Trump compared Turkey attacking the Kurds to 'two kids in a lot': 'You have to let them fight, and then you pull them apart'

Donald Trump rally DallasU.S. President Donald Trump mocks U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) as he rallies with supporters in Dallas, Texas, U.S. October 17, 2019.Jonathan Ernst/Reuters
  • President Donald Trump held a rally in Dallas, Texas, the first since the House of Representatives voted in favor of a resolution condemning his decision to pull US troops from northern Syria, leaving the Kurds to fend for themselves against Turkey.
  • Trump addressed the conflict in the Middle East during the rally, saying that it was good to allow Turkey to invade Kurdish forces without US troops to back them. He compared Turkey attacking the Kurds to "two kids in a lot," saying that "you have to let them fight, and then you pull them apart."
  • Shortly after US troops withdrew, Turkish forces launched a military assault into northeastern Syria.
  • The UK-based organization, Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), said that 300,000 people are displaced and 71 civilians killed. The Kurdish authorities in the region, say that the death toll is 218 civilians, including 21 children, The Independent reported.
  • Trump's decision to pull US forces was in part fueled by his desire to "bring our soldiers back home," the president has said. However, the president deployed 1,800 more soldiers to Saudi Arabia, and he redeployed the troops from Syria to other parts of the region.
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President Donald Trump compared Turkey attacking the Kurds to "two kids in a lot," saying that "you have to let them fight, and then you pull them apart."

The president hosted a rally in Dallas, Texas, the first since the House of Representatives voted in favor of a resolution condemning his decision to pull US troops from northeastern Syria, leaving the Syrian Kurds to fend for themselves against Turkey.

The Kurds are a stateless group that mainly live in Turkey, Syria, Iraq, Iran, Europe, and North America. The majority-Kurdish Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) were US allies in the fight against the Islamic State. They control much of northeastern Syria. Turkey not only wants to use part of Syria to relocate Syrian refugees, who fled to Turkey during the civil war, but it also does not trust the SDF. Turkey sees the SDF as allies of Turkish Kurds, specifically the Kurdish Workers' Party (PKK) that has had long-standing conflict with Turkey and is labeled a terrorist group by both Turkey and the US. 

Following a phone call between Trump and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Trump decided to pull roughly 1,000 US troops from Syria, paving the way for a Turkish incursion.

Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met with Erdoğan and negotiated a so-called cease-fire with the country. Turkish officials were quick to dispute the claim, saying it was not a cease-fire, rather a pause in "operation," allowing the Kurds, who Turkey view as terrorists, retreat from the border.

Trump addressed the conflict in the Middle East during the Thursday rally, saying that it was good to let the Turks attack the Kurds.

"Sometimes you have to let them fight, like two kids in a lot," Trump said during the rally. "You have to let them fight, and then you pull them apart."

Read more: Trump spent his first rally since the impeachment inquiry mocking Biden for 'kissing Barack Obama's a--' and launching into a tirade against Somali refugees

Shortly after withdrawing US troops, Turkish forces invaded Syria. The UK-based organization, Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), said that 300,000 people were displaced and 71 civilians killed. The Kurdish authorities in the region, say that the death toll on Thursday was 218 civilians, including 21 children, The Independent reported.

"They fought for a few days, and it was pretty vicious. I mean, it was nasty," Trump said. "Now all of a sudden they're fighting, and it's not fun having bullets go all over the place."

"We went there, and we said we want to pause, and the Kurds have been terrific, they're going to move back a little bit," he continued. "We're going to keep ISIS all nice and locked up."

The Kurds have also been in charge of detaining thousands of Islamic State fighters and their families, and experts and officials worry that they could escape, leading to a resurgence of the Islamic State.

Trump's decision to pull US forces was fueled by his desire to "bring our soldiers back home," he has claimed. However, the president deployed 1,800 more soldiers to Saudi Arabia, and he redeployed the troops from Syria to other parts of the region, CNN's Daniel Dale pointed out.

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