GOP Senator Bob Corker ‘Saddened’ and ‘Devastated’ By Syria Withdrawal: ‘This One Matters’

On CNN’s State of the Union, Jake Tapper spoke at length with Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN), including on the topics of Syria and the resignation of Gen. James Mattis as Defense Secretary. Corker said both things “sadden” him, as do the likely deaths among U.S. allies in the region as a result of troop departure.

“In his resignation letter, Mattis made it very clear he disagrees with the president, when it comes to Mattis having respect for allies and alliances, that he thinks that China and Russia are bad actors,” said Tapper. “What was your reaction to it all?”

“Look, I’m saddened. We’ve been working with allies for some sixty coalition groups that are working with us,” said Corker. “The SDF, which is made up of Kurds and Arabs, have been doing the fighting for us. We’ve been helping them do what they’re doing, but they’re the ones doing the fighting.”

That characterization is in direct contradiction of the remarks by Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) on the same show Sunday, who asked why these groups can’t fight or “do anything” for themselves.

Corker said that ISIS is isolated and at its end but we’re leaving before we are through. “We’re just a few month away from finishing something that we started, where we would annihilate a large number of ISIS members and we stopped, he said. “I’m just saddened for our country.”

“I’m saddened for the broken relationships with countries that have been with us,” he continued. “I’m saddened for the many Kurds and others that likely will be killed and slaughtered by either the Syrians or the Turks. I’m saddened for our country in being so unreliable.”

“I’m devastated by this,” said Corker. “And I think that what Mattis did was very important for our country, because for some of these machinations we see out of 1600 Pennsylvania, people realize they don’t really matter. This one matters. This one matters to our country. It matters to our foreign interest. This matters to our citizens.”

Watch the clip above, courtesy of CNN.
[Featured image via screengrab]

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