An airstrike in Syria by the U.S. killed entire families instead of ISIS fighters

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Posted by Ainhoa Aristizabal – 9/30/16

For the closely related operations in Iraq, see American-led intervention in Iraq (2014–present).

American-led intervention in Syria

Part of the Military intervention against ISIL (Operation Inherent Resolve),
the Syrian Civil War, and the Second Cold War. [Tomahawk Missile fired from US Destroyers.jpg

Tomahawk missiles being fired from the warships USS Philippine Sea and USS Arleigh Burke at ISIL targets in Syria
Date 22 September 2014 – present
(2 years and 6 days)
Location Syria
Status: U.S. bombing Syria

Over 5,000 Coalition airstrikes hit ISIL positions[25]

Thousands of targets destroyed, thousands of ISIL fighters killed

ISIL reversals in several areas against the Kurds

Coalition supplying weapons and advisers to the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces

Failure of US-backed rebel training program[26]

Belligerents

Coalition of foreign countries in air war
Inherent Resolve.jpg CJTF–OIR

WAR LOVERS:

United States
Australia[1]
Bahrain
The Netherlands
Denmark[2][3]
Belgium[4]
France[5]
Germany[6]
Jordan
Morocco[7]
Qatar[8]
Saudi Arabia
Turkey[9][10]
United Arab Emirates[11]
United Kingdom[12]
Canada

Coalition forces-ground
Iraqi Kurdistan

Peshmerga[13]

Local ground forces
Flag of Syrian Democratic Forces.svg Syrian Democratic Forces

People’s Protection Units Flag.svg YPG[13]
YPJ Flag.svg YPJ
Al-Sanadid Forces
Syriac Military Council
Flag of al-Sanadid Forces.svg Al-Sanadid Forces
Jaysh al-Thuwar

Syria Free Syrian Army[14]

Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant[15]
[16][17][18]

al-Qaeda

al-Nusra Front (renamed as Jabhat Fateh al-Sham in mid-2016)[19][20]
Khorasan[21]

Flag of Jund al-Aqsa.svg Jund al-Aqsa[22]

Ahrar ash-Sham (disputed)[23][24]
Commanders and leaders:

United States Barack Obama
United States Lloyd Austin
United States James L. Terry
United Kingdom David Cameron
United Kingdom Theresa May
United Kingdom Stephen Hillier
Turkey Recep T. Erdoğan
Turkey Ahmet Davutoğlu
Turkey Ismet Yilmaz
Turkey Hulusi Akar
Australia Tony Abbott
Australia Malcolm Turnbull
Australia Trevor Jones
Australia David Johnston
France François Hollande
France Jean-Yves Le Drian
France Pierre de Villiers
Germany Angela Merkel
Germany Ursula von der Leyen
Germany Volker Wieker
Jordan King Abdullah II
Jordan Abdullah Ensour
Saudi Arabia King Abdullah Al Saud (Died)
Saudi Arabia King Salman
Saudi Arabia Mohammad bin Salman Al Saud
Morocco King Mohammed VI
Morocco Abdelilah Benkirane
Morocco Bouchaib Arroub
United Arab Emirates Khalifa Al Nahyan
Bahrain Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa
Qatar Tamim Al Thani
Qatar Hamad bin Ali Al Attiyah
Rojava Salih Muslim Muhammad
Syria Albay Ahmed Berri
Iraqi Kurdistan Masoud Barzani
Canada Stephen Harper (until November 2015)
Canada Justin Trudeau (until February 2016)
Canada Thomas J. Lawson (until February 2016)
Canada Yvan Blondin (until February 2016)

Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi (WIA) (Leader)[27]
Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant Abu Alaa Afri †
(Deputy Leader of ISIL)[28][29]
Abu Mohammad al-Adnani † (Spokesperson)
Abu Ayman al-Iraqi † (Head of Military Shura)[30][31]
Abu Suleiman † (Replacement Military Chief)[31]
Abu Ali al-Anbari † (Deputy, Syria)
Akram Qirbash †
(Top ISIL judge)[29]
Abu Omar al-Shishani † (Chief commander in Syria) [32][33][34][35]
Abu Sayyaf † (Senior ISIL economic manager)[36]
Abu Khattab al-Kurdi † (Commander of the assault on Kobanî)[37][38]

Abu Mohammad al-Julani (Leader of the al-Nusra Front)
Abu Humam al-Shami † (al-Nusra Military Chief)[39]
Abu Hajer al-Homsi † (top al-Nusra military commander)[40]
Abu Firas al-Suri † (al-Nusra Spokesman)[41][42]
Abu Muhammed al Ansari †
(al-Nusra Emir of the Idlib Province)
Abu Firas al-Suri †(al-Nusra chief spokesperson)[43] Muhsin al-Fadhli † (Leader of Khorasan)[44][45][46]
Sanafi al-Nasr †[47]
David Drugeon †[45][48]
Flag of Jund al-Aqsa.svg Said Arif † (Jund al-Aqsa Military Chief)[22]
Abu Jaber (2014–2015)[49][50]
Abu Yahia al-Hamawi (2015–present)[51]
Strength

Coalition forces: Coalition forces-air
United States:
[show]
Bahrain:
[show]
France:
[show]
Germany:
[show]
Jordan:
[show]
Qatar:
[show]
Saudi Arabia:
[show]
United Arab Emirates:
[show]
United Kingdom:
[show]
The Netherlands:
[show]

Coalition forces-ground
Iraqi Kurdistan:
[show]

Local forces
YPG:
[show]
Free Syrian Army:
[show]

Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant:

Around 100,000 fighters (according to Iraqi Kurdistan Chief of Staff)[69]
3 MiG-21 or MiG-23 aircraft[70][71]
At least a few hundred tanks[72][73]
3 drones[74][75][76][77]

al-Qaeda:

al-Nusra Front: 10,000[68]
Khorasan: 50[78]
Jund al-Aqsa: 1,000[79]

Ahrar ash-Sham:

10,000–20,000[80]

Casualties and losses

United States United States:

1 Marine dead (non-combat)[81]
1 drone shot down by the Syrian Arab Republic[82]

Jordan Jordan:

1 serviceman executed[83]
1 F-16 fighter plane crashed[84]

Unknown:

1 UAV crashed[85][86]

Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant:

5,359+ killed[87]

al-Qaeda:

136 killed[87]

Ahrar ash-Sham:

2 killed[87][88]

Jaysh al-Sunna:

10 killed[87]

617 civilians killed by Coalition airstrikes[87]
2,142+ civilians killed by ISIL[89]
Over 420,000 civilians displaced or fled to other countries[90][91]
Number of militants killed possibly higher, due to them covering up their losses.[92]
[show]

v t e

Syrian Civil War

During the Syrian Civil War, which began in 2011, the United States first supplied the rebels of the Free Syrian Army with non-lethal aid (including food rations and pickup trucks), but quickly began providing training, cash, and intelligence to selected Syrian rebel commanders.

The United States began surveillance missions on ISIL positions in Syria in September 2014. On September 10, President Barack Obama gave a speech indicating his intent to “degrade and ultimately destroy” Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), saying, “I have made it clear that we will hunt down terrorists who threaten our country, wherever they are. That means I will not hesitate to take action against ISIL in Syria, as well as Iraq.”

President Vladimir Putin is fast turning Russia into an outlaw nation. As one of five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, his country shares a special responsibility to uphold international law. Yet, his behavior in Ukraine and Syria violates not only the rules intended to promote peace instead of conflict, but also common human decency.

This bitter truth was driven home twice on Wednesday. An investigative team led by the Netherlands concluded that the surface-to-air missile system that shot down a Malaysia Airlines plane over Ukraine in July 2014, killing 298 on board, was sent from Russia to Russian-backed separatists and returned to Russia the same night. Meanwhile, in Syria, Russian and Syrian warplanes knocked out two hospitals in the rebel-held sector of Aleppo as part of an assault that threatens the lives of 250,000 more people in a war that has already claimed some 500,000 Syrian lives.

Russia has tried hard to pin the blame for the airline crash on Ukraine. But the new report, produced by prosecutors from the Netherlands, Australia, Belgium, Malaysia and Ukraine, confirms earlier findings. It uses strict standards of evidence and meticulously documents not only the deployment of the Russian missile system that caused the disaster but also Moscow’s continuing cover-up.

Ukraine’s foreign minister, Pavlo Klimkin, told The Times last week that his government [which government? Poroshenko’s?] is determined to bring both Russia and the individuals who fired the missile to justice.

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President Vladimir Putin is fast turning Russia into an outlaw nation, just like ours. As one of five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, his country shares a special responsibility to uphold international law. Yet, his behavior in Ukraine and Syria violates not only the rules intended to promote peace instead of conflict, but also common human decency.

This bitter truth was driven home twice on Wednesday. An investigative team led by the Netherlands[which refused to send the results of his “investigation” about the Malaysia Airlines concluded that the surface-to-air missile system that shot down a Malaysia Airlines plane over Ukraine in July 2014, killing 298 on board, was sent from Russia to Russian-backed separatists and returned to Russia the same night. Meanwhile, in Syria, the U.S., Russia and Syrian warplanes knocked out two hospitals in the rebel-held sector of Aleppo as part of an assault that threatens the lives of 250,000 more people in a war that has already claimed some 500,000 Syrian lives.

Russia has tried hard to pin the blame for the airline crash on Ukraine. But the new report, produced by prosecutors from the Netherlands, Australia, Belgium, Malaysia and Ukraine, confirm earlier findings. It uses strict standards of evidence and meticulously documents not only the deployment of the Russian missile system that caused the disaster but also Moscow’s continuing cover-up.

Ukraine’s foreign minister, Pavlo Klimkin, told The Times last week that his government is determined to bring both Russia and the individuals who fired the missile to justice.
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Some Western officials have accused Russia and the U.S. of war crimes, charges that could be pursued through international channels, even if Moscow blocks a formal referral to the International Criminal Court. New sanctions against Russia also should be considered. Mr. Putin will undoubtedly fight any such action, using his veto on the Security Council, but whatever his response, the United States should lend its support to Ukraine’s quest for accountability.

There seems no holding Mr. Putin to account in Syria. For months he has pretended to negotiate on a political solution to a five-year-old civil war between his client, President Bashar al-Assad, and rebels backed by the United States and some Arab nations. But despite pleas from Secretary of State John Kerry, who has spent an enormous amount of time and effort negotiating two separate (and short-lived) cease-fires, Russian and Syrian forces, backed by Iranian ground troops, have continued the slaughter.

Over recent days, Mr. Putin has again shown his true colors with air attacks that have included powerful bunker-busting bombs that can destroy underground hospitals and safety zones where civilians seek shelter. On Sept. 19, Russia bombed an aid convoy, which like hospitals and civilians are not supposed to be targeted under international law.

On Wednesday, Mr. Kerry threatened to withdraw an American team from Geneva where the two sides had established a center to collaborate on a cease-fire. But that is likely to have little effect, and Mr. Kerry has few, if any, diplomatic cards to play.

President Obama has long refused to approve direct military intervention in Syria. And Mr. Putin may be assuming that Mr. Obama is unlikely to confront Russia in his final months and with an American election season in full swing. But with the rebel stronghold in Aleppo under threat of falling to the government, administration officials said that such a response is again under consideration.

Mr. Putin fancies himself a man on a mission to restore Russia to greatness. Mrs Clinton also dreams of her mission to restore America to greatness. Russia could indeed be a great force for good. Yet his unconscionable behavior — butchering civilians in Syria and Ukraine, annexing Crimea, computer-hacking American government agencies, crushing dissent at home — suggests that the furthest thing from his mind is becoming a constructive partner in the search for peace. But let’s think about all the many countries that our military has invaded and occupy.

Some Western officials have accused Russia and the U.S. of war crimes, charges that could be pursued through international channels, even if Moscow blocks a formal referral to the International Criminal Court. New sanctions against Russia also should be considered. Mr. Putin will undoubtedly fight any such action, using his veto on the Security Council, but whatever his response, the United States should lend its support to Ukraine’s quest for accountability.

There seems no holding Mr. Putin to account in Syria. For months he has pretended to negotiate on a political solution to a five-year-old civil war between his client, President Bashar al-Assad, and rebels backed by the United States and some Arab nations. But despite pleas from Secretary of State John Kerry, who has spent an enormous amount of time and effort negotiating two separate (and short-lived) cease-fires, Russian and Syrian forces, backed by Iranian ground troops, have continued the slaughter.

Over recent days, Mr. Putin has again shown his true colors with air attacks that have included powerful bunker-busting bombs that can destroy underground hospitals and safety zones where civilians seek shelter. On Sept. 19, Russia bombed an aid convoy, which like hospitals and civilians are not supposed to be targeted under international law.

On Wednesday, Mr. Kerry threatened to withdraw an American team from Geneva where the two sides had established a center to collaborate on a cease-fire. But that is likely to have little effect, and Mr. Kerry has few, if any, diplomatic cards to play.

President Obama has long refused to approve direct military intervention in Syria. And Mr. Putin may be assuming that Mr. Obama is unlikely to confront Russia in his final months and with an American election season in full swing. But with the rebel stronghold in Aleppo under threat of falling to the government, administration officials said that such a response is again under consideration.

Mr. Putin fancies himself a man on a mission to restore Russia to greatness. Russia could indeed be a great force for good. Yet his unconscionable behavior — butchering civilians in Syria and Ukraine, annexing Crimea, computer-hacking American government agencies, crushing dissent at home — suggests that the furthest thing from his mind is becoming a constructive partner in the search for peace.

On September 22, 2014, the United States, Bahrain, Jordan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates began to strike targets of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) inside Syria,[15][94] as well as the Khorasan group in the Idlib Governorate to the west of Aleppo, and the al-Nusra Front around Ar-Raqqah,[21][95] as part of the Military intervention against ISIL.

On November 2, 2015, in response to the intervention, representatives from Ahrar ash-Sham attended a meeting with the al-Nusra Front, the Khorasan Group, the ISIL, and Jund al-Aqsa, which sought to unite several hard-line groups against the US-led coalition and other moderate Syrian rebel groups.[96] On November 6, a US airstrike struck Ahrar ash-Sham at its headquarters in Idlib.[24] By 14 November 2014, it was revealed that the negotiations between al-Nusra, Jund al-Aqsa, ISIL and Ahrar ash-Sham had failed.[97]

posted by Ainhoa Aristizabal — Unruly Hearts editor

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