Like many others, my heart was moved to tears over the picture of Omran Dagnees, a five year old little boy looking battled, bruised and in a state of shock as a result of the war torn country, Syria. It is way past time to end this madness.
The cliff notes review is that the U.S CIA has been involved with assisting and arming the Syrian rebels in their goal to overthrow Syria’s President Bashar Al-Assad since 2013. In 2012, the U.S. Pentagon did establish a program to train rebels to combat ISIS fighters, but this plan was an abysmal failure. After this fubar, the CIA has been arming and training the Syrian rebels in Jordan with most of the funding coming from Saudi Arabia (a Sunni nation) and Qatar. Before U.S. involvement, Saudi Arabia had been arming and financing the Syrian rebels within months after the 2011 uprising because their objective to overthrow Syria’s Shia President Assad is a priority for them.
Meanwhile, Turkey’s border has been a porous sieve, allowing militants to cross back and forth between the borders of Turkey and Syria to resupply, rearm and replace fighters. This untenable situation is about to change. Currently, there are talks between President of Turkey, Tayyip Erdoğan and President Vladimir Putin of Russia to fix the problem of Turkey’s porous border.
If this agreement holds, then the U.S., along with Turkey has to make Saudi Arabia, and Qatar face the reality that the policy to oust President Assad by arming the Syrian rebels has been a catastrophe that the world can no longer accept. President Assad should be allowed to have a transition period where he is required to leave after a 2 year limit so that there is time to have a government infrastructure in place to insure a peaceful transference of power. This then would allow the U.S. with Russia to form a mutually beneficial coalition to stop ISIS.
On 8/19/16 Sputnick News broke the news, “Turkey’s Change of Heart Toward Syria Crucial Step to End War:”
“At the talks with Turkey over Syria, Russia is insisting on establishing strict border control at the Turkish-Syrian border in order to make the war on terrorism more effective.”
“Moscow and Damascus say that currently the northern Syrian border is used as a transition point for delivering militants and weapons to Syria. Turkey’s further steps on the issue will determine the dynamics of relations between Russia and Turkey,” he said.”
“The specialist underscored that at the talks Russia has clear priorities and demands, including closing the Syrian-Turkish borders to militants and arms supplies and control over humanitarian supplies.”
“Ozertem noted that agreements between Russia and the United States as well as between Turkey and Iran would be crucial for the Syrian settlement.”
“He warned that if those agreements fail “some third parties” will try to delay the negotiating process.”
“The expert also said that if Turkey closes the border to stop the transit of militants and weapons to Syria this move could anger Saudi Arabia and Qatar. But actually they are unable to pressure Ankara (Turkey) on the issue.”
On 6/26/16 the NY Times published the article, “CIA Arms For Syrian Rebels Supplied Black Markets, Officials Say,” by Mark Mazetti and Ali Younes which is as follows:
“Weapons shipped into Jordan by the Central Intelligence Agency and Saudi Arabia intended for Syrian rebels have been systematically stolen by Jordanian intelligence operatives and sold to arms merchants on the black market, according to American and Jordanian officials.
“Some of the stolen weapons were used in a shooting in November that killed two Americans and three others at a police training facility in Amman, FBI officials believe after months of investigating the attack, according to people familiar with the investigation.”
“The existence of the weapons theft, which ended only months ago after complaints by the American and Saudi governments, is being reported for the first time after a joint investigation by The New York Times and Al Jazeera.”
On 1/23/16 the New York Times article, “U.S. Relies Heavily on Saudi Money to Support Syrian Rebels,” by Mark Mazzeti and Matt Apuzzo reports the following:
“When President (Barack) Obama secretly authorized the Central Intelligence Agency to begin arming Syria’s embattled rebels in 2013, the spy agency knew it would have a willing partner to help pay for the covert operation. It was the same partner the C.I.A. has relied on for decades for money and discretion in far-off conflicts: the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”
“Since then, the C.I.A. and its Saudi counterpart have maintained an unusual arrangement for the rebel-training mission, which the Americans have code-named Timber Sycamore. Under the deal, current and former administration officials said, the Saudis contribute both weapons and large sums of money, and the C.I.A takes the lead in training the rebels on AK-47 assault rifles and tank-destroying missiles.”
“The alliance persists, kept afloat on a sea of Saudi money and a recognition of mutual self-interest. In addition to Saudi Arabia’s vast oil reserves and role as the spiritual anchor of the Sunni Muslim world, the long intelligence relationship helps explain why the United States has been reluctant to openly criticize Saudi Arabia for its human rights abuses, its treatment of women and its support for the extreme strain of Islam, Wahhabism., that has inspired many of the very terrorist groups the United States is fighting.”
“Although the Saudis have been public about their help arming rebel groups in Syria, the extent of their partnership with the C.I.A.’s covert action campaign and their direct financial support had not been disclosed. Details were pieced together in interviews with a half-dozen current and former American officials and sources from several Persian Gulf countries. Most spoke on the condition of anonymity.”
“From the moment the C.I.A. operation was started, Saudi money supported it.”
“They understand that they have to have us, and we understand that we have to have them,”
The New York times published another exposé, “U.S. Revamping Rebel Force Fighting ISIS in Syria on 9/6/15:
“The training program, which in 2013 began directly arming the rebels under the code name Timber Sycamore, is run by the C.I.A. and several Arab intelligence services and aimed at building up forces opposing President Bashar al-Assad of Syria. The United States and Saudi Arabia are the biggest contributors, with the Saudis contributing both weapons and large sums of money, and with C.I.A. paramilitary operatives taking the lead in training the rebels to use Kalashnikovs, mortars, antitank guided missiles and other weapons.”
“The existence of the program is classified, as are all details about its budget. American officials say that the C.I.A. has trained thousands of rebels in the past three years, and that the fighters made substantial advances on the battlefield against Syrian government forces until Russian military forces — launched last year in support of Mr. Assad — compelled them to retreat.”
“The training program is based in Jordan because of the country’s proximity to the Syrian battlefields. From the beginning, the C.I.A. and the Arab intelligence agencies relied on Jordanian security services to transport the weapons, many bought in bulk in the Balkans and elsewhere.”