By Adel Karim*
A military base of the U.S.-led international coalition established in 2014 in Syria has already become a point of concern for most parties in the region. There is no doubt that the declared purpose of fighting against ISIS is far from being primary intention of the U.S. It is no secret either that the base serves to train anti-governmental military formations that actually haven’t succeeded in the fight against terrorism so far.
So-called moderate opposition groups are key tools of the Pentagon in its war against Assad regime in Syria. Americans supply militants with weapons and give them the ideological drive in order to make them fight for vague values.
It should be also noted that the Al-Tanf base was established without any approval from the UN. In fact such military presence is a violation of international law and a direct intervention in the domestic affairs of the country. A 55-kilometer zone unilaterally created by Americans around their military base gives them a significant control over the border area between Syria, Iraq and Jordan.
Even Jordanians who are considered to be allies of the U.S. express some concern over the American military base. According to the political expert Osama al-Sharif, a flare up in southern Syria ignited by Pentagon would have unpredictable results for all including Jordan. Amman fears a fresh influx of refugees, a possible infiltration by terror groups and an advance by pro-Iranian militias close to its borders.
Hussein al-Majali, a former Jordan’s Interior Minister, has similar views on the situation in the south of Syria. He pointed out that after recent missile strikes against Syria carried out by the USA, Britain and France the situation may evolve unpredictably and Jordan might face problems on its northern borders.
It is evident that al-Tanf military base and its unlawful, destabilizing activity delay peace settlement of Syrian crisis. Rebels who are trained there not only commit crimes against Syrian people but also create a number of problems for other countries in the region including one of Major non-NATO ally. Amman has already started distrusting the U.S. as their real intentions might be a threat to Jordan’s security.
Adel Karim is an independent journalist with a focus on Middle East issues.