. This is devastatingly bad.
Hertling also warned that this decision will be a boon to Russia and Iran.
“Russia could certainly fill the void,” said Hertling. “Not only in contributing to the Turkish operations, but also the Kurds could go and there’s been indicators that they’ve gone to them in the past and saying that we need help in defending ourselves. From a strategic perspective, that puts America at an even more extreme long-term disadvantage. Russia is stepping in when we step out. So we are made to look like the fools. Our allies think we’re idiots because we have stepped out … every time America steps out of anything in the Middle East, Russia steps in. Iran is also benefitting from this in a great way, because they will continue to man the counter-ISIS approaches.”
‘I don’t even know where to start’: CNN analyst tears into Trump’s plan to give re-nomination speech at White House
On CNN Wednesday, CNN analyst Dana Bash slammed President Donald Trump's new plan to give the GOP re-nomination speech at the White House.
"I mean, I don't even know where to start," said Bash. "There is a law called the Hatch Act, where it says that you're not supposed to politic from government grounds. The president is exempt from that, so it may be legal grounds for him to stand on, relatively firmly, to do this at the White House. There are questions about the aides that are working for him to do it. But let's just talk about whether it's appropriate."
‘He still doesn’t get it’: White House source tells CNN’s Acosta that Trump refuses to take the pandemic seriously
CNN's Jim Acosta on Wednesday reported that President Donald Trump this week attended a meeting with his own White House Coronavirus Task Force -- and it quickly became clear that the president is still not taking the pandemic seriously even after the deaths of 156,000 Americans.
“He still doesn’t get it,” the source told Acosta. “He does not get it.”
Acosta's source says that during the meeting on Tuesday, Trump frequently tried to change the subject away from the coronavirus pandemic, despite the fact that the entire purpose of the meeting was to discuss the coronavirus pandemic.
‘Have you ever heard someone whine as much as this man?’ CNN’s Anderson Cooper tears into Trump’s COVID excuses
On CNN Tuesday, anchor Anderson Cooper slammed President Donald Trump after his Axios interview in which he said of coronavirus deaths, "It is what it is."
"For a man who seems to have strength and power, have you heard someone as allegedly powerful and strong as he claims to be — have you ever heard somebody whine as much as this man?" said Cooper. "'It is what it is.' Let me play the last portion of that first exchange again, because he says something telling."
"It is what it is," said Trump in the clip. "But that doesn't mean we are not doing everything that we can. It's under control, as much as you can control it."