Obama: US Committed to Arming Syrian Rebels

Rebels Slam Congress for Delaying Arms

In discussions with Saudi King Abdullah, President Obama reiterated his “commitment” to arming Syrian rebels, a pledge he initially made a month ago, but which so far hasn’t led to any deliveries of US arms.

The CIA has been involved in arms smuggling into Syria since the war began, so far sending arms from Saudi Arabia and other nations. The US weapons have been shipped to Jordan in anticipation of following the same route.

But President Obama’s designs on such arms shipments have run afoul of Congress, which has so far refused to sign off on the deal, noting that President Obama doesn’t appear to have much of a plan beyond throwing weapons into the war.

The big concern is that a large chunk of the rebels fighting on the ground are al-Qaeda linked Islamists, and the vision of US arms in al-Qaeda hands doesn’t sit well with some. Syrian rebels are slamming Congress for blocking the aid, saying the concerns about al-Qaeda are unwarranted.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.