- “Fox & Friends” host Brian Kilmeade on Friday ripped into President Donald Trump over his abrupt withdrawal of US troops from Syria.
- “He also is doing exactly what he criticized President Obama for doing,” Kilmeade said. “He said, ‘President Obama is the founder of ISIS.’ He just refounded ISIS.”
- White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told Kilmeade his comments were “outrageous.”
“Fox & Friends” host Brian Kilmeade on Friday ripped into President Donald Trump over his abrupt withdrawal of US troops from Syria, accusing him of opening the door for the Islamic State terrorist group, also known as ISIS, to make a major comeback.
Speaking with White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Kilmeade said, “Sarah, he’s giving Russia a big win. [Russian President] Vladimir Putin praised him. He also is doing exactly what he criticized President [Barack] Obama for doing. He said, ‘President Obama is the founder of ISIS.’ He just refounded ISIS.”
Kilmeade noted that ISIS likely still has thousands of fighters in the region despite the fact it’s lost its self-declared caliphate, or the large swath of territory it held across Iraq and Syria. “The president is really on the griddle with this,” Kilmeade said.
Brian Kilmeade just called out Trump to Sarah Sanders on Syria:
"Sarah, he's giving Russia a big win. Vladimir Putin praised him. He's also doing exactly what he criticized President Obama for doing. He said President Obama was the founder of ISIS. He just refounded ISIS." pic.twitter.com/PC48rTkQ77
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) December 21, 2018
Looking somewhat shocked and bemused at Kilmeade’s assertion, Sanders replied, “Brian, I have to respectfully and vehemently disagree with you.”
She added, “The idea that the president has had anything to do with helping ISIS reemerge is absolutely outrageous.”
Kilmeade, who often defends Trump’s policies, then said, “Leaving is helping.”
Sanders continued to push back, stating that if ISIS wants to “pick a fight” with Trump, he will “destroy them and defeat them.”
In announcing the Syria pullout, Trump said ISIS was defeated, despite much evidence to the contrary.
Defense Secretary James Mattis, who did not agree with Trump’s decision on Syria, resigned on Thursday.
During the 2016 US presidential campaign, Trump accused Obama of being the “founder of ISIS” because of the power vacuum created after he withdrew US troops from Iraq in 2011.
“He was the founder,” Trump said at the time. “The way he got out of Iraq was that – that was the founding of ISIS, OK?”