Tehran, Iran (Tasnim) – A California-based political analyst denounced a recent move by Washington to send additional forces to Syria to allegedly accelerate the defeat of the foreign-backed Daesh (ISIL or ISIS) terrorist group, saying the deployment will “worsen the situation” in the Arab country.
“This is a very negative development indicating the US has not given up its goal of regime change or prolonging the conflict,” Rick Sterling from San Francisco Bay said in an interview with the Tasnim News Agency.
“The addition of US troops complicates and worsens the situation,” the analyst said, adding, “The best thing the US could do would be to stop violating Syrian territorial sovereignty and stop providing weapons to the terrorists.”
Sterling is a retired aerospace engineer who now writes about international issues. As a member of the Syria Solidarity Movement and a prominent analyst, his works and interviews have appeared in media outlets around the world.
Tasnim: As you know, since 2014, the United States, along with a number of its allies, has been leading an anti-terror campaign in Syria and neighboring Iraq. Reports suggest that the campaign has fallen well short of eliminating the terrorists, raising questions as to the nature of the coalition’s military engagement. Recently, the US-led coalition against Daesh (ISIL or ISIS) said additional US forces had been deployed to Syria to accelerate the defeat of the foreign-backed terrorist group in its Syrian base of operations at Raqqa city. What is your take on the move without Damascus consent? What is behind this decision?
Sterling: This is a very negative development indicating the US has not given up its goal of regime change or prolonging the conflict. There seems to be an element of US collusion with ISIS:
– In August 2012, the Defense Intelligence Agency analysis spoke positively of the possibility of an Islamic caliphate in eastern Syria and western Iraq.
– The collapse of the Iraqi Army in Mosul in June 2014, one week after the successful Syrian Presidential election, was far too easy and looks suspicious.
– In September 2016, the US air coalition attacked SAA soldiers, killing up to 100 Syrian soldiers. With the above evidence it’s clear the US has not been an ally in the fight. against terrorism.
Tasnim: During his joint address to Congress on February 28, 2017, President Donald Trump declared, “As promised, I directed the Department of Defense to develop a plan to demolish and destroy ISIS…”. Do not you believe that more US troops in the crisis-hit Arab country will worsen the situation there given the fact that the Syrian Army has made major advances in its fight against the terrorists?
Sterling: Yes, the addition of US troops complicates and worsens the situation. The best thing the US could do would be to stop violating Syrian territorial sovereignty and stop providing weapons to the terrorists. That would allow the Syrian government and allies to focus on fighting the terrorists.
Tasnim: Do you believe that Trump like Obama is sacrificing American blood and treasure in foreign wars in the name of fighting terrorism?
Sterling: During the campaign Donald Trump said he was against ‘regime change’ foreign policy and that he wanted to work with Russia to defeat ISIS. Now that he is in office, we are waiting to see whether there will be a real change in policy. His hostility to Iran and his friendliness to Israel suggest that Trump may betray his campaign promise and resume or even escalate the US efforts to weaken and divide Syria. Sending more ground troops into Syria is a serious and dangerous step in the wrong direction. If continued, it will be like the US wars of the past 50 years: good for the military industrial complex, bad for the American people and especially bad for the people of the region under attack. Going against this, there is the prospect that the Syrian Arab Army with Lebanese, Iranian and Russian allies may be able to end the conflict and prevent a prolonged disaster.
This post originally ran on Tasnim News Agency.