While the Obama administration continues to tell the American public, there will be no need for "boots on the ground" a Congressional Research Service report (CRS) says otherwise.
The Pentagon has known since 2012, that in order to secure Syrian chemical weapons ground troops would be needed, should Assad be deposed.
The CRS report says on page five the following:
In testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee on March 7, 2012, then-Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta said:
“It’s 100 times worse than what we dealt with in Libya. And for that reason, that’s why it’s raised even greater concerns about our ability to address how we can secure those sites.” The Pentagon has estimated that it would take over 75,000 troops to neutralize the chemical weapons."
In a worst-case scenario if Assad's regime falls it will take tens of thousands of combat troops to secure Syria's chemical and biological weapons.
Reuters reported there have been secret discussions taking place. The speculation in these meetings assume that all of Assad's security forces might disintegrate. This would leave stockpiles of chemical and biological wepons in Syria ripe for pillaging.
A U.S. official anonymously tried to explain the secret discussions to Reuters. According to this person the U.S. had no immediate plans to put troops inside of Syria. The Pentagon had no plan in the works to enforce a no-fly zone anytime soon either.
The official also said: "There is not a imminent plan to deploy ground forces. This is, in fact, a worst-case scenario. He added that "U.S. forces would likely play a role in such a mission."
Reuters also said in their report: "Two diplomatic sources, spoke on condition of anonymity, said as many as 50,000 or 60,000 ground forces may be needed if officials' worst fears are realized, plus additional support forces."
A U.S. contingency of that size more than likely would not be enough to secure and hold chemical or biological weapons facilities. A force that size would not even be sufficient for peace-keeping efforts in Syria if Assad's regime is toppled.
Chemical and biological weapons falling into the hands of the al-Qaeda militants in Syria will not be a good scenario. Logic dictates if these terrorists get their hands on chemical or biological weapons, they will use them against innocent civilians. Many lives will be lost as a result.
Due to the fears of the world the U.S. is poised to respond to the alleged chemical weapons use by Assad. Yesterday those fears prompted the Foreign Relations Committee (FRC) to pass a resolution allowing the Obama administration to launch limited strikes against Syria.
The authority granted in section two, of the resolution, doesn't authorize "boots on the ground" inside of Syria for combat operations. "The use of United States Armed Forces on the ground in Syria for the purpose of combat operations," says the text of the draft resolution.
However, the resolution does give the president the authority to use our troops in Syria when he determines it's necessary and appropriate for a limited set of purposes. Those include "to protect our allies and partners against weapons of mass destruction use."
The CRS report makes it clear that while Kerry, Obama and the Pentagon might be saying no "boots on the ground," they know troops will be needed to secure Syrian chemical weapons sites. They are plainly misleading the American public. According to Constitutional scholars the resolution is riddled with loopholes. Obviously one big enough that you could push 75,000 troops through it.
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