Officials with the US Department of Defense have confirmed that the Pentagon has finalized procedures that outline how American forces could soon combat the government of war-torn Syria and officially involve itself in that state’s bloody uprising.
After months of rumors suggesting that the US has unofficially made efforts to weaponize rebel forces fighting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, officials with the Defense Department tell CNN that the Pentagon has finished drafting blueprints that lay-out just how the US military could aid in ousting the leader with America’s own troops.
In their report, CNN cites Defense Department officials speaking on condition of anonymity; in a separate sit-down however, Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey confirms to the outlet that intensifying violence overseas in recent months has prompted the Pentagon to expedite establishing a role for US forces.
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 tells CNN this week.
“There is a sense that if the sectarian violence in Syria grows, it could be worse than what we saw in Iraq,” he adds.
Although the issue of involving US forces in the war against Assad’s regime has been on the table since the beginning of the uprising, authorities in Washington — off the record — have all but officially thrown their hat in the ring in regards to offering assistance. RT reported earlier this week that intelligence forces have revealed to Israel’s Debka news agency that the US was believed to be readying the establishing of a no-fly zone in Syria, and last month discussed murmurings that suggested US President Barack Obama had quietly approved a shipment of anti-tank weapons to Syrian rebels.
CNN’s report confirms that the military has indeed drafted instructions that lay-out the implementation of the no-fly zone. Additionally, officials say that a large number of US troops could soon be installed overseas to aid in the war.
As early as March of this year, lawmakers including John McCain (R-Arizona) began rallying together to ask Congress to consider authorizing strikes on Assad. Without the permission of the United Nations, though, the US has been hesitant to offer any formal assistance.
“NATO took military action to save Kosovo in 1999 without formal UN authorization. There is no reason why the Arab League, or NATO, or a leading coalition within the Friends of Syria contact group, or all of them speaking in unison, could not provide a similar international mandate for military measures to save Syria today,” Sen. McCain told Capitol Hill constituents earlier this year.