WP's David Ignatius Back From Syria: Kurdish Fighters Cheer At Mention Of President Trump's Name

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On Monday's edition of 'Morning Joe' on MSNBC, Washington Post columnist David Ignatius discussed what he learned on his trip to Syria - particularly the great successes U.S.-backed forces are having lately against the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria.

He recounts that one of the most successful attacks on Raqqa --the 'capital city' of the self-declared caliphate-- was due to President Trump's decision to delegate fighting authority out of the White House to commanders in the field. Ignatius said that under President Obama, there would have been weeks of West Wing meetings to discuss the best way to conduct the attack.

"One in particular, a surprise landing by helicopter, I was told by the top US commanders, would not have taken place if it hadn’t been for President Trump’s decision to delegate military authorities down to the level of command," he reported. "These Kurds who’d never seen an airplane or helicopter [were] helicoptered across a lake for a surprise attack, that is probably the most daring and decisive of the war."

"Every time the name 'President Trump' was mentioned, there were cheers from the audience," he reported.

“One Syrian Kurdish commander used a vulgar term, in Spanish it would be cojones, to describe what President Trump has got, and why they like him," Ignatius said.

Transcript via MSNBC:

DAVID IGNATIUS: I'm going to say something that in some ways is sympathetic to Trump. As I traveled across Syria, meeting with Syrian fighters who were trying to take down the regime of Bashar al Assad, every time the name “President Trump” was mentioned, there were cheers from the audience. One Syrian Kurdish commander used a vulgar term, in Spanish it would be cojones, to describe what President Trump has got and why they like him.

More seriously, the big attacks that have taken place around Raqqa, one in particular, a surprise landing by helicopter, I was told by the top US commanders, would not have taken place if it hadn’t been for President Trump’s decision to delegate military authorities down to the level of command. I mean, under Obama that would have taken a couple weeks of White House meetings and then they still wouldn’t have made up their mind.

In this case there was not one meeting. They just said, General Townsend, the commander in Baghdad, you decide. And three days later, these Kurds who’d never seen an airplane or helicopter had been helicoptered across a lake for a surprise attack that is probably the most daring and decisive of the war. So, do need to put this in perspective. Yes, there are a lot of people around the world who are appalled, but there are some people who say this image of strength that he’s projecting is something that they like.

(h/t -- Legal Insurrection)

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