Monday, February 18, 2019

2013 - The Year The US Increased Arms Shipments To Terrorists In Syria

Brandon Turbeville
Activist Post
February 18, 2019

Despite the repeated demonstrations of the fact that the United States and other Western nations have armed, supported, and funded terrorists in Syria from the beginning of the crisis in 2011 as well as long before that crisis had taken shape, official pronouncements admitting to funding those terrorists made by Western governments and reported by mainstream media outlets should not be dismissed simply because their actions are now common knowledge. After all, these incidents generally involve much more important revelations than those admitted to by corporate media.

For example, a sizeable portion of terrorist funding was openly admitted and continued by the United States even though the atrocities committed by the terrorists who were receiving the money was well documented throughout the alternative media as well as a number of mainstream outlets.

One such program was dubbed Operation Timber Sycamore, a “secret” plan authorized by then US President Obama which allowed the CIA to arm terrorists in Syria. For more information, see my article, “Was Timber Sycamore The Program That Created ISIS?

But while Timber Sycamore and other related programs by the United States to arm terrorists have been covered in my and many other alt media outlets in the past, it is also important to note the scale at which those programs increased even as the Obama administration was claiming to hold back on “lethal” munitions to terrorist organizations.

For instance, in an article entitled “Arms Airlift to Syria Rebels Expands, With CIA Aid” and published in the New York Times on March 23, 2013, it was stated that,

With help from the C.I.A., Arab governments and Turkey have sharply increased their military aid to Syria’s opposition fighters in recent months, expanding a secret airlift of arms and equipment for the fighting against President Bashar al-Assad, according to air traffic data, interviews with officials in several countries and the accounts of rebel commanders.

The airlift, which began on a small scale in early 2012 and continued intermittently through last fall, expanded into a steady and much heavier flow late last year, the data shows. It has grown to include more than 160 military cargo flights by Jordanian, Saudi and Qatari military-style cargo planes landing at Esenboga Airport near Ankara, and, to a lesser degree, at other Turkish and Jordanian airports.

As it evolved, the airlift correlated with shifts in the war within Syria, as rebels drove Syria’s army from territory by the middle of last year. And even as the Obama administration has publicly refused to give more than “nonlethal” aid to the rebels, the involvement of the C.I.A. in the arms shipments - albeit mostly in a consultative role, American officials say - has shown that the United States is more willing to help its Arab allies support the lethal side of the Syrian unrest.

From offices at secret locations, American intelligence officers have helped the Arab governments shop for weapons, including a large procurement from Croatia, and have vetted rebel commanders and groups to determine who should receive the weapons as they arrive, according to American officials speaking on the condition of anonymity. The C.I.A. declined to comment on the shipments or its role in them.

The New York Times also revealed that American officials had confirmed that Senior White House officials were being regularly brief on the weapons and military equipment shipments. One former American official was quoted as saying that the size and degree of the shipments were large to say the least. “People hear the amounts flowing in, and it is huge, but they burn through a million rounds of ammo in two weeks.” he said.

On the same day, RT published a report entitled “CIA Aids Huge Arms Smuggling To Syria,” where more details were addressed. The report states,

The CIA reportedly has a hand in clandestine supply of arms to Syrian rebels by Gulf States. At least 3,500 tons of have been delivered - some ending up on the black market, with the Turkish government an active player, a media report says.

The flow of arms continues with the help of US agents as Washington criticizes Iran and Russia for delivering weapons to the Syrian regime, the New York Times says. Secretary of State John Kerry pressed Iraq on Sunday to close its airspace to Iranian flights just as the latest arms delivery from Qatar for Syrian rebels was landing in Turkey, according to the daily’s report.

The newspaper cites air traffic data, US and foreign officials and rebel commanders in its investigation.

The airlift reportedly began in early 2012 with a Qatari Emir Air Force C-130 transport aircraft flight. Saudi Arabia and Jordan have joined in in November, when it became a major operation. More than 160 military flights have landed in Turkey over the time. Esenboga Airport near Ankara was the prime destination, but others were also involved, the newspaper claims.

“A conservative estimate of the payload of these flights would be 3,500 tons of military equipment,” Hugh Griffiths, of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, told the newspaper. He added that it appears as a “well-planned and coordinated clandestine military logistics operation.”

Indeed, CIA agents have a direct input on the deliveries, albeit mostly consultative, NYT says. The spy agency reportedly helps with procurement of weapons in Croatia and vets Syrian rebel groups, which would receive the weapons.

The involvement was supposedly motivated by the fact that the Arab states would supply arms to the Syrian militants anyway. The hopes CIA its can steer away the arms from Islamists’ hands and prevent weapons which can potentially be used by terrorist against civilian targets from being delivered, a former US official told the newspaper.

The operation was a limited success apparently, NYT says, citing two Islamist commanders.

“There are fake Free Syrian Army brigades claiming to be revolutionaries, and when they get the weapons they sell them in trade,” Hassan Aboud of Soquor al-Sham told the newspaper.

The former official described the program as “a cataract of weaponry.” He said: “People hear the amounts flowing in, and it is huge, but they burn through a million rounds of ammo in two weeks.”

Instrumental to setting up the operation was David H. Petraeus, the CIA director until November, the official said. He had prodded various countries to work together on it.

The scale of the operation increased considerably in November, after the Turkish government agreed to it, the report says. The tipping point may also have been the presidential election in the United States.

Ankara reportedly has oversight over much of the program, down to affixing transponders to trucks ferrying the arms through Turkish territory and across the border. Some in Turkey say Ankara is de facto at war with Damascus because of its involvement in the conflict.

“The use of Turkish airspace at such a critical time, with the conflict in Syria across our borders, and by foreign planes from countries that are known to be central to the conflict, defines Turkey as a party in the conflict,” said Attilla Kart, a member of the Turkish Parliament from the CHP opposition party, who confirmed details about several Saudi shipments. “The government has the responsibility to respond to these claims.”

. . . . . .

The CIA and General Petraeus would not comment when contacted by the newspaper. Turkish and Saudi Arabian officials declined to discuss the arms flights. Croatia and Jordan both denied any role in supplying weapons to the Syrian rebels, NYT says. Jordanian aviation officials reportedly went so far as to insist that no cargo flights occurred, and cut communication after presented evidence to the contrary.
I highly recommend reading my articles , "The Roots Of ISIS," and “Was Timber Sycamore The Program That Created ISIS?” in order to understand the history of that group and just how much of a propaganda tool the "Islamic State" is and has been when it comes to geopolitics, Syria, and the "anti-terror" police state at home. At the very least, the above information demonstrates the hand the United States had in creating the most catastrophic humanitarian disaster in the 21st Century thus far.

Brandon Turbeville writes for Activist Post – article archive here – He is the author of seven books, Codex Alimentarius — The End of Health Freedom, 7 Real Conspiracies, Five Sense Solutions and Dispatches From a Dissident, volume 1 and volume 2, The Road to Damascus: The Anglo-American Assault on Syria, The Difference it Makes: 36 Reasons Why Hillary Clinton Should Never Be President, and Resisting The Empire: The Plan To Destroy Syria And How The Future Of The World Depends On The Outcome. Turbeville has published over 1000 articles on a wide variety of subjects including health, economics, government corruption, and civil liberties. Brandon Turbeville’s radio show Truth on The Tracks can be found every Monday night 9 pm EST at UCYTV. His website is He is available for radio and TV interviews. Please contact activistpost (at)

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Image credit: The Anti-Media

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