The general leading America's fight against ISIS makes it clear that Trump has been lying about victory.
The top U.S. commander leading the fight against ISIS has made it clear that Trump’s premature declaration of victory over the terrorist force is a lie.
Gen. Joseph Votel has four stars and is the commander of U.S. Central Command, who is responsible for the fight against ISIS. In comments to reporters, Votel agreed with the assessment from U.S. intelligence that there are “tens of thousands” of ISIS fighters operating right now in Syria and Iraq.
“They are dispersed and disaggregated, but there is leadership, there are fighters there, there are facilitators there,” Votel said.
The military commander’s blunt assessment runs completely counter to the happy talk being offered by Trump.
“It should be formally announced sometime probably next week that we will have 100 percent of the caliphate,” Trump recently claimed. He also said ISIS has been “decimated.”
Eyeing his re-election campaign and aware that he has been unpopular since he took over the presidency, Trump has repeatedly tried to assert that forces like ISIS have been defeated under his leadership.
Mike Pence has also been part of the White House disinformation campaign on ISIS, claiming that ISIS has been “defeated.” He made his proclamation on the same day forces aligned with ISIS claimed responsibility for an attack that killed 4 U.S. troops.
But in the annual Worldwide Threat Assessment released in January, American intelligence officials said, “ISIS still commands thousands of fighters in Iraq and Syria, and it maintains eight branches, more than a dozen networks, and thousands of dispersed supporters around the world, despite significant leadership and territorial losses.”
The same U.S. intelligence agencies have repeatedly been attacked by Trump after they indicated Russia influenced the 2016 election on his behalf.
A draft report from the Pentagon has indicated that ISIS could reclaim the territory they have lost within a few months without military pressure.
ISIS “is transforming into an asymmetrical warfare force. And this, of course, is a threat,” German Chancellor Angela Merkel recently said. Merkel has a far better track record of truthful public statements than Trump, who is a serial liar.
ISIS continues to be a threat to the free world, including America and its allies. Trump desperately wants to declare that the mission has been accomplished even when thousands of lives are at stake. But generals, intelligence agencies, and even other world leaders have made it clear: Trump is lying.
Published with permission of The American Independent.