Updates at Bottom
The U.S. military has completed its own planning for how American troops would conduct a variety of operations against Syria, or to assist neighboring countries in the event action was ordered, officials tell CNN.
The planning comes as the U.S. has become increasingly concerned that the violence in Syria is verging on civil war.(Is it? Or is this narrative politically feasible for launching an attack? I will address that in an update) Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said the recent series of bombings have heightened the worry.
Dempsey said it reminded him of the escalating violence during the Iraq war.
The violence "gives us all pause that have been in Iraq and seen how these issues become sectarian and then they become civil wars and then they become very difficult to resolve," Dempsey told CNN in an exclusive interview on Thursday.
A senior U.S. official said the developments have been a matter of discussion in the Obama administration.
"There is a sense that if the sectarian violence in Syria grows, it could be worse than what we saw in Iraq," the official said. (After the US destroyed Iraq and fomented the sectarian violence)
The military planning includes a scenario for a no-fly zone as well as protecting chemical and biological sites. Officials say all the scenarios would be difficult to enact and involve large numbers of U.S. troops and extended operations.
The U.S. Navy is maintaining a presence of three surface combatants and a submarine in the eastern Mediterranean to conduct electronic surveillance and reconnaissance on the Syrian regime, a senior Pentagon official said. The official emphasized that the U.S. routinely maintains this type of naval presence in the eastern Mediterranean, but acknowledged the current focus is on Syria.
The United States, Britain and France have all been discussing contingency scenarios, potential training and sharing of intelligence about what is happening in Syria with neighboring countries including Jordan, Turkey and Israel.
The U.S. has been training in Jordan using mainly special operations forces under a program called Joint Combined Exchange Training, which sends troops overseas to train foreign soldiers and units in specific missions.
Flashback: I covered that months ago! In fact just over 6 months ago in a post dated December 13/201. Syria: The beat goes on Part 3
The paragraph from the article linked in that piece was the clue something was afoot:
USSF Soldiers were in Jordan as part of a Joint Combined Exchange Training exercise, or JCET, with Jordanian forces. These types of exercises are designed to provide training opportunities for American Special Forces in countries that the forces may one day have to operate in, as well as providing training opportunities for the armed forces of the host country.Back to the CNN article:
While there's no formal agreement, one of the U.S. officials said the U.S. would come to the defense and support of Jordan in the event any of the Syria scenarios pose a challenge.
While there is no current scenario for putting U.S. troops on the ground in Jordan or Syria, the U.S. could wind up providing air support to move Jordanian troops to the border.
US troops are already present in Jordan. They have almost certainly been operating as agents of destabilization in Syria. So the above claim of "no current scenario" is nonsense.
I was just thinking to myself "If I read one more article that spins Israel is not happy about what is going on in Syria" I will scream!
Israel is very happy. Israel is jumping for joy. Israel is going to benefit big time, in so many ways.
Water. Land. Power. Israel is positively drooling over the prospect of the destruction of Syria.
Of course I am referring to the government. The populace may be a bit concerned.
Then SAJ left this timely link. Thanks SAJ.
Check back for updates!
Update # 1-
I mentioned the "civil war" angle. What does it matter?
Civil War Designation for Syria Would Trigger Humanitarian Protections
But what changes if the world deems the 15-month-old conflict a civil war?Also:
Georgetown University Law Center adjunct professor Gary Solis says a civil war designation would trigger the Geneva Conventions on conducting war, specifically protections in Common Article 3. "And Common Article 3 provides basic protections for those who are out of the combat, for example, soldiers who have surrendered or who have been wounded and are captured; for civilians; for any non-combatants. Common Article 3 provides basic protections and that is why it is so important.
And so to say there is a civil war suggests that Common Article 3 now applies and that is significant of course for the victims of the civil war," said Solis. But Solis adds a very important caveat. "The problem, however, is that there is no supra-national body, including the U.N., that can say with authority, 'all right this is a civil war; this is not a civil war.'
There is no international body which can give a binding opinion that this is indeed a civil war," Solis explained.
Russia Sending Air and Sea Defenses to Syria (allegedly)
Don't know what to make of this after the Hillary whirlybird fabrication?
“I would like to say these mechanisms are really a good means of defense, a reliable defense against attacks from the air or sea,” Anatoly P. Isaykin, the general director of the company, Rosoboronexport, said Friday in an interview. “This is not a threat, but whoever is planning an attack should think about this.”
Mr. Isaykin, a powerful figure in Russia’s military industry, openly discussed the weapons now being shipped to Syria: the Pantsyr-S1, a radar-guided missile and artillery system capable of hitting warplanes at altitudes well above those typically flown during bombing sorties, and up to 12 miles away; Buk-M2 antiaircraft missiles, capable of striking airplanes at even higher altitudes, up to 82,000 feet, and at longer ranges; and land-based Bastion antiship missiles that can fire at targets 180 miles from the coast.