Monday, September 21, 2015

The U.S. is looking for a few good men in Syria, but they may be out of luck.

The funds being spent by the United States to train Syrian rebel forces are being wasted, sources have told The Washington Times, and there are several problems at play, chiefly an inability to properly vet candidates and a differing agenda held by the trainees.

Upwards of $500 million has been allocated to the effort being carried out by U.S. special operations forces, but they are not optimistic. It seems they may have been given an impossible task.

The U.S. screening process for recruiting Syrian rebels is said to be ridiculous. “They [American forces] are attempting to vet people with no history and it’s really hit and miss. This is contributing to the dropout rate,” one anonymous source told The Times. “They really are doing the best they can but it’s extremely tough.”

Most of the Syrian prospects are said to be afraid to fight. The dropout rate after one week is unacceptably high. Performance on the battlefield has been pathetic, and high capture and casualty rates stemmed from an engagement with the al Qaeda-linked al-Nusra Front.

After this incident in late July, the original group of Syrian fighters refused to fight al-Nusra, preferring instead only to fight ISIS and Russian-backed Syrian government forces. American airpower had to keep al-Nusra away from the American-trained Syrian force.

AFP reports a new batch of 75 American-trained Syrian fighters has surfaced, entering Syria from their training base in Turkey, covered by American air power. The possibility of an American-backed force engaging with Russian aircraft or troops now seems high.

I guess this is why Secretary of State John Kerry has called Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov three times in the last week.

Copyright © 2019 The Washington Times, LLC.