During a Sunday interview with CBS, President Trump insisted that the US
has an “incredible base” in Iraq after years of wars, and “might as well keep it.” He suggested there troops would be staying more or less forever.
His justification for this, beyond “might as well,” was that it’s right next to Iran. Trump claimed Iran is the cause of “every single” major difficulty in the Middle East, and keeping US troops in Iraq would allow them to “watch” Iran.
“We’re going to keep watching and if there’s trouble, if somebody is looking to do nuclear weapons or other things, we’re going to know it before they do,” Trump insisted. It’s not clear how that would work, particularly with respect to knowing “before they do.”
Trump went on to say he has no intention to use US troops in Iraq to strike Iran, and that “all I want to do is be able to watch.” The US has, of course, threatened to attack Iran several times, but Iraq has ruled out letting the US use their territory to do so.
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