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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 1/20/18

Trump's Plan B for Syria: Occupation and Intimidation

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From Smirking Chimp

Secretary Tillerson delivering a speech written for him by neocons in the State Department.
Secretary Tillerson delivering a speech written for him by neocons in the State Department.
(Image by U.S. Department of State)
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On Wednesday, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson announced the creation of a de facto autonomous Kurdish state in east Syria that will be supported by the United States and defended by a US-backed "proxy" army of occupation. Tillerson's announcement was made at a confab he attended at Stanford University at the Hoover Institute. According to The Hill:

"Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Wednesday outlined a new U.S. strategy in Syria, hinging on maintaining an indefinite military presence in the country with the goal of ousting the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad and keeping militant groups at bay.

"Speaking at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, Tillerson sought to make the case for an extended U.S. military role, backed by a United Nations-brokered political solution, in the war-torn country.

"A U.S. withdrawal, he said, would likely have disastrous consequences.

"'Total withdrawal would restore Assad and continue brutal treatment of his own people,' Tillerson said." (Tillerson outlines plan for long-term US military role in Syria," The Hill)

Tillerson's comments underscore the fact that recent setbacks in the seven-year-long conflict, have not dampened Washington's determination to topple the elected government of Syria and to impose its own political vision on the country. They also confirm that the United States intends to occupy parts of Syria for the foreseeable future. As the article clearly states:

"The secretary's remarks on Wednesday signaled his most explicit endorsement yet for long-term U.S. military presence in the country." (The Hill)

On Thursday, Tillerson backtracked from his earlier statement saying his comments had been "misportrayed."

"That entire situation has been misportrayed, misdescribed, (and) some people misspoke. We are not creating a border security force at all," (Tillerson said)

Regrettably, the media did not "misportray" Washington's intentions or policy. In fact, the details have been circulating since last weekend when an article appeared in The Defense Post announcing the creation of 30,000 man border security force. Here's an excerpt from the article:

"The U.S.-led Coalition against Islamic State is currently training a force to maintain security along the Syrian border as the operation against ISIS shifts focus. The 30,000-strong force will be partly composed of veteran fighters and operate under the leadership of the Syrian Democratic Forces, CJTF-OIR told The Defense Post.

"'The Coalition is working jointly with the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) to establish and train the new Syrian Border Security Force (BSF). Currently, there are approximately 230 individuals training in the BSF's inaugural class, with the goal of a final force size of approximately 30,000,' ...Public Affairs Officer Colonel Thomas F. Veale said.

"'The BSF will be stationed along the Euphrates River Valley -- marking the western edge of the territory within Syria currently controlled by SDF -- and the Iraqi and Turkish borders,' he said." (The Defense Post)

As we have noted before, Washington is determined to throw up an iron curtain along the Euphrates consistent with its plan to split Syria into smaller parts, support the central government's enemies, and create a safe haven for launching attacks on the government in Damascus. Seen in this light, the 30,000-man "border security force" is not a border security force at all, but a slick Madison Avenue-type sobriquet for Washington's proxy army of occupation.

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Mike is a freelance writer living in Washington state.

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