Russia Has Destroyed the CIA's Arms Smuggling Operation in Syria
12 February, 2016
Let's cut to the chase: The closing of the Azaz corridor, a major supply artery for the "moderate rebels" in Syria, should be viewed as a crippling military defeat for the United States.
As analysts have pointed out, US Secretary of State John Kerry repeatedly implored Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov to keep the Azaz corridor open.
The New York Times now explains why Kerry was so anxious:
Mr. Kerry enters the negotiations with very little leverage: The Russians have cut off many of the pathways the C.I.A. has been using for a not-very-secret effort to arm rebel groups, according to several current and former officials. Mr. Kerry’s supporters inside the administration say he has been increasingly frustrated by the low level of American military activity, which he views as essential to bolstering his negotiation effort.
For at least the last three years, the CIA has been smuggling arms into Syria via Turkey and Jordan. Not anymore. The rebels are increasingly cut off from their arms suppliers -- and the US is now begging for peace.
This conflict is far from over, and despite reports of a tentative peace agreement, escalation still remains a very grim possibility.
But the US has been outplayed in Syria. Period. The CIA will have to go crawling back to Langley with its tail between its legs -- until it finds a new country to destabilize. Maybe Turkey?