After talking up plans to expand the Iraq air war into Syria, officials now say no such decision has been made, but that the Pentagon is preparing to begin surveillance flights over ISIS-held eastern Syria.
Without direct US strikes, that means the surveillance will by and large be used to provide targeting intelligence to Syria’s Assad government, in the hopes that their own substantial air force will launch the attacks on ISIS.
Over the weekend, it was reported that the US has already begun providing such intelligence to the Assad government, funneling it through Germany’s intelligence agency to avoid direct contact with Syria, which is still nominally a US enemy.
Eventually, the US is still expected to begin attacks of its own inside of Syria, but the problem of coordinating more publicly with the Assad government so soon after trying to sell the American public on invading Syria to oust Assad remains unresolved.
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