Lindsey Graham Reverses Gears On Syria, Now Says He's 'Increasingly Optimistic'
October 21, 2019

So much for Trump lickspittle Sen. Lindsey Graham promising to be "Trump's worst nightmare" on Syria.

Graham was still criticizing Trump as recently as this Saturday evening on Jeanine Pirro's show on Fox, but apparently one phone call with Trump and now he's all-in:

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., who has been a vocal critic of President Trump’s decision to move U.S. troops out of Syria, said on Sunday that he is now “increasingly optimistic that we can have some historic solutions” there.Speaking on “Sunday Morning Futures” with Maria Bartiromo, Graham, the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said he spoke with Trump on Saturday night about the objectives in Syria and was encouraged by their discussion over the fight against Islamic State terrorists.

“I am increasingly optimistic that we can have some historic solutions in Syria that have eluded us for years if we play our cards right,” Graham told Bartiromo on Sunday.

He went on to explain what the president told him over the weekend and outlined the objectives:

“To make sure we have a demilitarized zone between Turkey and the Kurds,” Graham said. “The Kurds were the allies who helped us defeat ISIS. They lost 10,000 soldiers, we’ve lost eight in four years, God bless the eight, but it was the Kurds who did most of the fighting.”

“Protect our NATO ally Turkey from elements of the Kurds that they consider to be terrorists. A demilitarized zone occupied by international forces, no Americans, but we provide airpower,” he continued.

Bartiromo asked Graham about the 180, but his response left us with more questions than it did to answers:

“I still believe that if we abandon the Kurds, nobody helps you in the future,” Graham said in response. “They’ve lost 10,000 fighters to destroy the caliphate, but there are 15 or 20,000 ISIS fighters roaming around in Syria and Iraq. A small contingent of Americans providing air power and capability will keep ISIS at bay and keep the jails locked up and the ISIS fighters won’t break out.”

He went on to say, “What I heard from the president was... 'play the ball as you lie,' [which] is a concept in golf. After Erdoğan’s invasion, things have gotten scrambled in Syria, but I see a way forward now that really, quite frankly, is historic.”

Graham continued, “Historic security for Turkey, historic security for the Kurds, a plan to keep ISIS down and out forever, and the chance to keep the oil fields in the hands of our allies, not enemies, would be a hell of an outcome, and I think that’s now possible.”

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