Democratic senator: Pompeo 'lives in a parallel alternate universe' on Syria

Democratic senator: Pompeo 'lives in a parallel alternate universe' on Syria
© Aaron Schwartz

Sen. Bob MenendezRobert (Bob) MenendezLobbying world This week: Congress starts summer sprint The Innovation and Competition Act is progressive policy MORE (D-N.J.), the top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, blasted Secretary of State Mike PompeoMike PompeoNoem to travel to South Carolina for early voting event Poll: Trump leads 2024 GOP primary trailed by Pence, DeSantis Pence v. Biden on China: Competing but consistent visions MORE’s optimistic assessment of the cease-fire between Turkey and Kurdish forces Sunday, saying Pompeo “lives in a parallel alternate universe.”

“I think the secretary lives in a parallel alternate universe,” Menendez said on ABC’s “This Week,” adding that President TrumpDonald TrumpSenators introduce bipartisan infrastructure bill in rare Sunday session Gosar's siblings pen op-ed urging for his resignation: 'You are immune to shame' Sunday shows - Delta variant, infrastructure dominate MORE’s withdrawal of U.S. forces from northeastern Syria, which led to a Turkish incursion into the region shortly thereafter, was “a betrayal of the Kurds, who fought and died alongside of us in pursuit of ending the threat of ISIS.”

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Menendez said the withdrawal would also weaken Israel and strengthen Iran and was “a betrayal of our foreign policy to the Russians, who are the big winners of this.”

Under the cease-fire agreement brokered by Vice President Pence, Menendez added, there are "no guarantee that the administration has as it relates to the reconfiguration of ISIS" and "no guarantees about our interests."

"Everybody in the region is recalibrating and rethinking about what their alliances should be," Menendez added. "The president unleashed this disaster, and I think that there's going to be a real threat to the Kurds of ethnic cleansing."

Menendez told host George StephanopoulosGeorge Robert StephanopoulosThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Jan. 6 probe, infrastructure to dominate week Sunday shows - Jan. 6 investigation dominates Senate Republican 'not happy' with Pelosi plan to delay infrastructure vote MORE that "if we send a global message, George, that, in fact, we will abandon those who have fought alongside with us, then others in the world, when we are asking them to fight with us or for us, will say, why should I do that?"

Trump and Pompeo have both hailed the ceasefire, although Trump’s foreign policy critics have accused the U.S. of conceding everything Turkey sought in the region.