In his new book, former Defense Secretary Mark Esper describes former President Donald Trump's repeated threats to withdraw U.S. troops from South Korea, a key U.S. ally in Asia.
According to The Washington Post, Esper writes that Trump said that the South Koreans were “horrible to deal with” and were “ripping us off."
“They sell us Samsung TVs and we protect them. It makes no sense,” Esper quoted Trump as saying.
"Trump brought up the complete withdrawal of U.S. forces from South Korea several times during Esper’s 15-month stint as defense secretary, Esper told me in an interview," the Post reports. "The consequences of such a move, Esper argued to Trump, would be disastrous, including losing the ability to deter North Korea. The move would also surely be welcomed by China, which has long sought to push the U.S. military out of Asia."
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According to Esper, former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo got Trump to back off his threats to withdraw troops from South Korea by telling him to make it a priority in his second term.
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