Syrian rebels say Americans, Britons helped train them in Jordan

Syrian rebels say Americans, Britons helped train them in Jordan

McClatchy

Rebel forces end months-long truce in Al TalA rebel fighter gives a victory cry after capturing a government position in Al Tal, Syria | Austin Tice/MCT

 

By David Enders | McClatchy Newspapers

AMMAN, Jordan — Weeks before the Obama administration and other Western nations recognized a new Syrian opposition coalition as “the legitimate representative” of the Syrian people, Syrian rebels were receiving training in the use of light and heavy weapons with the backing of the Jordanian, British and U.S. governments, participants in the training have told McClatchy.

The training took place as far back as October and involved hundreds of rebels, the participants said. In one case, the rebel participant said men he believed were American intelligence officers observed what was taking place. Another said he believed British officers were helping to organize the training. The training itself was handled by Jordanian military officers, the rebels said.

“We hoped there would be more training on larger weapons,” said Kamal al Zoubani, a fighter from the southern Syrian city of Daraa, which often is referred to as the birthplace of the uprising against President Bashar Assad, which began nearly 22 months ago. “But we were allowed to take light weapons back to Syria with us.”

By November, another rebel said, the training had expanded to anti-tank weapons and Stinger anti-aircraft missiles.

American officials, citing concerns that they didn’t know the political leanings of anti-Assad groups, have said repeatedly that they aren’t providing weapons to the rebels, leaving that to countries such as Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

But there’s been little discussion of what role the United States might be playing in training rebel fighters, whose offensives against loyalist Assad forces have been gaining traction in recent months.

This week, the Obama administration recognized the Syrian National Coalition for Opposition and Revolutionary Forces as the likely successor to the Assad regime and urged countries to funnel aid through it for the rebels. In tandem with that decision, the administration labeled a key rebel group, the Nusra Front, whose fighters have been at the front lines of many recent rebel victories, an offshoot of al Qaida in Iraq in hopes that Qatar and Saudi Arabia would stop assisting it.

 

Zoubani said the rebel military council in Daraa, a group associated with the secular Free Syrian Army, had selected him to receive the training and that at least three groups of 50 to 60 fighters were trained at a military base in southern Jordan in October. He said he didn’t know why he’d been chosen as opposed to other rebels, only that leaders from the military council had contacted him and told him he’d receive the training.

He said uniformed Jordanian military officers were present at the training, as well as people he believed to be American intelligence officers.

The second fighter, who spoke only on the condition of anonymity because he was uncertain whether he was authorized to reveal details, said the training had progressed by November to include anti-tank and anti-aircraft weapons and that the office of Sheikh Mouaz al Khatib, the Syrian cleric who heads the Syrian National Coalition for Opposition and Revolutionary Forces, had selected fighters for the training. Khatib assumed his position Nov. 11, when the group was formed during meetings in Doha, Qatar.

The fighter said that more than 60 others had trained with him in an eight-day course at a military base near Amman. He said uniformed British and Jordanian military officers were present.

“They trained us to use LAU and Cobra anti-tank rockets and Stinger (anti-aircraft) missiles,” the fighter said.

The fighter said rebels also were trained to use anti-aircraft guns, which have been employed in past months to bring down Syrian government aircraft. The rebels have managed to buy and capture increasing numbers of anti-aircraft guns and have captured anti-aircraft missiles from Syrian government stocks. In November, video posted to YouTube appeared to confirm the first successful use of anti-aircraft rockets against government aircraft. Rebels claimed that the weapons used in that incident came from captured stocks.

 

Jordan, which has become home to more than 100,000 Syrian refugees since the conflict began, has taken pains to appear neutral.

On Wednesday, Jordanian officials seemed to be supportive of the anti-Assad rebellion as they helped dozens of Syrians living in a refugee camp here to sneak back into Syria. Still, rebels said the Jordanian government, which maintains tight control of its border, continued to prevent heavy weapons from being smuggled into Syria.

The revelations of training in Jordan come as the rebels have made a series of military advances against the Assad regime and signs point to an increasingly beleaguered government. U.S. intelligence officials claimed this week that the Syrian military had fired SCUD missiles for the first time in the conflict, a development that may signal that the military is running low on more traditional weaponry

Also, a Russian Foreign Ministry official acknowledged that a rebel victory is possible. The country has been a staunch supporter of Assad.

Enders is a McClatchy special correspondent. Email: denders@mcclatchydc.com; Twitter: @davidjenders

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French Claim That Taliban and Northern Alliance Reps. Will Attend Peace “Discussions” In Paris

France says Afghan officials to meet Taliban near Paris

Reuters

PARIS | Sun Dec 16, 2012

(Reuters) – France said on Sunday officials from the Afghan government, the Taliban rebel movement and other factions would meet this week near Paris to discuss the country’s future as NATO troops prepare to pull out in 2014.

Speaking on RFI radio, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, whose country withdrew the last of its combat troops from Afghanistan on Saturday, said Afghan President Hamid Karzai had given his green light to the meeting.

“Discreet talks have been taking place between different factions for three years,” Fabius said.

“If you want peace, it’s usually between people who don’t agree, and over there they don’t talk to each other. So there will be discussions, but it won’t be negotiations.”

Karzai’s government has failed to draw the Taliban into face-to-face-talks. The forthcoming event is the first time representatives from the Taliban, members of the Afghan High Peace Council and influential figures from the Northern Alliance who fought the Taliban for years are taking part.

A Taliban spokesman said there would only be speeches at the conference and there would be no political commitments and no negotiations would take place.

The officials are due to meet between Wednesday and Friday at a secret location to the north of Paris, which will be entirely closed off, said Camille Grand, director of the Foundation for Strategic Research, a think tank which is organizing the event.

“They have been invited on an individual basis,” he said. “The idea is to get them to talk freely and behind closed doors,” he told Reuters, adding that there would be 20 participants. He declined to name the individuals attending.

Fabius said France had no direct involvement in the process other than hosting it. Sources said French officials would be present.

Attacks by Taliban insurgents rose slightly during the main part of the Afghan fighting season this year as some U.S. forces withdrew and the transition to a lead role for Afghan security forces picked up pace, according to a Pentagon report released on December 10.

(Reporting By John Irish, Pauline Mevel and Hamid Shalizi; Editing by Stephen Powell)

Light-Skinned, Even Redheaded Terrorists, and their Western Equipment–from PNS Mehran To Peshawar Air Base

[SEE:  Tattooed Peshawar Air Base Terrorists Look and Dress Like PNS Mehran Terrorist-Fedayeen]

Inter Services Public Relations ISPR  Rawalpindi terrorist HQ

Pak Army HQ HQ

Mehran attacker.jpg2 

PNS MEHRAN

Minhas Air Base11 

MINHAS

Minhas Air Base3a 

MINHAS

Minhas Air Base2a 

MINHAS

 “For the attack on PNS Mehran in Karachi, the militants then had static preset coordinates set for the operation and communicated just via satellite phones; but during the recent attack on Kamra, the terrorists besides these had real-time GPS enabled touchpads fixed on their bodies, two BlackBerry smartphones (exact quantity could not be confirmed from secondary source), infrared devices, daggers inside pockets and more items which were not disclosed by sources for various reasons.”  

land warrior ensemble gps antenna

Ground Soldier Ensemble.”
Land Warrior program

SwitchBack

Universal Tactical Display

 

 

 

 

Attackers of Peshawar’s Bacha Khan Air Base Were Reported As Uzbeks, Just Like the Terrorists In PNS Mehran

Terrorists appeared to be Uzbek: ISPR

the news pak

RAWALPINDI: Military spokesman Major General Asim Bajwa said the three terrorists killed and two others who detonated their suicide vests during the Peshawar operation appeared to be Uzbek.

Speaking to Geo News, the spokesman said police was informed about the presence of terrorists in the Pawakai area at 7:30 am Sunday. The police reached the spot and were followed shortly by the army’s quick response force.

The spokesman also provided details of the attack at the Peshawar airport on Saturday night.

Major General Bajwa said the airport and PAF airbase was attacked by ten terrorists. The terrorists tried to enter from the western side and all three attempts were foiled.

Major General Bajwa added that terrorists were hiding in tribal areas and action was being taken against them.

The spokesman also praised the role of the security forces and the locals who provided information about the terrorists.

Tattooed Peshawar Air Base Terrorists Look and Dress Like PNS Mehran Terrorist-Fedayeen

PHOTOS OF DEAD TERRORIST ATTACKERS of BACHA KHAN AIR BASE  

(compared with one of the PNS MEHRAN terrorist-commandos)

Khuram Parvez Reuters

Photo By KHURAM PARVEZ/REUTERS).

A tattoo is seen on the back of a Taliban militant who was killed during a gun battle in Peshawar December 16, 2012

Boris Vallejo - Demons Hands 2  full moon

By Peruvian artist, Boris Vallejo–“Demon’s Hands” and “Full Moon” 

pakistani-security-forces-dead

This man has a tattoo of some sort on his left wrist

pakistani-security-forces-dead tattoo

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This guy looks like he got his outfit and shoes from the same supplier of the terrorists from the PNS Mehran attack.  Those guys were identified by the Pak Army as Uzbeks, the same as the Peshawar attackers, according to another unnamed official (SEE:  Terrorists appeared to be Uzbek: ISPR).   One of the Mehran attackers is included below, with a close-up of a tattoo on the back of his hand and possibly on his forearm, as well.

Mehran attacker.jpg4

PNS MEHRAN      

Mehran attacker.jpg2 

PNS MEHRAN

Iranian Press Reports Son of Prince Turki Guns Man Down In Riyadh, Rumors of Drunkenness

Drunken Saudi Prince Kills Young Man in Riyadh

Abna news

A drunk Saudi prince shot dead a young man in a park in the capital city of Riyadh on Friday.

Drunken Saudi Prince Kills Young Man in Riyadh

(Ahlul Bayt News Agency) – Turki bin Faisal Al Saud shot at a young man, named Adel al-Mohaimed, and his friend and killed al-Mohaimed, Iran’s Arabic-language news network, Al-Alam reported on Saturday.
The friend of the young man was seriously wounded in the shooting and sent to a nearby hospital.
Saudi activists have declared in the social networks that the Saudi prince was drunk at the time of shooting.
People are growingly discontent with the ruling regime. Since February 2011, protesters have held demonstrations on an almost regular basis to show their anger at the Saudi despots.
Saudi officials have intensified arrests of activists and opposition figures in the recent weeks in a move to crack down on popular protests across the country.
The Saudi demonstrators first called for the release of all political prisoners, freedom of expression and assembly and an end to widespread discrimination.
However, the demonstrations have turned into protests against the repressive Al Saud regime, especially since November 2011, when Saudi security forces killed five protesters and injured many others in the oil-rich region.
According to Human Rights Watch, the Saudi regime “routinely represses expression critical of the government”.