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Trump Wants Authority to Build New Bases in Iraq, Syria

This U.S. base in northern Iraq resembles many other U.S. facilities scattered throughout the Middle East, North Africa, and Central Asia. PHOTO: The Daily Signal

White House Complains Legal Restrictions Are Hampering ‘Temporary’ Sites

By Jason Ditz | 14 July 2017

ANTIWAR — The White House has issued a statement this week calling on Congress to grant President Trump unilateral legal authority to open new military bases in both Iraq and Syria, as well as to renovate existing facilities. Officials say the bases would be purely temporary in nature.

What “temporary” actually means however is unclear, particularly in Iraq where the Pentagon has been very public about the idea that they intend to keep US ground troops in Iraq more or less forever. Those bases, then, are going to be open-ended facilities for an open-ended mission.

The White House says that the current lack of unilateral authority is limiting “maneuverability” as they continue their military buildup in the region, Though the statement was initially aimed at getting the authority included in the NDAA, it does not appear that the House version made any such revisions.

The establishment of bases, particularly in Syria, could be risky, since the US doesn’t have any permission from the Syrian government to be there in the first place, and the appearance of the Pentagon laying down roots, however temporary they claim them to do,  could be very provocative to Syria, and its allies like Russia. […]

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