The president made the goof while tweeting about his recent decision to withdraw U.S. troops from northern Syria, which has drawn bipartisan criticism. The withdrawal allowed the incursion of Turkish military, who led an offensive against the American-allied Kurdish forces, killing scores of Kurdish fighters and civilians and displacing hundreds of thousands of people.
A subsequent U.S.-brokered ceasefire, which Trump referenced in his tweet, was negotiated with Turkey on Thursday. The agreement effectively allows Turkey to secure significant swaths of Syrian land while displacing America’s Kurdish allies.
A statement from the Syrian Democratic Forces Sunday said Turkish forces continued to advance and launch attacks despite the ceasefire agreement. Turkey’s Defense Ministry said there had been 22 violations of the agreement, according to CNN.
On Sunday, as a senior administration official told The New York Times the president was leaning toward a new Pentagon plan to keep a small number of troops in Syria, in order to block Syrian and Russian forces from obtaining access to the region’s oil fields and to fight ISIS.
Under this plan, a few hundred troops would be moved to the border with Iraq, the senior administration official told the Times, contradicting Trump’s claim he was “bringing soldiers home.” Hundreds of trucks carrying U.S. personnel were seen traveling toward the Iraqi border Sunday.
The White House did not immediately respond to HuffPost’s request for comment.
The president’s tweet, sent that same day, was mocked on Twitter, with people highlighting other errors ― besides the glaring “Esperanto” gaffe ― in the text.
It was deleted and reissued with Esper’s name spelled correctly around 90 minutes later, but people took other issues with the tweet’s content:
And people couldn’t help but ridicule the obvious “Esperanto” mistake: