The Islamic State wants to regain land in Syria and could succeed in six to 12 months with no military pressure, warns a draft Pentagon report set to be released early next week, according to NBC News.
The NBC article comes hours after the majority of Senate Republicans joined Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., in voting to declare ISIS’s operations a serious threat to America, a rebuke to President Donald Trump’s plan to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria and Afghanistan.
Trump in December declared victory over ISIS after announcing the troop withdrawal.
The president’s declaration has been disputed by the country’s top intelligence leaders, who earlier this week said the terror group had thousands of fighters and was still plotting attacks in Syria.
The Pentagon finding, drafted by the Defense Department Office of Inspector General, says ISIS is “intent on reconstituting a physical caliphate and that with ungoverned spaces in Syria and no military pressure, the terror group could retake land in a matter of months,” according to officials who spoke with NBC.
Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., last month called the pullout “catastrophic,” while Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., deemed it a “disaster in the making.”
The Trump administration has ordered the withdrawal of 2,000 American troops by spring 2019.
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