Kathleen Franze | Abandoning Our Allies

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Being 75, I have voted Democratic in every presidential election, never worrying whether the new president (GOP or Democrat) would take a wrecking ball to our democracy. When Donald Trump was elected, I belatedly realized how foolish I have been and how fragile our country is when confronted by an internal despot.

Democracy is a consensus of all voices wanting to be heard. Resolutions are made by listening to the public, by consulting experts both inside and outside of government, by the military, by the courts and the Constitution. Trump consults no one but himself and frequently flaunts that he is smarter than anyone.

Trump’s single, hasty decision of giving (Turkish President Recep Tayyip) Erdogan the green light to massacre our Kurdish allies in Syria was abominable. The annihilation of the Kurds on a religious basis is nothing less than ethnic cleansing on a massive scale and it will be Trump’s legacy. The Kurdish men and women fought this hands-on battle, building by building, resulting in thousands of Kurd casualties. The American troops provided tactical training and strategy, but were not normally in actual combat.

Not only is this a betrayal of our Kurdish allies, but also a terrible strategy. Should we ever need to put together a coalition of countries to defend a position, who will want to join us when we abandon our allies and treat our friends as enemies? Compounding the problem, imprisoned ISIS forces have escaped in the chaos and are free to practice worldwide terrorism.

In closing, I can only imagine how demoralized the U.S. troops must feel in being forced by the president to withdraw from Syria, condemning their Kurd comrades to near-certain death. Our troops are not wired to abandon allies in the field. We all know the sacrifices of servicemen, who have rescued the wounded, the missing, and the captured, and are now helpless to provide assistance.

Kathleen Franze

Palmdale

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