Donald Trump's take on the Turkish encroachment in Syria has apparently been unstable: the U.S. president effectively cleared the way for the operation by withdrawing United States troops from the area, but later threatened to impose sanctions against Turkey as the offensive went on.
Romney also speculated that Trump gave Turkey advance notice of the withdrawal of USA troops, but did not afford the same for our Kurdish allies.
Erdogan launched "Peace Spring" on October 9, souring Ankara's relations with Washington, which saw Kurds as allies in a fight against Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS).
He said both the Turkish military and its Syrian allies were involved in the fighting with the Kurdish-dominated Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).
Romney says removing USA troops who protected the Kurds "violates one of our most sacred duties". It strikes at American honor.
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"The cease-fire does not change the fact that America has abandoned an ally, adding insult to dishonor", Romney said in a scathing floor speech, shortly after Vice President Mike Pence announced that Turkey had agreed to pause its offensive against the Syrian Kurds for five days.
In fact, he suggested the Kurdish group might be a greater terror threat than IS, and he welcomed the efforts of Russian Federation and the Syrian government to fill the void left after he ordered the removal of almost all USA troops from Syria.
On Thursday, Erdogan and U.S. Vice President Mike Pence agreed to the 120-hour pause in order to allow the withdrawal of YPG/PKK terrorists from the planned safe zone.
Trump's withdrawal of USA troops has been widely condemned, including by Republican officials not directly associated with his administration.
The United States has demanded a ceasefire in Turkey's more than week-old operation in northern Syria.
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The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights war monitor said more than 300,000 civilians had been displaced within Syria since the start of the assault, calling it one of the largest upheavals since Syria's civil war began in 2011.
"What we have done to the Kurds will stand as a bloodstain in the annals of American history", he said.
Trump has denied that his action provided a "green light" for Turkey to move against the longtime U.S. battlefield partners or that he was opening the way for a revival of the Islamic State group and raising worldwide doubts about USA faithfulness to its allies. "It is a matter of commitment", Romney said.
Trump said Wednesday that Turkey's incursion into northern Syria "has nothing to do with us" and added that former USA allies - the Kurds - are "not angels". At a time when we're applying maximum pressure on Iran by giving them a stronger hand in Syria, we've actually weakened that pressure.
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The Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) has waged an insurgency inside Turkey, and Ankara regards the YPG as an extension of the PKK. Erdogan launched a military operation, now in its second week, against Kurdish fighters in northeast Syria.