By Karen DeYoung, Shane Harris ·(c) 2018, The Washington Post Apr 05, 2018
WASHINGTON - President Donald Trump has instructed military leaders to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria as soon as possible and told them he wants Arab allies to take over and pay for stabilizing and reconstructing areas liberated from the Islamic State, according to senior U.S. officials.
In a meeting with top national security aides Tuesday, Trump backtracked on his public insistence that the troop exit was imminent, now that the militants were “close to 100 percent” defeated. Pressed by the president to tell him how much more time they needed to finish the job, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Joseph Dunford Jr. said it would probably be months, not years, officials said.
In a meeting with top national security aides Tuesday, Trump backtracked on his public insistence that the troop exit was imminent
Trump agreed that the military, as they continued fighting against remaining militant pockets, could train local security forces.