US ground troops were attacked outside of the Syrian city of Manbij today, according to coalition spokesman Col. Ryan Dillon. They came under fire from Syrian rebels allied with Turkey, and US forces returned fire before fleeing back into Manbij.
This is a fight that many have feared was coming for months, and is particularly significant because the Syrian rebels attacking the US troops are the same rebel forces that the US was directly arming through CIA arms smuggling operations for years.
With the CIA program ended, the rebels are now aligned with Turkey, and Turkey has made clear since their invasion of Syria that they intended to try to capture Manbij militarily, to expel Kurdish forces. It is only the presence of US troops in Manbij that has deterred NATO member Turkey from attacking the city.
But Turkey’s been very publicly griping about the US support for the Kurds. That, combined with the Turkish-backed rebels claiming the US “abandoned” them by cutting aid, appears to have finally provoked some fighting.
This puts a final exclamation point on what a bad idea the CIA arms program turned out to be, as not only did it not accomplish the regime change goals of the time, it’s armed up rebel factions that are now eager to fight US troops. While Turkey clearly has an interest in preventing this going too far, it’s unlikely this is the last of the US clash with these rebels.
23 thoughts on “US Military Battles Syrian Rebels Armed by CIA”
manpads for afghans…..!!!!
Sooner or later we are going to have the Marines backing one faction, the Army another. Well at least an opportunity to figure out who is tougher.
Remember how they chased your soldiers out some months ago?
Yes I remember it well.
America is hated by all the people in the Middle East (and not only there). They have inflicted too much killings and destructions.
It’s our dang government. Don’t blame the citizenry!
2000: Bush supposedly talked about peace (I can’t verify, largely ignored his campaign): Failed
2008: Obama was the peace candidate: Failed.
2012: Ron Paul crushed by Mitt the Destroyer
2016: Trump was the peacier candidate: Failed.
And throughout the 90s, 00s, 10s: we’ve had Buchanan and Constitution Party conservatives who’ve run on anti-war.
Trump right now seems to not believe in the warring. But he sends troops anyway. Obama didn’t seem to believe in the warring. Bush looked like he was high. Deep State, donors, bankers, the mass media? Whoever’s to blame, it is strange.
Stupidity, incompetence, ignorance, evil or some combination of these pretty much characterizes US actions abroad.
You have to laugh really. Not that the CIA or the military brass care.
As usual, the US is incapable of doing the right thing until we’ve tried everything else.
The Reuters report (first link) says US troops were “patrolling to keep tensions down”, and have come under fire several times. So US troops reduce tension by presenting themselves as targets? That’s Pentagon thinking for you.
You just make this stuff up…
Did we ever have an actual list of groups or number of fighters that the CIA supported in Syria?
All I remember is that when the Russians started bombing in 9/30/2015 suddenly everyone was a CIA backed moderate rebel. Al Qaeda ceased to exist.
The lesson some probably take from this is that the arms shipments shouldn’t have ended. But how easily bribing a faction to fight a particular other faction can morph into a protection racket… “keep providing the arms, or we’ll start using them on you.”
The lack of shared agenda between the US and Turkey exposed by this should be an even bigger reason to re-think meddling in Syria at all. What does the NATO charter say about collective self-defense if two members attack each other..?
This is off-topic but the Antiwar icon is no longer appearing on my bookmarks bar. The space for it is blank. To save space on the bookmarks bar, I leave the site names off of it. As a result of not seeing the icon, I have not viewed AW for at least a week.
I realize that not everyone uses a bookmarks bar but why not have the icon?
Trump Military Battles Jihadists Armed by Obama:
We have seen this before. Obama armed rebels in Syria that began to fight each other:
“Assad Must Go!”
Maybe Obama was just following orders!!!
Google, “As they gathered in the Roosevelt Room that afternoon, July 13, 2009, there was mounting concern about Obama.”
Sanders also called for Syria regime change this year. Just saying 🙂
I wish Trump would go on the war-path, start posting photos of US senators with all these terrorists, including the weird “Nazis” in the Ukraine and extremists in, eg. places like Egypt (not just Syria).
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