So the United States and Syria haven't so much broken up as they have transitioned to being friends with benefits.

Bradley fighting vehicles with the 30th Armored Brigade Combat Team — a National Guard unit that includes troops from North Carolina, South Carolina, and West Virginia — have arrived in Deir ez-Zor, the U.S. military's top spokesman in Syria and Iraq tweeted on Thursday.

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump said on Tuesday the U.S. military had killed the person who likely would have succeeded Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi as the leader of Islamic State.

"Just confirmed that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi's number one replacement has been terminated by American troops," Trump wrote on Twitter. "Most likely would have taken the top spot."

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Beloved readers: After a week filled with more twists and turns than this reporter's lower intestines, your friend and humble narrator has no idea where the hell troops are withdrawing from or going to.

In past wars, it was possible to mark the U.S. military's positions with flags on paper maps. But we live in the age of Twitter, and since the commander in chief seems to be visited by the Good Idea Fairy every 15 minutes, there is no way to have an updated map of where U.S. forces are.

With regards to Syria, the U.S. military isn't leaving. It's repositioning forces because the mission has changed from fighting ISIS to protecting the oil. (This also may make the first time a sitting president has not tried to camouflage sending troops to protect oil by claiming the United States was liberating oppressed people.)

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BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Germany's defense minister presented to NATO her proposal for a security zone in northern Syria on Thursday, receiving support from Turkey and the United States but also a warning from the alliance's chief it may involve the United Nations.

Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer told allies that an internationally controlled zone would also need Russia, now the dominant power in Syria, if it was to protect displaced civilians and ensure the fight continues against Islamic State militants, diplomats said.

But she insisted at the meeting of NATO defense ministers in Brussels that the task of patrolling the Turkish-Syrian border could not fall to Russia and Turkey alone, telling reporters: "The status quo is not a satisfactory solution."

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President Donald Trump radiated optimism on Wednesday as he announced that he expected the cease fire between Turkish and Kurdish forces in northeast Syria to become permanent.

"However, you would also define the word 'permanent' in that part of the world as somewhat questionable," the president said during a speech at the White House. "We all understand that. But I do believe it will be permanent."

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Editor's Note: This article originally appeared on Radio Free Europe/Radio Free Liberty

Russian President Vladimir Putin says he and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan have made "momentous" decisions regarding Ankara's military offensive in northeast Syria, with both sides saying they had agreed to conduct joint military patrols in the tense region.

Russian and Turkish officials said a five-day U.S.-brokered truce had been extended for 150 hours, starting on midday on October 23, and that Kurdish militias would be required to clear out of a 30-kilometer buffer zone along the Turkish border.

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