Author: Judy

The US’s Military Action in Syria

The US’s Military Action in Syria

Biden, Democrats’ downward spiral began with Afghanistan

By Steve Benen

14 July 2016

The Democrats’ foreign policy under Barack Obama has been one of retreat to the Left. The most flagrant example is the decision of the Obama administration to turn from the Middle East in 2011.

The Obama administration chose to seek to keep US forces out of the Middle East, despite the fact that, through its actions in Afghanistan and Iraq, the US had directly or indirectly been involved in more than 80 death and destruction in Syria.

The Obama administration chose to back Syrian opposition parties and anti-regime “resistance” groups, without sending in arms or troops. But the opposition did not win an outright victory, as was their goal. Instead, the Syrian uprising morphed into a full-blown civil war. It is estimated that some 90,000 people were killed in this civil war.

Obama made clear that the US was not interested in a “revolutionary” solution in Syria, and that the US did not want to get directly involved in a military campaign but only help “reconcile” the different parties to end the civil war.

The result was the so-called “cessation of hostilities” agreement, which was signed by the US and Russia in the Astana peace talks in late 2015. In exchange for the US and Russia withdrawing their support of the pro-regime parties, it was agreed that the US and Russia would begin withdrawing the remaining US military and non-military personnel from Syria. It would be a three-year process, but there will likely be more US troops there during the course of this process.

There was nothing to indicate at the time that the US had a plan for how to remove its troops and the military equipment that would necessarily accompany their departure.

This was not the first time that US military action in the Middle East had been announced, but it was the first time ever in which the US military action was kept secret. On October 7, 2011, a US-Israeli military coalition bombed Syria’s al-Furqan military academy

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