The Pentagon has put together a plan to equip and train “moderate” Syrian rebel forces. The move would mark the first instance of the American military having direct contact with the opposition.Information regarding the new plan was relayed by two Obama administration officials to CNN. The idea has allegedly been under consideration since the first evidence emerged of a massive chemical weapons attack outside Damascus on August 21. The US maintains the attack was carried out by Assad’s government. Though the two officials did not cite many specifics on the proposal, the effort would involve training that would take place in a country near Syria. However, weapons would not be directly supplied as the Pentagon has no authority to do so.”We have any number of options under development that could expand our support to the moderate opposition, but no decision has been taken at this point,” Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Martin Dempsey told reporters on Wednesday.The Pentagon’s plan would involve US troops training selected rebels on the use of small arms, along with command and control and other military tactics. “The path to the resolution of the Syrian conflict is through a developed capable moderate opposition, and we know how to do that,” Dempsey said at a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing earlier this month.
- Pentagon proposes training for Syrian rebels (fox43.com)
- Pentagon proposes plan to equip and train ‘moderate’ Syrian rebels (EndtheLie.com)
- Pentagon proposes training moderate Syrian rebels (security.blogs.cnn.com)
- Washington Wants to Train Syria’s ‘Moderate’ Rebels (world.time.com)
- Pentagon Proposes Training Syrian Rebels (news.antiwar.com)