Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
September 17, 2016

U.S., Israel Launch Airstrikes On Syrian Government Forces - Directly Supporting ISIS And Al-Qaeda

The U.S.

  • refuses to publish the details of the agreement with Russia about the ceasefire  in Syria
  • has done nothing over the last days to separate, as promised, the "moderate rebels" it supports in Syria from al-Qaeda
  • today bombed a Syrian army position in support of an Islamic State attack in Deir Ezzor.

Details of the last attack:

"Today at 17:00-17:50 Moscow time, international anti-Daesh coalition (two F-16 and two A-10 jets) carried out four strikes on Syrian government forces' units encirled by Daesh near Deir ez-Zor airport. The coalition's aircraft entered Syrian airspace from the side of the Iraqi border," Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said.
As a result of the attack, 62 Syrian soldiers were killed and some 100 others were injured, according to information received from the Syrian command in Deir ez-Zor, he said.

The Russian Defense Ministry said that Daesh terrorists launched an offensive soon after the US-led coalition aircraft attacked the Syrian government forces.

The death toll is likely to increase.

Earlier today the Syrian Arab Army had announced that 1,000 fresh soldiers arrived in Deir Ezzor to liberate it from ISIS.

The U.S. planes came from Erbil in the Kurdish separatist region of Iraq.

The Syrian troops were holding positions on Jabal Tharda, a mountain that overlooks Deir Ezzor's airport. The mountain is now fully under Islamic State control. With this IS has firecontrol over the airport and the Deir Ezzor garrison as well as more than 150,000 civilians living under government protection are thereby cut off from supplies and any further reinforcements. Government forces have launched a counterattack to regain the vital position.

At the same time the Israeli air force attacked Syrian positions in the Golan height after al-Qaeda lobbed a mortar towards Israeli forces signaling the need for support. This has become the official format of Israeli support for al-Qaeda in the area with Israel claiming that the Syrian army is responsible for any and all attacks from the Syrian side no matter who initiates them.

Intense attacks from inside the surrounded, al-Qaeda occupied east-Aleppo on Syrian government positions were launched in the late afternoon local time. Fighting there is ongoing.

Earlier today artillery fire from Turkey hit Syrian army positions in Latakia.

The U.S. air attack on Deir Ezzor was certainly not a mistake but well planed.

It is a signal to Russia and Syria. I am not sure though what lunacy it is supposed to convey.

Posted by b on September 17, 2016 at 18:43 UTC | Permalink

next page »

What has happened to the vaunted AA weapons that Russia has deployed in Syria.

Posted by: Andoheb | Sep 17 2016 18:53 utc | 1

Goddammit. Well, I guess something new has been added to the equation.

Posted by: Kuma | Sep 17 2016 18:53 utc | 2

@1 It was sent there to protect Russian no Syrians.

I think the message is clear the US and Turkey are moving ahead with the partitioning of Syria. The CoH was just another scam by the US to rearm terrorists.

Posted by: BraveNewWorld | Sep 17 2016 18:59 utc | 3

Seems to me like the last gasp of an overstretched empire unable to admit plan A (or B) worked. I know it would be way too much to expect them to bow out 'gracefully' as the SAA makes up all this ground as of late and tears into their proxy forces... but at the same time this kind of stake raising is just so patently insane i cannot fathom who cooked this up. Very dangerous game they're playing. Thank god Russia and her allies aren't so hungry for war and are unwilling to draw lines that they know the West will trample over, it prevents them from being backed into a corner (and thats when the real horror lies in my eyes).

It's too bad alternative media has so little readership in the West. This kind of strategy reflects awful poorly on the coalition countries. Though maybe the population would cheer it on regardless and this is just wishful thinking on my part.

Posted by: FecklessLeft | Sep 17 2016 19:02 utc | 4

thanks b.. jesus fuck... usa-israel and their support for isis defy logic and everything else they have done for however long.... waiting for the next shoe to drop...

Posted by: james | Sep 17 2016 19:10 utc | 5

Before I go visit my dad, I'd just like to say it again - RIP Syria!!
I hope Iran has mass evacuation plans drawn up for Damascus and Lebanon. MAYBE the future Chinese and Russian naval bases in formerly-known-as-Syria will allow them a safe point of departure

Posted by: bbbb | Sep 17 2016 19:13 utc | 6

Kerry and Obama have no control over the military and the US press, who would not normally go anywhere near something this sensitive, reported on it immediately. They are also clearly on the side of the rogue defense department. What is the goal?

Posted by: RC | Sep 17 2016 19:25 utc | 7

I remember reading about Prince Bandar's private army training in Jordan. Then, ISIL/S shows up with spiffy Toyota trucks, all the weapons they could dream of and great social media. We built this army, well our 'friends' built it. So, of course we're going to use it. Saudi, Turkey and Israel are all in and we are right there, too. My only question is - is this where Russia, China, Iran, North Korea, ?, draw the line or will that wait for the inevitable in the South China Sea. The funny thing about war is that there are really no rules, so they don't have to let us know when the first punch/stab is coming. We seem to assume that we'll have the luxury of ramping this up on our timetable, but maybe not. Who was that Chinese guy, oh yeah, got his little book right here. And, the whole planet is the playing field. I hope to enjoy the bravery of being out of range, but it might not be my choice to make.

Posted by: coboarts | Sep 17 2016 19:26 utc | 8

….Oops we are so sorry, thought this position was a hospital…and that thingy called humanitarian access.

The Russians know USA is not a reliable partner. Yes, it’s time to set aside all diplomatic niceties. Just go ahead and Do It:

Moscow insists on publishing agreements on Syria to assess their implementation

"We hope the US will stop shying away from publication of the documents it undersigned and the whole world will learn then about obligations of the sides under these documents and will be able to give unbiased assessments to how each side fulfills the agreements," she said.

As she commented on a statement by the US Department after a telephone conversation between State Secretary John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, she said this was not the first time that the US came up with an interpretation of a document endorsed in Geneva.
Kerry said earlier on Friday Washington would set up a center for coordination of strikes jointly with Russia only after the conditions for humanitarian access in Syria featured in the Geneva accords were fulfilled.
"In the telephone conversation with Kerry, Lavrov said unambiguously that we insist on the publication of the September 9 Geneva accords in order to prevent these frivolous or simply distorting interpretations of the adopted document," Zakharova said.[.]

Posted by: likklemore | Sep 17 2016 19:28 utc | 9

Putin blinks again.

Posted by: ThatDamnGood | Sep 17 2016 19:38 utc | 10

Posted by: FecklessLeft | Sep 17, 2016 3:02:16 PM | 4

'...who cooked this up.' - It doesn't look like Kerry was involved imo, but 'somebody' wants to make it damn clear that he won't accept the 'Islamic State' being undone any time soon.

There seem to be desperate attempts at escalation ongoing, but it is hard to say whether or not they will succeed. Interestingly, it is top news in RT, Sputnik and BBC, but doesn't show up in google search. Information war galore, also remember the story about the (alleged) Israeli jet and drone.
My interpretation: There are two completely contradictory strategies fighting each other within the US - defend the CoH or kill it.

Posted by: smuks | Sep 17 2016 19:45 utc | 11

B..B..But the war was supposed to be over!?!

Turkish pivot! USA has friends! Aleppo was lost! Putin has matryoshka dolls!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Sep 17 2016 19:48 utc | 12

Well that really tears it. How Putin will be FORCED to put on his tightest corset and make a very strong public declaration that the truce is working as planned and that the Syrian Army will be held strictly accountable for any hostilities and that he trusts Obama and is glad to be working hand in hand with his American partners (don't turn your back on them though Vladimir).

I wonder how Iran feels about those s-300s now proved useless?

Posted by: paul | Sep 17 2016 20:05 utc | 13

Centcom has issued a statement admitting the killing of over 60 Syrian troops was a mistake.

I can't copy the text of the BS but what does it matter to those killed. The US has become a rogue war criminal nation lackey of the global plutocrats.

Here is the ZH link that has the Centcom update in it

Posted by: psychohistorian | Sep 17 2016 20:16 utc | 14

Putin got hoodwinked again. The US will just CoH the Syrian government to death.

Posted by: BiblesNBlowjobs | Sep 17 2016 20:18 utc | 15

Here's the direct link:

Russian MoD had already offered this escape route ('mistake') for the US:
"If this airstrike was carried out due to an error in the coordinates of the targetm it is a direct consequence of US side's unwillingless to coordinate its actions against terrorist groups with Russia," the Russian Defense Ministry spokesman emphasized."

But still, a hell of a warning not to become triumphant and ignore Washington's interests.

Posted by: smuks | Sep 17 2016 20:21 utc | 16

Of course the Russians would be very extremely reluctant to shoot down U.S. strike fighter planes. They almost certainly won't.

They will pull something else. Maybe summon Chinese commandos? Such Chinese ground troops would not be of much use in the China Sea dispute, and could perhaps be of use in Syria? Something like that. There is no "ceasefire" at this point.

Posted by: blues | Sep 17 2016 20:21 utc | 17

Haaretz is reporting 80 killed by US airstrike, while noting that Russian planes were also operating in the area.

Posted by: woogs | Sep 17 2016 20:26 utc | 18

Yes, it is interesting that apart from Russian media the BBC is up to date.

Britain takes part in the coalition airstrikes.

Posted by: somebody | Sep 17 2016 20:30 utc | 19

Amazing lunacy is from the Russians, who still willingly work and invite into Syria the US genocidal evil maniacs.
This disturbing insanity of Russia working with the US re Syria reminds me of the "peace" deals/talks that is Israelis have with the Palestinians over the last 50 or so years. Which is to say it's a complete farce that is only a PR bullshit campaign for the delusional.

Will the Russians get as pissed with these Syrian soldier slaughtered by the US, when just one Russian soldier was slaughtered by the Turks. Oh course not. Discrepancy is disgusting.

There is no such thing as a multipolar world if you're not going to defend your allies territory. That way you'll be surrounded and strangled.

Posted by: tom | Sep 17 2016 20:31 utc | 20

This might be worth turning on the TV for ... Tuesday ... I'd love a walk-out.

WASHINGTON (AP) — In one of his last major appearances on the world stage, President Barack Obama will try to define how his leadership has made the planet safer and more prosperous when he gives his farewell speech to the U.N. General Assembly on Tuesday.

ap: Obama aims to define his global leadership in last UN speech.

Posted by: Susan Sunflower | Sep 17 2016 20:32 utc | 21

This is more likely to turn out like the su24 shoot down all over again. If Putin needs an excuse to provide an A2AD zone over all of Syria, he now has one. -Might ask Turkey to pull up stakes and leave while at it.

Posted by: wwinsti | Sep 17 2016 20:34 utc | 22

Pentagon acknowledges they might have conducted an airstrike against the Syrian Army.
I wonder whether Obama will feign losing-his-legendary-cool over this much less punish anyone ... We knew the pentagon hated the ceasefire ... and they appear hate Obama tooo.
Still waiting for dragon-lady Clinton to mention Syria ...

Posted by: Susan Sunflower | Sep 17 2016 20:35 utc | 23

Israel and US just shit on your head Vladimir and Lavrov.

Thanks for being so alert.

Posted by: Brad | Sep 17 2016 20:38 utc | 24

Keep your eyes on Iran, they're somewhat less likely to turn the other cheek.

Posted by: wwinsti | Sep 17 2016 20:39 utc | 25

US Air Force attacks Syrian Army in Deir Ezzor: reports

DEIR EZZOR, SYRIA (8:05 P.M.) - Minutes ago, the U.S. Air Force struck the Syrian Arab Army's (SAA) positions in the western countryside of the Deir Ezzor Governorate, local activists are reporting.

US jets attack Syrian Army as ISIS captures strategic mountain in Deir Ezzor

DEIR EZZOR (8:25 P.M.) - Al-Masdar News was just told by a senior officer in Deir Ezzor that the U.S. Anti-ISIS Coalition attacked the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) in the Thardeh Mountains.

Syrian Army recovers territory in Deir Ezzor after US attacks their positions

DEIR EZZOR, SYRIA (8:50 P.M.) - Soldiers from the Qassem Units (Special Forces) of the Syrian Arab Army told Al-Masdar moments ago that their forces have recaptured several points in Jabal Thardeh after retreating due U.S. airstrikes on their positions.

Over 80 Syrian soldiers killed by US airstrikes in Deir Ezzor

DEIR EZZOR, SYRIA (10:00 P.M.) - A military source from the Qassem Units told Al-Masdar moments ago that over 80 Syrian Arab Army soldiers were killed by the U.S. airstrikes in Deir Ezzor.

Russia says 62 Syrian forces killed in US-led coalition raids on army positions

"Warplanes from the international anti-terrorist coalition carried out four airstrikes today against Syrian forces surrounded by the Daesh group in the Dayr al-Zawr air base," the Russia army said in a statement. "Sixty-two Syrian soldiers were killed and a hundred others were injured in these strikes."

Two F-16 and two A-10 jets entered Syrian air space from Iraq to carry out the attacks, according to the statement.

It added, "Straight after the coalition's strikes, Daesh militants launched an offensive." "If these strikes were due to an error in the target coordinates, that would be a direct consequence of the US' refusal to coordinate with Russia its fight against the terrorist groups in Syria."

US Airstrikes Kill 62 Syrian Soldiers, Injure over 100

The Islamic State group launched an offensive against the Syrian military in the area immediately after the strikes.

BREAKING: US Bombs Syrian Army Position at Deir Ezzor

BREAKING – The General Command of the Army and Armed Forces said that US alliance aircrafts targeted a Syrian Arab Army position in al-Tharda Mountain in the surroundings of Deir Ezzor Airport, at 5 PM on Saturday, causing losses in lives and equipment and clearly paved the way for ISIS terrorists to attack the position and take control of it.

“This act is a serious and blatant aggression against the Syrian Arab Republic and its army, and constitutes conclusive evidence that the United States and its allies support ISIS and other terrorist organizations,” SANA quoted a Syrian military statement as saying.

“This act reveals the falseness of their claims of fighting terrorism,” it added.

Confirmed reports were that as many as 65 soldiers were killed in the bombing attack, with over 100 wounded.

This number has just been updated at 7:51 pm UTC to have climbed to nearly 100 killed.

Our close contact, Marwa Osman, comments on the brazen attack on RT just moments ago

Posted by: jfl | Sep 17 2016 20:42 utc | 26


assads putins and hezbollahs actions must have consequence expanding into security areas that are clearly mentioned in the ancient texts and the encyclopedia judaica cannot be allowed.
these areas are under are remit unfortunate yes that these actions should be taken but sometimes short sharp shock is necessary.

Every civilization finds it necessary to negotiate compromises with its own values.

Pessimism is a luxury that a Jew can never allow himself.
Golda Meir

we cannot allow israel not be mighty
menechem golani

Posted by: menechem golani | Sep 17 2016 20:46 utc | 27

Maybe we are getting duped as Netanyahu goes to Moscow over and over
And Putin yields.
Rothschild still control Russia central bank.
Gulen /CIA with AWACs shoot down Russian Su 24.....Erdogan gets a pipeline

John F'n anti war sock puppet who throws his medals over the
Whitehouse fence....becomes Sec of State and bomb everyone for Empire?

No Twilight Zone or X File episode this bizarre.

Posted by: Brad | Sep 17 2016 20:48 utc | 28

Andoheb | Sep 17, 2016 2:53:03 PM | 1
paul | Sep 17, 2016 4:05:16 PM | 13
Maximum range of S-400s ~ 400 km (40N6 missile)
Distance from Khmeimim Air Base to Deir Ezzor ~ 390 km
So theoretically possible but in practice not.
The S-300VM only goes out to 200 km.

Posted by: blowback | Sep 17 2016 20:51 utc | 29

Don't worry guys, it was just an 'accident.' Nothing to see here. Certainly it's only a war crime if it's intentional.... Right? Or it's only a crime when our enemies perpetrate these actions against us, correct? Surely.

It's only a one day story guys if we play it like this. We know that most of the American public only cares when Americans die. Kunduz was a nonstory, so is all the civilian infrastructure we've targeted 'accidentally' in Yemen. Move along.

Posted by: FecklessLeft | Sep 17 2016 20:58 utc | 30

I blame Russia for all this f*ckry... They sit comfortably in their hotels in US/EU capitals and negotiate away the blood of Syrians so they can get Obama to lift sanctions and the Saudis to stop fooding the market with oil.

The fools in all this are the Syria leadership who continue to listen to the Russia everytime.. Never has the rats abided by ANY ceasefire/deal. Why??? Because they know their backers will absolve them of any crime they commit. Anytime the Syrian army have the rats on the run, Russia magically come up with a plan for a ceasfire of sort. The joke must surely be on the Syrians who think Russia's out there to save them.

The US just murdered over 80 SAA troops who're defending Deir Ezzor against ISIL, paving the way to that terrorists organization to capture key points around that city. On the SOuthern front, Israhell also chips in the help their Nusra buddies against SAA.

Syria will be damned if they don't develop nukes after this war is over. Their cards are limited so they can't respond in kind to any of these flagrant violation of their soveriegnty. They thought the Russians will at least help them guarantee that but they too are in bed with the Israhellis and Americans. Sad state of affairs!!!

Posted by: Zico | Sep 17 2016 21:05 utc | 31

Russia convenes urgent UN security meeting demanding a full explanation.

It gets interesting

Posted by: somebody | Sep 17 2016 21:13 utc | 32

Frankly, nothing new. The US promised news of the location of their supported rebels and didn't do it. The bombing of the SAA in Deir az-Zor could have been accidental.

If the US doesn't come up with the locations, as I expect, the Russians should just continue with their campaign.

Posted by: Laguerre | Sep 17 2016 21:14 utc | 33

re 32

Good for the Russians if they can make something out of it.

Posted by: Laguerre | Sep 17 2016 21:18 utc | 34

Obama has just been going around the political stump comparing Putin to Saddam Hussein. This is no question of the Pentagon doing its own thing. This duplicity and bad faith is straight from the councils of government. Washington, London, Tel Aviv. (As for Ankara--that awaits the lifting of the last veil)

The Russians should waste no time revealing the details of the cease fire agreements. It's just a question now of seeing how many rats are conjoined at the tail.

Posted by: Copeland | Sep 17 2016 21:19 utc | 35

@Laguerre 33

This was no accident and Russia well knows it. Check the DoD link on Friday's airstrikes and see the specificity of the descriptions of targets.

No way they mistook hundreds of SAA for Daesh.

Posted by: woogs | Sep 17 2016 21:23 utc | 36

Digusting. A 7 yr old could have predicted this. Putin must have seen this coming. This blood is on Russia's hands. What now?

Posted by: Alaric | Sep 17 2016 21:25 utc | 37

The Syria arutorities MUST stop listening to Lavrov/Putin and take their country's destiny into their own hands. They're told not to hit back in Israhell/US attacks them.. What kind of f*ckin alliance is this???

Posted by: Zico | Sep 17 2016 21:28 utc | 38


It is all over Google:

Posted by: Kuma | Sep 17 2016 21:39 utc | 39

Russia doesn't seem inclined to let this one slide.


“If previously we had suspicions that Al-Nusra Front is protected this way, now, after today's airstrikes on the Syrian army we come to a really terrifying conclusion for the entire world: The White House is defending IS [Islamic State, formerly ISIS/ISIL]," Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told Rossiya 24.

“We demand a full and detailed explanation from Washington. That explanation must be given at the UN Security Council,” Zakharova added.

Posted by: woogs | Sep 17 2016 21:40 utc | 40

“We demand a full and detailed explanation from Washington. That explanation must be given at the UN Security Council,” Zakharova added.

And exactly what is that going to achieve??? This is all theatre on the Russians part to hide the fact that they got duped AGAIN by their US "partners". Syrians are the ones paying in blood!!!

So they'll call a UNSC meeting, then what??? The US will get backing from her usual crime buddies at the security council(France etc etc) and say it was an "accident". Then what???

Posted by: Zico | Sep 17 2016 21:50 utc | 41

@ruralito #53

nothing wrong with order, and why not have it world-wide?

Spoken like a true zionist.

Who makes the rules?

Order without transparency is called fascism; or capitalism; or scientism; or marxism; or... just plain zionism.

Please understand, I want no part of your plans for my future. Even if you're not a bonafide sociopath, your obliviousness to your own fallibility makes you dangerous in the extreme.

Proles don't want revolution. They only want to be left alone.

Posted by: C I eh? | Sep 17 2016 21:52 utc | 42

blowback @ 29 is correct, the Russian Air Defense S-400 does not have the effective range to defend Deir al-Zour. This attack is a well-planned jab at the patience and coordination between Russia and Syria. To think like an American, this provocation demands an overt response, but Syria/Russia doesn't have the resources to respond as such.

75 years ago, the British cracked the Enigma, but except for Monty, it was used sparingly and many Allied Soldiers died to protect that resource. The US has proven that they do not intend to honor this CoH agreement and all parties are planning accordingly. It takes a patience that the US neither has nor understands to not lash out an immediate retaliation. Putin's lack of response is not the same as Obama's feckless dithering, it will take time to play out.

It is also notable that this happened one day before the Duma elections in Russia.

Posted by: Enrico Malatesta | Sep 17 2016 21:55 utc | 43

Russians are paying in blood, too. Remember the airliner that blew up?

I'm one that thinks they've been too patient, too. This seems different somehow. We'll see.

Posted by: woogs | Sep 17 2016 21:56 utc | 44


Sorry. Wrong thread.

Posted by: C I eh? | Sep 17 2016 21:56 utc | 45

Russia puts its faith in US integrity . US must have promised to kill only jihadis and naturally broke it . US goal is to degrade SAA forces to aid its hihadi proxies . Russia may end up undermining Syrian trust in them , unless they stop working with the Americans

Posted by: Brian | Sep 17 2016 21:58 utc | 46

Moral is never trust the Americans . Russian naivety now on display

Posted by: Brian | Sep 17 2016 22:00 utc | 47

Posted by: woogs | Sep 17, 2016 5:23:23 PM | 36

Presumably the Syrian army had been preparing an offensive on Deir Ezzor

Posted by: somebody | Sep 17 2016 22:01 utc | 48

Provocation or simply a smug and angry response to Syria attempting to defend her airspace from Israeli jets, two nights ago?

Posted by: Cresty | Sep 17 2016 22:12 utc | 49

Russia has to quit referring to the lying bastards in the United States as "partners." They need to immediately put them on notice and tell them to stay OUT of Syria. They're the enemy, pure and simple -- and agreement with the United States is futile and only gives the U.S. a chance and regroup their terrorist pets. You can't sugarcoat the truth. I don't understand why Russia keeps pretending they can.

Posted by: rcentros | Sep 17 2016 22:12 utc | 50

Corrections ... "any agreement" and "only gives the U.S. a chance to regroup and rearm ..."

Posted by: rcentros | Sep 17 2016 22:13 utc | 51

Running to the UN for help is not the way to handle this tragedy.
The Syrian government must immediately suspend all US flyovers over its sovereign territory. That would put Russia in position to legally defend Syria against all invaders.

Posted by: mike whitney | Sep 17 2016 22:14 utc | 52

@somebody #48

Islamic State said via its Amaq news channel it had taken complete control of Jebel Tharda, where the bombed position was located, which would have allowed it to overlook government-held areas of Deir al-Zor.

The city's airport and some districts have been entirely surrounded by Islamic State since last year, with the airport providing their only external access.

However, Russia said the Syrian army later recaptured positions it lost.

Posted by: woogs | Sep 17 2016 22:16 utc | 53

If indeed it happened, which I doubt, it was the Rothschild CIA airforce + Israel which conducted the strike.

Which means Israel is operating aircraft from one of Turkey, Iraq or possibly Azerbaijan.

Which further means, the Russians have been duped in the extreme, which is also extremely doubtful.

I think this story, courtesy Russian oligarch/5th column friendly Sputnik, is another attempt to convince observers that Russia and the US are working at cross purposes, which very obviously they are not.

Posted by: C I eh? | Sep 17 2016 22:26 utc | 54

amaq news channel is rita katz
who is rita katz
if you do not know who rita katz is she site intel group
she is the pretty sister of barbera lerner spector
the george soros rothschild girls.
time runs
time is money
leviathan oil and gas corporations.
poor cheney,rupurt murdoch jacob rothschilds folks on the upper golan
drilling for genie energy oded yinon futures.
amaq news mossad cia with a gay splash of mi6

Posted by: charles drake | Sep 17 2016 22:27 utc | 55

@52 mw 'The Syrian government must immediately suspend all US flyovers over its sovereign territory. That would put Russia in position to legally defend Syria against all invaders. '

How about ALL flyovers over its sovereign territory? Those by Turkey ... and the UK/FR/DE and the rest of the NATO rabble as well.

Pentagon release statement on Deir Ezzor massacre

September 17, 2016
RELEASE #20180917-27

Coalition halts airstrike in progress against possible Syrian military position

TAMPA, Fla. — Earlier today Coalition aircraft conducted an airstrike south of Dayr Az Zawr, Syria. Coalition forces believed they were striking a Da'esh fighting position that they had been tracking for a significant amount of time before the strike. The coalition airstrike was halted immediately when coalition officials were informed by Russian officials that it was possible the personnel and vehicles targeted were part of the Syrian military.

The location of the strike is in an area the coalition has struck in the past, and coalition members in the Combined Air Operations Center had earlier informed Russian counterparts of the upcoming strike. It is not uncommon for the Coalition Air Operations Center to confer with Russian officials as a professional courtesy and to deconflict Coalition and Russian aircraft, although such contact is not required by the current U.S. — Russia Memorandum of Understanding on safety of flight.

Syria is a complex situation with various military forces and militias in close proximity, but coalition torces would not intentionally strike a known Syrian military unit, officials said The coalition will review this strike and the circumstances surrounding it to see if any lessons can be learned.


Russia denies knowledge of US airstrikes that killed tens of Syrian soldiers

An earlier CENTCOM Press Release claimed that Russia had knowledge that the United States were going to begin airstrikes in areas of Deir Ezzor. This has been flatly denied by the Russian side.

Posted by: jfl | Sep 17 2016 22:31 utc | 56

@ Laguerre 33

Russians are livid. ..not buying the “It was an Accident” excuse.

Russia’s FM said today, (Sunday) after the US airstrike on SAA in Deir ez-Zor on Saturday confirms their suspicions:

US Defends IS

MOSCOW, September 17. /TASS/. US airstrikes at the Syrian army lead to the conclusion that Washington defends the Islamic State (terrorist organization banned in Russia), Russian Foreign Ministry’s official spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told Rossiya 24 TV channel on Sunday.

"If we had suspicions earlier that this is in defense of Jebhat al-Nusra (terrorist organization banned in Russia), then now, after today’s airstrikes at the Syrian army, we come to a scary conclusion — the White House defends IS," Zakharova said.[.]

Posted by: likklemore | Sep 17 2016 22:34 utc | 57

Wow, amazing amount of trolls here today. War machine, fog machine. Always happens with a military action by the US, sure sign of additional budget being brought to bear by the Pentagon - more than $6 Trillion unaccounted for so far, not hard to see how, when they piss it away on low-grade techs such as the ones commenting here.

Scott over at the Saker cites Russian thinking that maybe the US military is not actually obeying the orders of its government. Is this a war between State and Pentagon? I don't know, but it's an interesting concept to watch for. We all think the US is in control of things as one seamless operation, and we think the same of Russia in Syria, but there must be alliances between forces on both sides, and a shitshow like this one may break some of them into the open to become visible.

How long can Russia restrain the Syrian axis from attacking US forces directly? Hopefully long enough to lay down the irrefutable paper trail at the UN. So Russia gets it to the UN finally - but very tragic occurrence to cause this.

A source I don't know, but retweeted by Sharmine Narwani, SyrianMilitaryCap. ‏@syrianmilitary says: "US used an ECM \ jamming jet to cover it's attack on Dir Al Zor airport ,making sure Syrian radars wont see them coming".

If true, and if established by Russia at the UN this strikes me as damning evidence. The US and Israel may just have gone too far this time. I honestly don't believe anyone will hesitate to bring the hammer down on them both, if the appropriate justification can be proved in the light of day. We shall see.

Posted by: Grieved | Sep 17 2016 22:37 utc | 58

@56 @52 mw 'The Syrian government must immediately suspend all US flyovers over its sovereign territory. That would put Russia in position to legally defend Syria against all invaders. '

And, of course, the US/Israel as well.

Posted by: jfl | Sep 17 2016 22:37 utc | 59

@58, g 'Scott over at the Saker cites Russian thinking that maybe the US military is not actually obeying the orders of its government.'

More likely the 98 lb. weakling war criminal/Nobel Peace Prize Laureate is not giving the appropriate orders ... has been taking and not giving orders for 8 years, at least 4 countries (Libya, Ukraine, Syria, Yemen), and at least 6 or 7 hundred thousand lives of innocents. State/CIA/Pentagon form the triad of DDD&D. The NPPL is their enabler, PR man.

Posted by: jfl | Sep 17 2016 22:45 utc | 60


What is it with internet nutjobs and a complete disregard for capitalization and proper sentence structure, and grammar in general? There may actually be legitimate points in here, but the presentation makes it look like it was written by a badly designed bot programed by an illiterate Nigerian. How you present ideas matters and can have a lot of impact on whether people pay attention to you or not.

Posted by: Kuma | Sep 17 2016 22:49 utc | 61

Apparently it was Russian airstrikes that halted the Daesh advance following the US airstrike.

From RT:

"Immediately after the airstrike by coalition planes, Islamic State militants launched their offensive,” said the chief of the Russian Reconciliation Center in Syria, Lieutenant General Vladimir Savchenko. He added that the Russian air force intervened immediately to halt terrorist advances and have conducted at least 10 airstrikes on Islamists’ positions since 7:00pm local time.

Posted by: woogs | Sep 17 2016 22:51 utc | 62

Given the recent comments from the US military about the lack of trust with the Russians and the reasons for that lack of trust makes me believe FWIW that the USAF most likely did make a genuine mistake - the proof will be in the degree of coordination that occurs after the joint centre is established if it is established. However, that's not to say that bombing so close to Syrian soldiers actually fighting ISIS wasn't an incredibly stupid policy.

Posted by: blowback | Sep 17 2016 23:00 utc | 63

@58 g 'We all think the US is in control of things as one seamless operation, and we think the same of Russia in Syria, but there must be alliances between forces on both sides ...'

I think the water-fetching brooms conjured up by the NPPL apprentice sorcerer, both on the ground in his target and proxy states and in Washington DC, have always gone through the motions of subservience but have always been out for #1 in each case exclusively.

Now that the NPPL is a lame-duck as well as lame-apprentice, lame-laureate they no longer go through the motions. The monsters he's let out of the box are all on their own. No hope of the 'real' sorcerer showing up and putting things right. That only happens in the fairy tales.

Here on earth its the Syrians, Lebanese, Palestinians, Iraqis, Iranians, and Russians left with the job of reducing the myriad brooms to match sticks and dust ... a frightfully bloody and confrontational operation to which Russia has been trying to find an alternative for the past year.

Posted by: jfl | Sep 17 2016 23:00 utc | 64

@Kuma, post 61: "the presentation makes it look as though ... "

Like is a preposition; therefore it should precede a noun. Looks like a house. Looks like a tree. Look like Simon, etc.

Your "Looks like it was written" is what I would consider the grammar of a juvenile. Sort your own grammar out first before taking other people down for theirs.

Posted by: Gerard Lally | Sep 17 2016 23:08 utc | 65

@63 bb '... the USAF most likely did make a genuine mistake ... that's not to say that bombing so close to Syrian soldiers actually fighting ISIS wasn't an incredibly stupid policy.'

Give it up with apologies for the liars, murderers, and war criminals of the US Wehrmacht, bb.

To initiate a war of aggression, therefore, is not only an international crime; it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole.

The above formerly attributed to Robert H. Jackson, US prosecutor at Nuremburg, now to Norman Birkett by wikipedia. It's correct, in my view, no matter who said it.

The US' present run of aggression began in Afghanistan in 2001 and has been going full-bore for 15 years since. The NAZIs were 'only' able to carry on for 6 years. The US has had the help of Israel, the UK, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and the GCC, and NATO, of course - the Axis of Terror in the 21st Century.

Posted by: jfl | Sep 17 2016 23:18 utc | 66

As an aside, I'm quite sick of the Russia bashing that so many here engage in at every opportunity. Syria still exists today because Russia stepped in. Russia doesn't not have the resources to do everything we want them to do, or even everything they themselves would want to do. Russia also has a supreme responsibility to itself and to humanity to avoid a nuclear war. Eyeball to Eyeball confrontations with the US are always a threat to escalate uncontrollably. I for one think Russia is doing all it can with the resources available to it.

Posted by: Lysander | Sep 17 2016 23:22 utc | 67

@67 lysander

I agree with all you've said, thanks for saying it. I think the 'Russia bashing' is pure fraud, undertaken by our legion of trolls, especially vocal in the wake of extreme US atrocities like this one. Don't pay them any heed.

Posted by: jfl | Sep 17 2016 23:32 utc | 68

@67 Lysander

I agree with everything you've said and thank you for saying it. I think the Russia bashing it just the work of our legion of trolls, especially active after an extreme US atrocity like this one. Pay them no heed.

Posted by: jfl | Sep 17 2016 23:34 utc | 69

Sorry, thought I'd forgotten to press the post button when the first post didn't appear.

Posted by: jfl | Sep 17 2016 23:35 utc | 70

Let's assume for a minute that the attack was not a mistake but a calculated gamble that Russia would timidly go to the UN rather then take immediate defensive action to counter any future incidents.

Then the Pentagon could be reasonably sure that they could take aim at Syrian troops with no real consequences.

That, I think, is a very dangerous precedent that could result in even more casualties.
I think Putin needs to respond firmly to avoid an unnecessary escalation, but I could be wrong.

I suspect this attack was decided at the very highest level of command, perhaps even Ash Carter himself.

Posted by: mike whitney | Sep 17 2016 23:40 utc | 71


Hahahaha, nope. English has no equivalent of the Academie Francaise to dictate language rules. Any 'rule' you can think of is merely an opinion. However, something like @55 is a mess by anyone's standards.

Posted by: Kuma | Sep 17 2016 23:40 utc | 72

And another little tidbit that the treasonous Israeli-firsters at (((CENTCOM))) would prefer wasn't public knowledge: A-10s are not sent out without Joint Terminal Air Controllers (JTACs) on the ground calling in strikes. If it was just F-16's, then I could see the pilots just bombing a set of drone-derived coordinates blindly and hoping they hit a legitimate target. A-10s are not sent out unless you want someone low and slow to do close air support and react to emerging/intermittent targets. You do NOT 'watch' a static target at fixed coordinates for hours and send an A-10 after it - that's not what they're made for and not how they're used. CENTCOM sent A-10s to do close-air support for 'someone' in Dier EzZor at the precise time the SAA was ready to roll against the head-choppers.

So the next logical question is why (((CENTCOM))) has JTACs embedded in ISIS in Deir EzZor. Is the U.S. placeholder for the Omar and Sijan Oil Fields so important that they would actually protect the ISIS head-choppers until Turkey can roll down there and 'liberate' it? It's less than 100km from ar Raqqa an al Hasaka, and it doesn't look like the U.S.'s failed New Syrian Army is up to the task of seizing it from Syria. Dier EzZor is the key to 'owning' the eastern slice of Syria for pipelines or anything else.

Could the U.S. be so stupid as to actually have put JTACs in or along side head-choppers in Dier EzZor to protect it from the Syrian army? At this point, I would have to say: yes. Absolutely, unequivocally YES - the U.S. is that stupid. I would bet my bottom dollar that U.S. JTACs called in those strikes intentionally to do exactly what they did: soften up the SAA for a pre-emptive ISIS attack, specifically to prevent Dier EzZor from falling to the planned SAA attack.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Sep 17 2016 23:46 utc | 73

jfl | Sep 17, 2016 7:18:15 PM | 66
The USAF has technology which allows them to drop JDAM-ER bombs from over 45 miles (72 kms) away - if this was intentional they could have used that and had plausible deniability while the media focused on this. Forensic examination of the site would eventually have have revealed what really happened but by then the news cycle would have moved on and few people would be interested. Just look at the Assad-used-chemical-weapons meme as an example. I know that Obama et al are ambivalent about ISIS because of their unhealthy obsession with regime change in Syria but being called the ISILAF is far too embarrassing for them and they have little shame as it is.
BTW, the USG should be thankful there were no Russian advisers present as far as we know and should stay well away from the SAA in the future in case there are.

Posted by: blowback | Sep 17 2016 23:48 utc | 74

@ 63, An honest mistake by the USAF? Well then, I look forward to hearing their profuse apologies and offers of compensation. And what bad luck that ISIS picks exactly that moment to attack.

Posted by: Lysander | Sep 17 2016 23:49 utc | 75

US Official: we have regret for strike on Syrian Army in Deir Ezzor

A Washington official has said that the United States has "relayed our regret" for striking the Syrian Army who are fighting ISIS in Deir Ezzor according to the Associated Press.

As always, the people you've 'mistakenly' murdered, their families and friends, have more than 'regrets' for your murderous string of terror over the past decade and a half.

Russia: We have concluded that USA is defending ISIS

A spokesperson for Russia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs has announced that "After today's attack on the Syrian army, we come to the terrible conclusion that the White House is defending ISIS".

It's hard not to come to that conclusion, even for an American in strict denial.

Posted by: jfl | Sep 17 2016 23:50 utc | 76

There is no way to directly confront the US, they are simply too dangerous precisely due to the chickhawk nature of the leadership. The best that can be achieved is to encourage the ongoing over-extension of the USA. Keep in mind folks like the Clintons are personally so far over-extended in their corruption they have only one direction to go in; even as it kills the USA.
Many, many more people are going to suffer and die before this beast collapses.
There is a huge amount of work that needs to go into preparing for this inevitability and it all takes time.
One hopes that America doesn't panic too soon or we all die.

Posted by: Bakerpete | Sep 18 2016 0:02 utc | 77

Throngs of young Americans will still show up to suck Obama's cock.

Posted by: RudyM | Sep 18 2016 0:03 utc | 78

@PavewayIV | Sep 17, 2016 7:46:43 PM | 73

Adding to your circumstantial case that Americans on the ground directed the strike, recall this.

US special forces are able to deploy to the area, are in the area, are actively operating. This was an explicit American attack against the Syrian Army in support of an ISIS offensive.

Posted by: Cresty | Sep 18 2016 0:03 utc | 79

blowback @63

It was no mistake:

i) Obomber has been humiliated personally at the G20 by by Putin. Obomber being a narcissitic sociopath doesn't take that kindly. Look at how he has treated all the whistleblowers revealing the sordid details of the US regime. He would want to get hois own back.

ii) Similarly for the Pentagon. They are used to 'my way or the highway', now they are having to negotiate with another military on equal terms. That will not go down well with the Breedhate types infesting the place.

iii) Given one locaton to hit to change the status at Deir ez Zor, the one chosen had to be top of the list. It is high ground overlooking the airbase. Control of it is essential for maintaining the essential air drops without which the civilians would be starved into surrender.

iv) It has been under SAA control for considerable time. There is no way it could be considered potential ISIS territory prior to the attack.

v) The aircraft came in with transponders off and jamming enabled. That was not necessary to hide the attack from ISIS. It only makes sense if the intent was to hide from a capable military.

vi) ISIS carried out a significant ground attack immediately afterwards.

vii) The US explanations were all over the place. They are following their tiresome machinations whenever they get caught out c.f. the Kunduz and Aleppo hospital strikes, etc.

Posted by: Yonatan | Sep 18 2016 0:09 utc | 80

PavewayIV | Sep 17, 2016 7:46:43 PM | 73
The USAF has used Forward Air Controllers-Airborne (FAC-A) with OA-10s in the past, so why shouldn't it have used FAC-A in A-10Cs today particuarly if they're fitted with Sniper targeting pods?

Posted by: blowback | Sep 18 2016 0:18 utc | 81

@74 bb

Thanks for the info, but I'll go with PaveWayIV's just above yours. Ash Carter doesn't care if he 'shames' the NPPL, in fact he enjoys rubbing BO's nose in his own dirt, I'm sure.

@72 @61 Kuma

You're right of course in dismissing the closet formalist who crawled in from the cold ... but I think the problem with 'Charles Drake' is that he's chosen a penname reminiscent of the famous 'Sir Francis Drake, vice admiral (c. 1540 – 27 January 1596) ... an English sea captain, privateer, navigator, slaver, and politician of the Elizabethan era.' But 'Charles' is not a famous English war criminal, he's someone whose first language is not English, commenting here in English.

On the contents of Charles Drake's expositions ... he seems to have a one-track mind. Rita Katz is an 'interesting' character, though, in this instance, according to wikipedia. I guess the 'sisterhood' of Katz and Barbara Lerner Spectre is 'figurative', the latter is 21 years the elder of the former and neither one's biography includes the other. My eyes glaze over when a post mentions 'the Rothchilds'. His English seems the least of his 'problems' from my point of view.

Posted by: jfl | Sep 18 2016 0:23 utc | 82

Cresty | Sep 17, 2016 8:03:46 PM | 79
I think you're confusing Deir Ezzor city with Deir Ezzor Governorate. Abu Sayyaf was killed near Al Mayadin, about 45 kms southish of Deir Ezzor in the Euphrates valley

Posted by: blowback | Sep 18 2016 0:35 utc | 83

@81 bb

FAC-A's would be the F-16 guys looking out their windows? Yonatan @80 makes points more accessible to me, and I agree with them. Face it, you're working for the bad guys. Bad to the bone.

Posted by: jfl | Sep 18 2016 0:45 utc | 84

This could be Ash Carter trying to undo the CoH. Obama is barely in control of the security establishment.

Posted by: Hat | Sep 18 2016 0:48 utc | 85

@81 bb

Yonatan's iv, v, and vi are especially persuasive.

Posted by: jfl | Sep 18 2016 0:51 utc | 86

Lol, Putin is really worked up! He called a UNSC meeting!

Posted by: paul | Sep 18 2016 1:01 utc | 87


You're right. Thanks for calling me out and not letting that inaccuracy hang out there. Too many double names in Syria

Posted by: Cresty | Sep 18 2016 1:09 utc | 88

we can always count on paul, tom, wow, charles drake, and menechem golani to either berate russia/putin, or obfuscate the topic at hand...Gerard Lally looks like more back up for the same purpose... hey shit happens and then the trolls come up to cement how the usa made a mistake, lol.. if you believe that, you may as well forget getting a bead on what has been happening the past however many years..

Posted by: james | Sep 18 2016 1:10 utc | 89

typo @12: no friends

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Sep 18 2016 1:31 utc | 90

Interesting to see what the msm says early on, before they get their lies straight. The SAA position had been watched for days, yet we're supposed to believe they were mistaken for Daesh. Lol

The strike began in the early evening, when planes began attacking a group of vehicles that American surveillance aircraft had been watching for several days, according to a Centcom official who requested anonymity because the episode was still being investigated. Military intelligence had identified the cluster of vehicles, which the official said included at least one tank, as belonging to the Islamic State, the official said.

The attack went on for about 20 minutes, with the planes destroying the vehicles and gunning down dozens of people in the open desert, the official said. Shortly after this, an urgent call came into the American military command center in Qatar, the outpost in the Persian Gulf that coordinates the aerial campaign in Syria and Iraq.

The call was from a Russian official who said that the American planes were bombing Syrian government troops and should immediately call off the strike. The Centcom official said the attack was halted within minutes, but not until dozens had been killed.

Posted by: woogs | Sep 18 2016 1:31 utc | 91


Posted by: PAUL | Sep 18 2016 1:31 utc | 92

who funds rita katz
what are the connections between rita katz site intel group and amaq news
who funds barbera lerner spector what does she do
talk of grammar A
what is genie energy moron
what is the location of the drilling
who are the directors of genie energy sayanim
murdoch and rothschilds and soros connections
or am eye a liar liar
kuma clearly hasbara
read the words a mess for sure but plenty truth
for the sayanim
genie energy is an open book director lists for all 2 sea
do you not sea
leviatham trillion dollar oded yinon projects

all makes sense when one reads the chatham house brookings united services institute reports and future mappa plans.

and let us not forget the mi6 run royal house of saud what an in joke to have donmeh jewish family controlling mecca and medina.
words and horrible grammar truth.
feel free to pick holes in the spiel ling and avoid zionist realities.
nice to sea james putting a block on me and soon calling for a word deletion

oded yinon word inclusion gets the sayanim active hey james but as you would say these issues are not a tel aviv issue

Posted by: cdrake | Sep 18 2016 1:35 utc | 93

US kept putting in Advisors into Vietnam until the Military
Industrial Complex lost patience and had their faux Gulf of Tonkin.
US at present will not leave Iraq...nor give up on Qatar Pipeline/
Partition Syria.
Israel will not permit Iran to have an arc to Lebanon nor the Iran,
Iraq,Syria pipeline.

It might have been better for Syria had Assad given in to the Qatar
Pipeline route.

Putin knows Empire will use Saudi Takfiri kooks to burn you down like the 2 Chechnya wars.

Chechnya proves you must outright win the conflict.

Syria is another Chechnya except more complex.
The UN ...completely useless in both conflicts.

Conclusion is that only a military solution resolves Syria's Future.

Posted by: Brad | Sep 18 2016 1:35 utc | 94


I can certainly see the appeal of blaming everything on the Rothschilds or whomever. Things would be so much simpler if it were all a single evil cabal masterminding everything for decades and centuries on end. Even sites and people who are sometimes worth listening too occasionally descend into that kind of talk. I'm thinking in particular of Saker here; he periodically rants about how the Freemasons have conspired to destroy Russia for centuries, Napoleon was a Freemason etc.

Posted by: Kuma | Sep 18 2016 1:43 utc | 95

85 @hat lets be honest Barry was never in control of the security establishment.

Posted by: Idi | Sep 18 2016 1:47 utc | 96

Churkin at UN: "who is in charge in Washington? Is it the White House or the Pentagon?"

good question...

Posted by: Dario | Sep 18 2016 1:59 utc | 97

97 @Dario its a very good question but in the run up to the US elections in November, we only really get is Mrs Clinton dying or is Trump Crazy.

Posted by: Idi | Sep 18 2016 2:04 utc | 98

Polls show that the proles do insist on revolution right now.

They hate to wait. They get all rowdy you know.

Posted by: blues | Sep 18 2016 2:08 utc | 99

kuma chameleon
you seem more interested in my grammar
and not interested in the why or who
a little peace of the puzzle
but i suppose you and james would say israel once piece
pieces or maybe big chunks for oded yinon
have you bothered to check genie energy drilling locations
have you bothered to check the folks involved
keep digging
you can be assured rupurt murdoch and jacob rothschild are.
genie energy have a press dept contact them
they freely disclose they have nothing to hide.
no need for hidden hands here the golan is israel
so say the people with the biggest bats and clubs
or should that be the folks that where given all those free nuclear submarines by fatboy slim german merkel.
when you have the sampson option as fall back position it kind of gives you plenty leverage yes no

Posted by: cdrake | Sep 18 2016 2:08 utc | 100

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