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Tuesday, February 13, 2018

US Forces Kill 100 Russian Fighters In Syria



Things are getting serious.

U.S. forces killed scores of Russian mercenaries in Syria last week, reports Bloomberg.

More than 200 contract soldiers, mostly Russians fighting on behalf of Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad, died in a failed attack on a base held by U.S. and mainly Kurdish forces in the oil-rich Deir Ezzor region.

A U.S. official put the death toll at about 100, with 200 to 300 injured.

According to Bloomberg, the Russian assault may have been a rogue operation, underscoring the complexity of a conflict that started as a domestic crackdown only to morph into a proxy war involving Islamic extremists, stateless Kurds and regional powers Iran, Turkey and now Israel. Russia’s military said it had nothing to do with the attack and the U.S. accepted the claim. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis called the whole thing “perplexing.”

Asked about the killing of Russian mercenaries in Syria, CIA Director Mike Pompeo told a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing in Washington Tuesday that he would leave specifics to the Pentagon but “we have seen in multiple instances foreign forces using mercenaries in battles that will begin to approach the United States.”

The U.S. needs to pull out of the Middle East now.

Russia’s Defense Ministry in a statement accused the U.S. of using its “illegal presence” in Syria as an excuse to “seize economic assets,” even as it kept lines of communication with the U.S. open.

-RW


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