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New scandal threatens Obama, Hillary


New scandal threatens Obama, Hillary

Report confirms what well-placed sources have been  saying



TEL AVIV – Has the White House been misleading the public by repeatedly  denying it was coordinating arms shipments to the rebels in Syria, insurgents  known to consist in large part of al-Qaida and other jihadist groups?

Other top U.S. officials and former officials, including former Secretary of  State Hillary Clinton, have implied in congressional testimony that they didn’t  know about any U.S. involvement in procuring weapons for the rebels.


Now, a starkly different picture is emerging, one that threatens the  longstanding White House narrative that claims the Obama administration has only  supplied nonlethal aid to the rebels.

Confirming WND’s exclusive reporting for over a year, the  New York Times two days ago reported that since early 2012, the CIA has been  aiding Arab governments and Turkey in obtaining and shipping weapons to the  Syrian rebels.

While the Times report claims most of the weapons shipments facilitated by  the CIA began after the latest presidential election, Middle Eastern security  officials speaking to WND have said U.S.-aided weapons shipments go back more  than a year, escalating before the Sept. 11, 2012, attack on the U.S. facilities  in Benghazi.

Aaron  Klein’s New York Times bestseller, “Fool Me Twice,” is more relevant than  ever.

In fact, the Middle Eastern security officials speaking to WND since last  year describe the U.S. mission in Benghazi and nearby CIA annex attacked last  September as an intelligence and planning center for U.S. aid to the rebels in  the Middle East, particularly those fighting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s  regime.

The aid, the sources stated, included weapons shipments and was being  coordinated with Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

Recruiting jihadists

Days after the Benghazi attack that killed U.S. Ambassador Christopher  Stevens, WND  broke the story that Stevens himself played a central role in recruiting  jihadists to fight Assad’s regime in Syria, according to Egyptian and other  Middle Eastern security officials.

Stevens served as a key contact with the Saudis to coordinate the recruitment  by Saudi Arabia of Islamic fighters from North Africa and Libya. The jihadists  were sent to Syria via Turkey to attack Assad’s forces, said the security  officials.

The officials said Stevens also worked with the Saudis to send names of  potential jihadi recruits to U.S. security organizations for review. Names found  to be directly involved in previous attacks against the U.S., including in Iraq  and Afghanistan, were ultimately not recruited by the Saudis to fight in Syria,  said the officials.

Now the New York Times has bolstered WND’s reporting, citing air traffic  data, interviews with officials in several countries and the accounts of rebel  commanders describing how the CIA has been working with Arab governments and  Turkey to sharply increase arms shipments to Syrian rebels in recent months.

The Times reported that the weapons airlifts began on a small scale in early  2012 and continued intermittently through last fall, expanding into a steady and  much heavier flow late last year, the data shows.

The Times further revealed that from offices at “secret locations,” American  intelligence officers have helped the Arab governments shop for weapons,  including a large procurement from Croatia. They have vetted rebel commanders  and groups to determine who should receive the weapons as they arrive.

The CIA declined to comment to the Times on the shipments or its role in  them.

The Times quoted a former American official as saying that David H. Petraeus,  the C.I.A. director until November, had been instrumental in helping set up an  aviation network to fly in the weapons. The paper said Petraeus had prodded  various countries to work together on the plan.

Petraeus did not return multiple emails from the Times asking for  comment.

Both WND’s reporting, which first revealed the U.S.-coordinated arms  shipments, and the Times reporting starkly contrast with statements from top  U.S. officials who have denied aiding the supply of weapons to the rebels.

Last month, the White House flatly denied involvement in arming the Syrian  rebels, going so far as to say the Obama administration rejected a plan by  former Secretary of State Clinton and then-CIA Director Petraeus to help arm the  rebels.

Nobody has ever raised that with me’

Further, in testimony during the Benghazi hearings, Clinton  claimed she did not know whether the U.S. was aiding Turkey and other Arab  countries in procuring weapons.

The exchange on the subject took place with Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky.

Paul asked Clinton: “Is the U. S. involved with any procuring of weapons,  transfer of weapons, buying, selling, anyhow transferring weapons to Turkey out  of Libya?”

“To Turkey?” Clinton asked. “I will have to take that question for the  record. Nobody has ever raised that with me.”

Continued Paul: “It’s been in news reports that ships have been leaving from  Libya and that may have weapons, and what I’d like to know is the annex that was  close by, were they involved with procuring, buying, selling, obtaining weapons,  and were any of these weapons being transferred to other countries, any  countries, Turkey included?”

Clinton replied, “Well, Senator, you’ll have to direct that question to the  agency that ran the annex. I will see what information is available.”

“You’re saying you don’t know?” asked Paul.

“I do not know,” Clinton said. “I don’t have any information on that.”

In testimony last month, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., asked then-Defense  Secretary John Panetta and Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of  Staff, whether they had supported a plan “that we provide weapons to the  resistance in Syria.”

“We do,” Panetta replied.

“You did support that?” McCain asked again.

“We did,” added Dempsey, who was sitting next to Panetta.

Neither Dempsey nor Panetta elaborated on their positions or commented on any  actual arms shipments.

Rebel training

This is not the first time WND’s original investigative reporting on U.S.  support for the Syrian rebels was later confirmed by reporting in major media  outlets. Other WND reporting indicates support for the Syrian rebels that goes  beyond supplying arms, painting a larger picture of U.S. involvement in the  Middle East revolutions.

A story generating worldwide attention by the German weekly Der Spiegel  earlier this month reporting the U.S. is training Syrian rebels in Jordan was  exclusively exposed  by WND 13 months ago.

Quoting what it said were training participants and organizers, Der Spiegel  reported it was not clear whether the Americans worked for private firms or were  with the U.S. Army, but the magazine said some organizers wore uniforms.

The training in Jordan reportedly focused on use of anti-tank weaponry.

The German magazine reported some 200 men received the training over the past  three months amid U.S. plans to train a total of 1,200 members of the Free  Syrian Army in two camps in the south and the east of Jordan.

Britain’s Guardian newspaper also reported U.S. trainers were aiding Syrian  rebels in Jordan along with British and French instructors.

Reuters reported a spokesman for the U.S. Defense Department declined  immediate comment on the Der Spiegel report. The French foreign ministry and  Britain’s foreign and defense ministries also would not comment to Reuters.

While Der Spiegel quoted sources discussing training of the rebels in Jordan  over the last three months, WND  was first to report the training as far back as February 2012.

At the time, WND quoted knowledgeable Egyptian and Arab security officials  claimed the U.S., Turkey and Jordan were running a training base for the Syrian  rebels in the Jordanian town of Safawi in the country’s northern desert  region.

Any training or arming of the Syrian rebels would be considered highly  controversial. A major issue is the inclusion of jihadists, including al-Qaida,  among the ranks of the Free Syrian Army and other Syrian opposition  groups.

Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2013/03/new-scandal-threatens-obama-hillary/#HRA5gGX8MZePyHh8.99

Entry #517


sully16Comment by sully16 - April 25, 2013, 8:03 am

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