CIA Weapons Destined for Syrian Anti-Assad Rebels Sold on Black Market
June 28, 2016 by Warren Mass
Weapons that the CIA and Saudi Arabia shipped into Jordan for the so-called moderate Syrian rebels fighting against the regime of Syrian strongman Bashar al-Assad were stolen by Jordanian intelligence operatives and sold to arms merchants on the black market, said U.S. and Jordanian officials.
News of the weapons theft was reported for the first time on June 26 after a joint investigation by the New York Timesand the Qatar-based Al Jazeera news network.
According to the report, the large shipments of weapons purchased by the CIA and other intelligence agencies in the Balkans and other parts of Eastern Europe included Kalashnikov assault rifles, mortars, and rocket-propelled grenades. Following the delivery of the weapons to Jordan, the CIA used Jordanian General Intelligence Directorate (GID) officers to transport the weapons to the Syrian rebels; however, many of them disappeared in transit.
Jordanian officials told the Times and Al Jazeera that the theft was apparently conducted by GID officers with direct access to the shipments, who “regularly siphoned truckloads” of the weapons while still delivering some of them to designated drop-off locations. The rogue GID officers sold the stolen weapons at several large arms bazaars in Jordan located in Ma’an, in the southern part of the country; in Sahab, outside Amman; and in the Jordan Valley.
After arms dealers began telling their customers that they had large stocks of U.S.- and Saudi-provided weapons, Jordanian intelligence operatives began monitoring the arms market. Honest operatives not involved in the weapons thefts then began sending reports to GID headquarters noting the growing numbers of weapons on the market and the claims of the arms dealers about their origins.
The report also linked the stolen weapons to a fatal shooting by a fired Jordanian police officer at the Jordan International Police Training Center near Amman, the country’s capital, last November. In that incident, the shooter killed five people, including two American contractors, before being killed by Jordanian security forces. The training facility was set up after the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq to help rebuild Iraq’s postwar security forces and to train Palestinian Authority police officers.
The Times/Al Jazeera report noted that the training program for which the stolen arms were bound, under the code name Timber Sycamore, is run by the CIA and several Arab intelligence services. In 2013, the operation began to directly arm the anti-Assad rebels. The United States and Saudi Arabia are the biggest contributors to Timber Sycamore, with the Saudis contributing both weapons and large sums of money, and with CIA paramilitary operatives taking the lead in training the rebels to use Kalashnikovs, mortars, antitank guided missiles, and other weapons.
Aside from the fact that the theft of these weapons represents a major embarrassment for the CIA, it is a stark reminder of the insanity of our nation’s ongoing interventionist foreign policy. First and foremost of the many questions that every American should ask about that foreign policy is: Why is the United States aiding a rebel insurgency against the legitimate (if brutally authoritarian) government of a sovereign nation? In a region where ISIS is universally recognized as the most dangerous terrorist threat not only to the areas it occupies but even beyond them, it might be supposed that destroying ISIS — not Assad — would be the objective of every nation. Yet, as was noted in an article in The New American last August:
Everybody has heard of the group of barbarians styling themselves the Islamic State, or ISIS, or, ISIL, or whatever they’re calling themselves this week. These savages are still butchering their way through huge segments of Iraq and Syria with U.S. weapons. What fewer people know about is that this terrorist group is largely the Frankenstein creation of the Obama administration’s so-called “anti-ISIS” coalition.
The article quoted a part of Vice President Biden’s 2014 speech at Harvard during which he admitted that there was no “moderate middle” among the anti-Assad rebels in Syria, adding that the insurgency was so focused on removing Assad that it was uninterested in stopping ISIS. However, Biden limited his criticism to the aid that our “allies” in the region were supplying to rebels that included terrorist groups and did not mention the aid our own CIA was giving to them. Biden said, in part:
What my constant cry was that our biggest problem was our allies…. What were they doing? They were so determined to take down Assad and have a proxy Sunni-Shia war, what did they do? They poured hundreds of millions of dollars and tens, thousands, of tons of weapons into anyone who would fight. Except that the people who were being supplied were al-Nusra and al-Qaeda and extremist elements of jihadis coming from other parts of the world.
Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) speaking on CBS’s This Morning back in 2014, spoke out against a measure proposed in Congress to aid the Syrian rebels:
It’s a mistake to arm them. Most of the arms we’ve given to the so-called moderate rebels have wound up in the hands of ISIS, because ISIS simply takes it from them, or it’s given to them, or we mistakenly actually give it to some of the radicals.
It would seem that the flow of U.S. arms to ISIS was of such magnitude that the recent revelation of CIA weapons being sold on the black market in Jordan is minor in comparison.
A report in The Hill on September 15, 2014 cited Paul’s assertion that rebel fighters in Syria are focused on overthrowing Syrian President Assad, rather than fighting ISIS and noted that some rebel units had recently agreed to a truce with ISIS.
“I would say one insightful piece of news from the last week is, some of the moderate rebels, so-called moderate rebels have now signed a cease-fire with ISIS,” Paul said. “So, really their enemy is really Assad. They don’t really care what ISIS does.”
As The New American has documented as far back as the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003, our interventionist foreign policy in the Middle East has only served to destabilize the region and set the stage for the birth of ISIS, and its spread across large areas of both Iraq and Syria. ISIS has gone from relative obscurity to becoming the world’s best-known terrorist organization in just two years.
The invasion of Iraq to remove Saddam Hussein from power in 2003 created a power vacuum as the authoritarian but stable government headed by Saddam was filled by an assortment of radicalized factions and an ineffective, weak central government in Baghdad unable to maintain order. With the withdrawal of U.S. troops in 2011, things only worsened, and ISIS began its quest to capture much of Iraq and begin its reign of terror. George W. Bush, who authorized the invasion as president, all but admitted this during an interview with CBS Television’s Face the Nation in November 2014 — though he still would not admit that the invasion, itself, had been a mistake.
“I think it was the right decision [to go into Iraq],” Bush told CBS News’ Bob Schieffer. “My regret is that … a violent group of people have risen up again…. This is ‘Al Qaeda plus’ … they need to be defeated. And I hope we do…. I hope the strategy works.”
That “violent group of people,” of course, is ISIS.
If Bush’s action created fertile ground for ISIS in Iraq, his successor, Barack Obama did the same in Syria.
The New American has published multiple articles providing details of how the foreign policy of the Obama administration has contributed to the growth of ISIS and its success in gaining control over much of Syria, including the one we quoted from above.
Sometimes our government has used troops to bring about regime change in the Middle East, and other times it has used the CIA to accomplish this end covertly. Whatever the methodology, however, our intervention in the region has always made things less stable and has fueled the rise of terrorism and Islamic extremism.
In Syria, Obama-backed “Rebels” Battle Obama-backed Militias
Amnesty International Says ISIS Armed With U.S. Weapons
Anti-ISIS Coalition Built ISIS
ISIS: The Best Terror Threat U.S. Tax Money Can Buy
Obama’s “Anti-ISIS” Coalition Built ISIS, Biden Admits
Obama Helped ISIS in Syria, Now Fights It in Iraq
South Korean Intelligence Warns of ISIS Threat to U.S. Bases
Newly Released CIA Documents Reveal Details of Torture at Black Sites
BENGHAZI REPORT: HERE’S WHAT THEY’RE HIDING
June 29, 2016 by Clifford Cunningham
Facts point to Benghazi’s use as transfer hub to ship guns to ISIS
The House Select Committee on Benghazi released a report attacking the Obama administration’s response to the terror attack in Benghazi, while conveniently omitting information pointing to Benghazi’s use as a staging ground for clandestine arms transfers to Al-Qaeda-linked rebels in Syria.
The nearly 800-page report, released earlier this week, attacked then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton over her failure to provide adequate security for America’s diplomatic facilities in Libya in the aftermath of the Western-backed overthrow of Libyan President Muammar Gaddafi, as well as President Obama and his administration for perpetuating the narrative that the attack was caused by outrage over a YouTube video depicting the Muslim Prophet Muhammad.
Yet the committee’s report omitted all facts relating to the circumstances surrounding the Benghazi attack and the CIA’s clandestine arms smuggling program to Al-Qaeda-linked rebels fighting to overthrow the Syrian government.
As Kurt Nimmo reported, “a number of guests appearing on the Alex Jones Show following the attack have built an indisputable case that the CIA was shipping arms from U.S.-controlled facilities located at the U.S. mission in Benghazi to its mercenaries in Syria and the murder of ambassador Stevens was carried out by an al-Qaeda affiliated group as part of a turf war between the CIA and elements in the Pentagon.”
Retired Army Lt. General William G. Boykin, speaking with CNS News, suggested the United States was using the CIA annex in Benghazi to facilitate secret arms transfers to rebels in Syria, explaining Ambassador Chris Stevens’ presence in the city.
“Then what was Stevens doing there on September 11 of 2012?” Boykin said. “More supposition was that he was now funneling guns to the rebel forces in Syria, using essentially the Turks to facilitate that. Was that occurring, (a), and if so, was it a legal covert action?”
According to reports, the CIA subjected operatives to monthly polygraph tests in an attempt to suppress details of the arms smuggling operation in Benghazi that was ongoing when the attack occurred.
It should come as no surprise that any facts detailing arms transfers to Al-Qaeda-linked rebels in Syria would be kept secret, as the United States, NATO, Saudi Arabia and the Sunni Gulf States have made it their mission to fund and arm radical Wahhabist groups to destabilize the Middle East and bring about a clash of civilizations.
Hillary Clinton’s campaign spokesman, Brian Fallon, called the report a rehash of “discredited conspiracy theories,” a term ironically coined by the CIA in 1967 to attack anyone who questions the government narrative.
Bill Clinton, Attorney General Loretta Lynch Meet on Private Plane
Attorney General Loretta Lynch met privately with President Bill Clinton on a private plane.
A source tipped off the local ABC affiliate about the brief meeting, which reportedly lasted about 30 minutes, at the Phoenix’s Sky Harbor International Airport.
President Clinton reportedly learned Lynch was arriving soon and waited to meet with her.
According to ABC 15, the meeting occurred hours before the House Select Committee on Benghazi released its final report to the public.
The private meeting comes as Lynch’s Justice Department is investigating presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton’s use of a personal, private email server during her time as Secretary of State.
“Lynch said the private meeting on the tarmac did not involve these topics,” ABC 15 reports.
“I did see President Clinton at the Phoenix airport as he was leaving and spoke to myself and my husband on the plane,” Lynch stated, confirming the meeting. “Our conversation was a great deal about grandchildren, it was primarily social about our travels and he mentioned golf he played in Phoenix.”
“There was no discussion on any matter pending before the Department or any matter pending with any other body, there was no discussion of Benghazi, no discussion of State Department emails, by way of example I would say it was current news of the day, the Brexit decision and what it would mean,” Lynch said about the meeting.