President Donald Trump on Wednesday described Syria as "sand and death" when asked about his plan to withdraw American troops from the civil war-ravaged country.
"We're getting out of Syria. Look we don't want Syria," Trump told reporters during a Cabinet meeting. "Obama gave up Syria years ago when he didn't violate the red line," Trump said, referring to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's use of chemical weapons against Syrian civilians in April 2017.
In response, Trump ordered a strike of 59 Tomahawk missiles on the Shayrat air base in Syria.
"I did when I shot 59 missiles in, but that was a long time later," Trump said. "President Obama decided not to violate his statement, never cross the red line, and then they did and he didn't do anything about it."
Trump said Obama made a threat and then "did nothing" and that Syria had been "lost long ago."
"We’re talking about sand and death, that’s what we’re talking about. We’re not talking about vast wealth. We’re talking about sand and death."
When asked about withdrawing troops from Syria, Trump called the country "sand and death," adding "we're not talkin… https://t.co/KDxeGUXLqs— Newsweek (@Newsweek)1546463700.0
Does Trump realize there are millions of people who live in Syria?
@Newsweek And people. There are human beings in Syria. Each time he opens his mouth he either lies or reveals his l… https://t.co/QBXt7oY74Z— KC Swede (@KC Swede)1546465175.0
@Newsweek @EliotHiggins It’s only poor people, no loot to be gained...— bob evans (@bob evans)1546464986.0
@Newsweek What fresh Hell is this?— ladydi80 (@ladydi80)1546463951.0
This is how pirates talk - and his advisors let him get away with it.
@RadioFreeTom - Sold out the Kurds and put them at risk on live TV - Stoked Iran tension - Dismissed Syria as "sa… https://t.co/mHpcEqwA1Z— Henry (@Henry)1546457114.0
@Newsweek Trump is admitting how US go to war, no US president ever admitted this brfore. We are not so innocent as he once said.— Omar (@Omar)1546465416.0
@Newsweek He's a freaking war plunderer.— AuntSandy🏳️🌈⚢🚲🌊 (@AuntSandy🏳️🌈⚢🚲🌊)1546464886.0
@Newsweek I don’t judge @potus for this nonsense as he has clearly lost his mind. I judge everyone in the room who… https://t.co/EBqKsSsVFH— Tita101 (@Tita101)1546464039.0
Trump's proud ignorance of history and culture is dangerous.
And he has the nuclear codes.
Donald Trump calls Syria (home of oldest inhabited city in World) a land of “Sand and Death.” “We are not talking… https://t.co/LZLTPq4naC— Joyce Karam (@Joyce Karam)1546458942.0
Trump adds #sandanddeath to his foolish worldview. Syria has Med. beaches, castles & longest continuously inhabited… https://t.co/ULe3EGqWDm— Mark E. Saadine (@Mark E. Saadine)1546480579.0
18.28 million human beings live in Syria "We’re talking about sand and death, that’s what we’re talking about, sand… https://t.co/8HU6ytiTGl— Cheryl Juech (@Cheryl Juech)1546473402.0
@Ozkok_ Holy moly. I never thought I'd live in a time where the leader of my country would reduce a people to "sand… https://t.co/YPhXQRSOLU— Aaron Cort (@Aaron Cort)1546466574.0
@Ozkok_ Omfg - sand and death - no wealth......wtf? What about humans !!! He really has no connection to reality a… https://t.co/K7XUfbNPPZ— Petadavies (@Petadavies)1546481078.0
During the same Cabinet meeting, Trump raised eyebrows when he said Iran can do whatever it wants in Syria as the United States formulates its exit plan.
“Iran is pulling people out of Syria," Trump said, "but they can frankly do whatever they want there."
Trump abruptly announced last month that he would be bringing American troops home from Syria, but has not set a specific timeframe for doing so.