The US military will send nearly 1,000 troops to train Syrian rebel forces as part of a long-planned effort to build up a “moderate opposition” to take on the ISIS group, the Pentagon said Friday.
The training will take place in Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Qatar and is expected to start in the “early spring,” spokesman Rear Admiral John Kirby told a news conference.
More than 400 trainers would start deploying in the next four to six weeks, backed by a similar number of support troops that will provide help with logistics, communications and intelligence, he said.
The total troop number “for this mission could approach 1,000,” Kirby said. “It might even exceed that.”
About 5,400 Syrian rebels would be trained and armed in the first year of the program, with an initial group of fighters possibly ready to enter battle “before the end of the year,” he said.
The US Congress backed legislation last month to fund the training and equipping “moderate Syrian rebels”, allocating about $500 million for the Syrian effort.
But President Barack Obama has been accused of moving too slowly to help the opposition while the ISIS group and other hardline extremists have taken on an increasingly dominant role on the battlefield.
Obama, wary of having the US drawn into Syria’s multi-sided civil war, had long kept what he called “moderate rebels” at arm’s length. But the rise of the ISIS group last year prompted a change in strategy, with the US president announcing plans in September to train and arm the opposition.
The US administration, however, has placed a priority on fighting the ISIS militants rather than President Bashar al-Assad’s government, an emphasis that has led to disagreements with some allies, including Turkey.
The Pentagon made no mention of Assad in announcing the training effort.
The American troops will complement a small CIA training program that is already in place but officials declined to discuss whether the military would oversee the spy agency’s efforts.
Two other countries also have pledged to help train the Syrian fighters, but officials did not say which governments or how many trainers they would contribute.
US intelligence agencies and foreign partners are working to identify potential recruits for the training program, who will then be vetted to ensure they have no ties to the ISIS group or other extremists, officials said.
Major General Michael Nagata, who is overseeing the US-led fight against the ISIS terrorists in Syria, met a range of opposition figures in Istanbul earlier this week and came away encouraged, Kirby said.
To avoid a repeat of insider attacks that have plagued the military training mission in Afghanistan, a portion of the US troops to be deployed would focus on security for their compatriots, he said.
In Iraq, US troops already have started training Iraqi government and Kurdish forces in the fight against the IS jihadists, with about 2,100 Americans deployed there.
Family members told the PIC reporter on Saturday that the court passed the sentence on Friday and charged Sabana with making such contacts during his visit to Jordan.
They said that the charges were unfounded, adding that the sentence was illegal and proved the summary trials conducted against Palestinian citizens.
The relatives affirmed that Sabana was not involved with any political party or organization and was just an activist who employs his cartoons in exposing the Israeli occupation’s crimes.
Sabana was arrested on his return from Jordan last February and held for interrogation. His brother, Thamer, was also detained for his pro-prisoners’ activities.
A five-part series of essential information from BPEarthwatch. Well researched and explained, a must see for sure! Don’t forget to share!
Are you truly, fully prepared & ready? Have you included this INDISPENSABLE component? (Scroll to below the video).
Part 1 WORLD WAR 3. THE FINAL SOCIAL CATACLYSM
Part 2 The Antichrist
Part 3 Destruction of Israel and the Middle East
Part 4 The Black Swan
Part 5 World Stocks in Trouble
“Today the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court Fatou Bensouda opened a preliminary examination into the situation in Palestine.” – The Times of Israel, Jan 16, 2015
It had to come. With the International Criminal Court receiving bad press for its inefficiency, and a seeming lethargy in its prosecuting nerve, Israel came storming in with the clearest of messages against announcements of a preliminary investigation into the Palestinian issue. It will do everything it can to prevent its soldiers from being investigated for war crimes by a foreign body citing universal jurisdiction.
The Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman led the charge. Liberman released a statement to the press on Friday finding it repugnant that Israel should be the subject of any “probe”.
“The same court which after more than 200,000 deaths didn’t see fit to intervene in what was taking place in Syria or in Libya or in other places now finds it worthwhile to ‘examine’ the most moral army in the world” (Jerusalem Post, Jan 16).
The importance of Israel’s statement lies precisely in its own assessment about the role of international institutions, which it deems inadequate before superior domestic experiments. Otherwise, any international entity is only useful as long as the rules are appropriately adjusted.
This is the very definition of law that ceases to be law, one that slips into the area of pure power politics. This concept lies at the core of those critical of ICC procedure, such as former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger. This is not in itself surprising, as Kissinger might himself, given the appropriate circumstances, face a successful prosecution suit. Writing for Foreign Affairs (July/August 2001), Kissinger called the move towards an international court as “an unprecedented movement… to submit international politics to judicial procedures.”
The argument that seems to be limping rather than galloping, is that of “substituting the tyranny of judges for that of governments; historically, the dictatorship of the virtuous has often led to inquisitions and even witch-hunts.” History gave us the Nuremberg trials, the specific tribunals of Rwanda and former Yugoslavia. But an international tribunal?
Kenneth Roth of Human Rights Watch came with an appropriate rejoinder to Kissinger’s argument against a universal war crimes court. “Behind much of the savagery of modern history lies impunity. Tyrants commit atrocities, including genocide, when they calculate they can get away with them” (Foreign Affairs, Sept/Oct 2001).
Another tactic has become clear in targeting the ICC. Its judiciary, and its practices, are seen as tyrannical by powers which can have no truck with internationally directed scrutiny that refers to solid legal principle. For that reason, any judicial measures on its part are deemed “political” rather than “legal.”
Since the ICC is the enemy for the practice of Israeli politics and power, it is deemed a body that, by its very nature, is political. The only legal upholders, by a somewhat perverse sleight of hand, is Israel itself, with the “most moral army in the world”, as Liberman cites.
Israel is the righteous guardian of law, a sort of dangerous virtue that Kissinger attributed to the universal jurisdiction movement. It is impossible to imagine any violations from the guardian. Benjamin Netanyahu’s statement about the ICC is typically aligned to this view: “It’s scandalous that mere days after terrorists massacred Jews in France, the ICC prosecutor opens a probe against the Jewish state. And this is because we defend our citizens from Hamas, a terror group that signed a unity pact with the Palestinian Authority and war criminals who fired thousands of rockets at Israeli citizens.”
The ICC’s chief prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, has had to provide words of calm instruction for critics. “A preliminary examination is not an investigation but a process of examining the information available in order to reach a fully informed determination on whether there is a reasonable basis to proceed with a (full) investigation.”
Israel’s opposition is not unique. From the other side of the fence, Russia and China have been foremost in opposing efforts to refer the Syrian conflict to ICC procedures. In January, 2013, a statement from the Russian Foreign Ministry expressed alarm at the suggestion. “We view this initiative as untimely and counterproductive to achieving today’s main goal – an immediate end to the bloodshed in Syria.”
This was repeated in May 2014, when other powers on the UN Security Council insisted that Syria account for war crimes before the ICC. Samantha Power, the grandee of human rights at the Security Council, and US Ambassador, would exhort how, “Our grandchildren will ask us years from now how we could have failed to bring justice to people living in hell on earth” (ABC, May 22, 2014).
Hells vary, and Power’s suggestion is that a Palestinian hell does not quite float so well on the international morality market as a Syrian one. Syrians were obvious bogeymen in need of legal chastising, while Israel was not. In fact, Power was keen to keep the ICC away from meddling in the Palestinian issue with a suitably long barge pole. “The ICC is of course something that we have been absolutely adamant about. I mean, this is something that really poses a profound threat to Israel.” When law is inconvenient, politics shall reserve its right to judge.
Israel has become something of a shock soldier against the ICC. Other powers will be quietly supporting its mission, seeing this as a chance to push back against a globalised jurisdiction that nets, rather than avoids, placing leaders before a court of law. For them, the very idea of universal jurisdiction is anathema to power politics. It is precisely for that reason that such efforts should fail.
Dr. Binoy Kampmark was a Commonwealth Scholar at Selwyn College, Cambridge. He lectures at RMIT University, Melbourne. Email: [email protected]
By Susan Duclos – All News PipeLine
Recently ANP pointed out the connections bewteen the US, Saudi Arabia, the Charlie Hebdo massacre and ISIS and now we see another major report which adds more pieces to the jigsaw puzzle, showing that the US is indeed, not only supporting terrorist groups, but is continuing to actively use the US Military to train our attackers!
Starting with the new report from USA Today, headlined with “400 U.S. troops will deploy to train Syrian opposition,” which provides details, confirmed by Defense officials, that US troops will be training Syrian “rebels” out of sites in Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Qatar, as ” part of the overall campaign to defeat the Islamic State militants who seized large swaths of Syria and Iraq.” The USA Today was citing an AP article with that last quote.
What both the AP article and the USA Today article neglected to mention, thinking it fell down the memory hole of the internet, was that reports as far back as 2012 proved conclusively that Syrian “rebels” not only joined a pact with ISIS to not attack them but many of it’s members, trained BY THE US, joined the terrorist group after said training.
As the American government is contemplating on whether or not to launch an airstrike on ISIS that is threatening to destroy Iraq, reports have now surfaced that way back in 2012, the US Army had trained members of the same terrorist group in Jordan.
As per several corroborated reports, hundreds of ISIS militia were indeed trained by US instructors for covert operations to destabilize Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s government, though the training was strictly for Syria.
Other major media groups such as Agence France-Presse, Huffington Post, RT, just to name a few, all provided information on the Syrian “rebels” connection with ISIS, their agreement and pacts with them, yet now the US is sending 400 more troops, and their “enablers” to quote the USA Today article, to train more.
As recently as December 25, 2014, Syrian National Coalition representative to the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Adib Al-Shishakli, warned that “Moderate Syrian opposition fighters are increasingly joining the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) for financial reasons.” A July 8, 2014 report shows that a 1,000 strong Syrian Rebel brigade defected to ISIS.
ISIS has threatened to attack the west time and time again, has claimed to have hacked into the CENTCOM mobile devices then splashed personal information from those intrusions onto the CENTCOM social media accounts of Twitter and YouTube, threatened to burn NY, and much more, yet the US claims they are trying to destroy them out of one side of their mouth, while at the same time actively training the very people that are joining the group.
The US and their “allies” are funding ISIS, training them, arming them at the same time claiming to fight them………. Anyone else see a problem with this picture?
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