French newspaper Le Figaro reported on Thursday that U.S. special operations and CIA teams, along with Israeli and Jordanian forces, have entered Syria, where they’re commanding members of the rebellion.
“According to our information,” the French paper reports, “the regime’s opponents, supervised by Jordanian, Israeli and American commandos moving towards Damascus since mid-August.”
There are reports that U.S. and Jordanian teams have set up a training camp in Jordan where special operations teams are training members of the Syrian rebel groups in special forces tactics.
An article from Israeli newspaper DEBKAfile yesterday states that up to 250 of these specially trained rebels, commanded by American forces, entered the area of Syria near the Israeli border this past Saturday and were joined by an additional 300 on Monday.
The presence of these rebels has allegedly resulted in a retreat of Syrian forces from the area.
“Operational logic first,” Le Figaro continues. “According to information obtained by Le Figaro, the first trained in guerrilla warfare by the Americans in Jordan Syrian troops reportedly entered into action since mid-August in southern Syria, in the region of Deraa. A first group of 300 men, probably supported by Israeli and Jordanian commandos, as well as men of the CIA, had crossed the border on August 17. A second would have joined the 19. According to military sources, the Americans, who do not want to put troops on the Syrian soil or arming rebels in part controlled by radical Islamists form quietly for several months in a training camp set up at the border Jordanian- Syrian fighters ASL, the Free Syrian Army, handpicked.”
While Thursday’s report has yet to be confirmed, it follows yesterday’s report of a chemical weapon used by the forces of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Some, however, remain skeptical that Assad launched such an attack.
The government of Russia, which is allied with the Assad regime, has stated that it believes that the attack was conducted by the Syrian rebels.
“All of this really looks like an attempt, at any cost, to create a reason to produce demands for the U.N. Security Council to side with the regime’s opponents and undermine the chances of convening the Geneva conference,” said Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevi.
The Syrian government has claimed that the chemical attack was fabricated.
Independent analysts have also expressed doubt about the attack.
Weapons and chemical explosives expert Stephen Johnson of the Cranfield Forensic Institute told Euro News that footage of the aftermath of the alleged chemical attack, including people foaming at the mouth, looks suspicious.
“There are, within some of the videos, examples which seem a little hyper-real, and almost as if they’ve been set up. Which is not to say that they are fake but it does cause some concern. Some of the people with foaming, the foam seems to be too white, too pure, and not consistent with the sort of internal injury you might expect to see, which you’d expect to be bloodier or yellower,” Johnson said.