Rally to support the Kurds

13 Oct 2019

In front of Art Museum
We gathered in a semi-circle in front of the Philadephia Art Museam to protest the abrupt withdrawal of US troops from Syria.

Back this last December, President Trump tried to declare victory over ISIS and to withdraw US troops from Syria. Shortly after that, Defense Secretary James Mattis and US Envoy for the War Against the Islamic State Brett McGurk, resigned. On October 7th, the President did the same thing and there was no opposition within the Executive branch of the government to oppose him. A few days later, acting Secretary of Defense Mark Esper was dispatched to to Fox News to explain to newserson Chirs Wallace why America's loyal allies of the past five years were now being abandoned. Esper explsined:

For his part, Esper insisted that Turkey intended to invade the Kurds in Syria "regardless of what we did."
"There is no way we could have stopped 15,000 Turks," Esper said.

"You say there's nothing we could do," Wallace fired back. "Do you really believe that Erdoğan and the Turks were going to just come through the border, perhaps create a conflict with the United States if we had stood firm?"

Wallace is correct. The explanation that the Turks would have attacked US troops is utterly unbelievable.

Hmm, never heard the term "Rojava" before.

So, how about the President's personal finances? Could they have played a role in his abrupt decision? The President has admitted that the Trump Towers in Istanbul constitute a serious conflict of interest. How much money does Trump make from the Towers? We don't know as he refuses to make his income tax returns available. More to the point, what is the importance of Turkey in his whole portfolio? Again, having all of his tax returns would make that clear.
Trump's tweet about the situation “As I have stated strongly before, and just to reiterate, if Turkey does anything that I, in my great and unmatched wisdom, consider to be off limits, I will totally destroy and obliterate the Economy of Turkey … ” shows us that the President apparently thinks he's some sort of emperor.

The President has just given up on US troops in Syria entirely and has ordered them all to withdraw.

As if on cue, on Sunday, hundreds of families and supporters of the Islamic State escaped from a detention center in Ain Issa, in northeastern Syria. The Kurds reported that the black isis flag was soon erected nearby. “Five years of work—undone,” a U.S. official lamented to me, on Sunday. Trump’s order to withdraw also prevented U.S. forces from being able to transfer about sixty “high-value” isis prisoners from detention centers in the area controlled by the S.D.F., the Times reported.

Hervin Khalaf, Secretary General of the Future Syria Party was dragged out of her car, raped, tortured and stoned to death. A State Department spokesman indicated that the Department was troubled by this, but announced no plans to push back against this sort of atrocity.

Oh, and roughly 50 US nuclear weapons are kept in Turkey!

They didn't move them, the Times reports. "Those weapons, one senior official said, were now essentially Erdogan's hostages."


The President appears to be very confused as to what the actual situation on the grond in Syria is:

Trump boasted to reporters yesterday afternoon, “Look, we have no soldiers in Syria. We’ve won…. We have no soldiers.” He echoed the rhetoric at a campaign rally in Minneapolis last night, telling supporters he decided to bring Americans troops “back home.”

There are still about 1k US troops in Syria.

Republican Senator Marco Rubio puts out a tweet:

As Turkish backed fighters approach a Kurdish held city in #Syria:
-700 #ISIS supporters escaped
-Erdogans forces are filming themselves beheading Kurds
- U.S. troops are at serious risk of being cut off & of coming under attack by enemy fighters.

All of which is true and horrifying, But what does Rubio intend to DO about it?!?!?! If Republican Senators intenend to pledge to vote to remove the President from office after the House impeaches him, that would be significant!

Speaker implores US citizens to contact their Senators and Representatives to help the Kurds!

To a man with only a hammer, every problem tends to look like a nail. - folk wisdom

President Trump tends to apply either sanctions or tariffs and when both of those fail, he's pretty much out of ideas. The President is applying a 50% tariff hike on to Turkish steel. Essentially, he's got some really modest policies and has applied them far too late to do any good. So much for his “totally destroy and obliterate the Economy of Turkey” boast.