Donald Trump’s seventh week in office opened with confusion about his accusation, via Twitter, that his phones had been tapped by President Obama. There’s no evidence that happened. But other things did, like the unveiling of a new executive order banning immigrants and travelers from six Muslim-majority countries, and a decision to send hundreds of American troops into Syria.
Here is everything you need to know about what the Trump administration did this past week.
Instituted a new travel ban. After protests and legal challenges to his original set of restrictions on travelers from seven Muslim-majority countries, Trump rolled out a narrower executive order. The policy bans people from six countries—Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen—from immigrating or traveling to the United States for 90 days, exempting Iraqis, as well as green-card and current visa holders. “But even with these key changes,” Julianne Hing explains, “Trump’s latest executive order is, in intention and function, the same as the administration’s first time around.” Democratic attorneys general in several states have already initiated legal challenges to the new order.
Sent 400 Marines into Syria. The Pentagon announced Thursday that it was deploying 400 Marines into Syria, near Raqqa, to aid in the battle against ISIS. The deployment nearly doubles the amount of US troops in Syria, and the new deployments will reportedly fire artillery rounds at ISIS fighters in support of the local ground forces. This is an important shift in the US approach to Syria—under Obama, the military “mostly shied away from using conventional forces in Syria,” reported The Washington Post. The head of US Central Command also said this week that more US troops will likely be headed to Afghanistan.