Wednesday, 24 April 2013

U.S. Increases Aid to Syrian Rebel Forces, Again

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After assertions from the Syrian rebels' key supporters that they will increase and expand their support to overthrow President Assad, the United States announced it will double its non-lethal assistance to the rebel forces.

But according to Yahoo News, despite the abundance of aid that the United States and other countries have provided to the rebels, the recent pledge still falls short of their demands. They insisted in a statement, “We appreciate the limited support given by the international community, but it is not sufficient.” The rebel group contends that it requires guns and ammunition, and even military intervention.

“The Syrian National Coalition had sought drone strikes on sites from which the regime has fired missiles, the imposition of no-fly zones and protected humanitarian corridors to ensure the safety of civilians,” writes Yahoo News.

The Obama administration has pledged to provide $123 million in aid to the rebel forces, which may include armored vehicles, body armor, and other defensive military supplies. That would bring the total U.S. help to $250 million.

Secretary of State John Kerry announced the pledge in a written statement and urged other foreign backers to make similar pledges. He also indicated that the United States would work with the Syrian opposition to determine how the money is spent, and added that Washington would also provide $25 million in additional food aid. He continued,

Today, it's safe to say that we are really at a critical moment. The stakes in Syria couldn't be more clear: Chemical weapons, the slaughter of people by ballistic missiles and other weapons of huge destruction. The potential of a whole country, a beautiful country with great people, being torn apart and perhaps breaking up into enclaves (with the) potential of sectarian violence which this region knows there is too much of.

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What we are trying to do is to avoid all of that. And we committed to — we recommitted — because we think there are some people who don't believe that we believe it, or are in fact are committed to it.

Kerry indicated that the National Coalition, the Syrian government's main opposition, pledged not to use chemical weapons, rejected “all forms of terrorism,” and insisted that any weapons it attains would be kept out of the wrong hands.

"We will guarantee that weapons will be used in accordance with the specific purpose that they were supplied for, and that these weapons will not fall in the wrong hands," it said. "These weapons and military equipment will be returned to the relevant and appropriate institutions upon the conclusion of the revolution."

But there are indications that the rebel forces are as dangerous as the regime they are attempting to overthrow.

Last month, for instance, the rebel fighters launched a chemical weapons attack in Syria’s Aleppo Province that targeted the Syrian military. An anonymous source told the U.K.'s Daily Telegraph that the military believes the rocket to have been fired from somewhere near Al-Bab, a district near Aleppo controlled by Jabhat al-Nusra, a jihadist group linked to al-Qaeda.

Last October, the rebel forces were responsible for four suicide bombings in Aleppo that killed approximately 40 civilians and wounded many more. The Daily Mail explained that the square targeted by the suicide bombings was in a government-controlled district in western Aleppo. According to the Mail, “Rebels have resorted to bomb attacks in areas still controlled by President Assad.”

Jebhat al-Nusra has said it is to blame for the bombings.

Additionally, the rebels were also responsible for the massacre of over 90 people in the Houla region of Syria last year. Immediately following that event, the United States, France, Great Britain, and Germany blamed Assad for the killings and expelled Syria’s ambassadors from their countries in protest. Later reports, however, pointed to evidence that the massacre was in fact carried out by anti-Assad rebel forces.

Likewise, an investigation published by the U.K.'s Guardian newspaper revealed that the American-backed Syrian opposition has been linked to such world-government-promoting groups as the Bilderberg Conference, the Council on Foreign Relations, and Goldman Sachs, as well as billionaire globalist George Soros.

The New American’s Alex Newman wrote:

The report suggests that much of the war propaganda being used to promote international military intervention and “revolution” is actually slick public-relations gimmicks financed by large tax-exempt foundations and even the governments being asked to intervene. And there is big money behind the spread of the disinformation. Consider the seemingly never-ending reports about “civilian massacres” blamed on the Syrian tyrant — almost always from anonymous “activists” — that continually prove to be exaggerated, fabricated, or even perpetrated by the Western-backed rebels themselves, and then blamed on the regime.

Despite such reports, the Obama administration and several members of the U.S. Congress have continued to support the rebel forces and oppose the Assad regime. Some have even called for American military intervention.

Additionally, there are indications that some European nations are considering changes to an arms embargo that would permit weapons transfers to the Syrian opposition.