Graham: 'Obama-like mistake' for Trump to withdraw troops from Syria

Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamGraham, Cuellar press Biden to name border czar Trump takes two punches from GOP The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - US gymnast wins all-around gold as Simone Biles cheers from the stands MORE (R-S.C.) on Wednesday criticized President TrumpDonald TrumpMeghan McCain: Democrats 'should give a little credit' to Trump for COVID-19 vaccine Trump testing czar warns lockdowns may be on table if people don't get vaccinated Overnight Health Care: CDC details Massachusetts outbreak that sparked mask update | White House says national vaccine mandate 'not under consideration at this time' MORE's decision to withdraw U.S. forces from Syria, saying the move would be an "Obama-like mistake."

"If these media reports are true, it will be an Obama-like mistake made by the Trump Administration," Graham wrote in a statement. "While American patience in confronting radical Islam may wane, the radical Islamists’ passion to kill Americans and our allies never wavers."

Earlier Wednesday, The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post reported that Trump is planning to "immediately" remove 2,000 troops from northern Syria.

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Trump appeared to confirm the reports in a tweet Wednesday, saying that the U.S. has "defeated" the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in Syria.

"We have defeated ISIS in Syria, my only reason for being there during the Trump Presidency," he tweeted.

Graham, who sits on the Senate Armed Services Committee, added that a withdrawal "would be a big win" for ISIS, Iran, Syrian President Bashar Assad and Russia. 

"I fear it will lead to devastating consequences for our nation, the region, and throughout the world. ... Staying there is an insurance policy against the reemergence of ISIS and destruction of our Kurdish allies who fought so bravely against them," he added. 

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders also said in a statement Wednesday that the U.S. had defeated ISIS in Syria and confirmed that the U.S. was beginning to remove troops.

“Five years ago, ISIS was a very powerful and dangerous force in the Middle East, and now the United States has defeated the territorial caliphate. These victories over ISIS in Syria do not signal the end of the Global Coalition or its campaign. We have started returning United States troops home as we transition to the next phase of this campaign," Sanders said.