It’s no accident that US-supplied weapons made it into the hands of ISIS, says antiwar activist Cindy Sheehan. She places blame squarely at the feet of Obama’s CIA. “The CIA wanted the weapons to get into the hands of the extremists,” she declares. Sheehan thinks it was part of Obama’s plan to destabilize the Middle East and control resources.
International arms monitor, Conflict Armament Research (CAR), examined 40,000 recovered weapons left behind by retreating ISIS troops since 2014. In a report described as “the most comprehensive to date about how the Islamic State obtained and fielded its weapons,” they note that one batch of US military weapons covertly supplied to extremist Syrian rebels were being used by ISIS only two months after delivery.
According to Sheehan, it isn’t likely that ISIS outsmarted U.S. intelligence. “I think it is incorrect to assume that the CIA/US is losing control of its weapons.” It seems much more likely that “Washington and the CIA wanted the Daesh forces in Syria to have control of many U.S. supplied heavy weapons, including missiles.”
It wouldn’t be the first time America pulled a scheme like that. Sheehan points out, referring to Oliver North’s operation to fund the Nicaraguan Contra rebels in their fight against the Socialist Sandinistas holding power. “Back in the 1980’s the U.S. Congress made it illegal for the United States to fund the Contras in Nicaragua but the CIA got around that by selling weapons to Iran and using the money to fund the Contras,” she relates.
Conflict Armament Research has had field investigators combing the battlefields across everywhere ISIS-held a position in Iraq and Syria since 2014. Tagging along with government and local fighting forces they study every piece of the ordinance they can locate.
Weapons, ammunition, even chemicals used to make explosives are all sifted through and cataloged. The findings they just released show that often, weapons shipped to local groups have the unexpected result of benefiting the enemy. “The unauthorized transfer of munitions that were originally intended to benefit groups fighting in an already chaotic and violent environment eventually found their way to ISIS.”
Obama’s covert operation worked to “arm moderate Syrian rebels battling President Bashar al-Assad.” Some of those arms included rockets that were recovered in Iraq, paid for by the United States and then shipped to Syrian groups. “In one instance, PG-9 73mm rockets, sold by Romanian arms manufacturers to the U.S. Army in 2013 and 2014, were found sprinkled across both battlefields. Containers with matching lot numbers were found in eastern Syria and recovered from an Islamic State convoy in the Iraqi city of Fallujah,” the report states.
Another reason Obama may have been so keen to help Assad is to misdirect some attention away from the Iran nuclear deal. More evidence is surfacing that Obama had a “habit of looking the other way when it comes to Syria, Iran, and groups like Hezbollah.” Congressional Republicans are taking a hard look at the possibility now, along with checking into Hezbollah money-laundering and drug running. The DEA also looked the other way when Hezbollah got caught sneaking cocaine into the U.S.
One of the most noteworthy findings in the report highlights how quickly the U.S. supplied weapons can make their way into the hands of the enemy. “On Dec. 12, 2015, Bulgaria exported antitank missile launcher tubes to the U.S. Army through an Indiana-based company called Kiesler Police Supply. Fifty-nine days later, Iraqi federal police captured the remains of one such weapon after a battle in Ramadi, Iraq.” In a related case, “a U.S.-backed rebel group in Syria was photographed using a launcher tube with an identical lot number, indicating it probably came from the same batch.”
Damien Spleeters, CAR’s top field investigator, is especially concerned about how advanced ISIS was at producing their own component parts and recharging munitions. Finding precursor chemicals like aluminum paste required for rocket and mortar fuel all across Iraq leads him to believe they were geared up for mass production. “It confirms my theory that this is the industrial revolution of terrorism,” Spleeters insists.
James Bevan, CAR’s executive director explains, “Time and again, states that seek to accomplish short-term political objectives supply weapons to groups over whom they exert little to no control. These weapons often gravitate to the most organized and effective rebel and insurgent forces.”
President Trump has already promised that the United States will cut back substantially on the heavy weapons passed out to Syrian freedom fighters, especially now that the tide has been turned and ISIS is on the run in the region, one senior official told reporters on Monday.