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Author: TriSec    Date: 06/20/2017 09:48:52

Good Morning.

You've probably heard that the US has managed to shoot down a Syrian jet over the north central town of Ja-Din. (A town so small it's not on Google Maps, btw.)

A US Navy fighter jet shot down a Syrian warplane after the Syrian jet dropped bombs near Syrian Democratic Force (SDF) fighters on Sunday, the US military said in a statement.

The shootdown came a little more than two hours after forces allied with the Syrian regime of Bashar al-Assad attacked the north-central Syria town of Ja'Din, which was controlled by the SDF.

A number of SDF forces, who are backed by the US-led coalition, were wounded in the attack, the statement from the Combined Joint Task Force said. The attack drove the SDF from Ja'Din, which is west of Raqqa, the coalition statement said.

Later, a Syrian government Su-22 attacked the SDF forces with bombs.
"In accordance with rules of engagement and in collective self-defense of coalition-partnered forces, (the Syrian jet) was immediately shot down by a US F/A-18E Super Hornet," the coalition statement said.

The shootdown was the first of a Syrian aircraft by the US military since it began fighting ISIS in the country in 2014.

It probably wouldn't be that big a deal in all honesty, but that aircraft belonged to an ally of Russia. Unlike the United States, which recently refused to back NATO's article 5, Russia was quick to consider it an attack upon them and issued a stern warning.

Russia condemned the U.S. shootdown of a Syrian Su-22 fighter bomber over Syria on Sunday, saying it will now track aircraft of any kind near its airspace in Syria with surface-to-air missiles.

The Russian Ministry of Defense said it will begin tracking joint coalition aircraft west of the Euphrates River and treat them as targets, officials said in a statement Monday.

The ministry also said it has suspended cooperation with the U.S. on deconfliction zones as it believes U.S. Central Command, the combatant command overseeing the Middle East, violated the memorandum of understanding the U.S. set up with Russia in 2015.

The memorandum established a phone "hotline" the militaries use to alert one another of actions they're taking in Syria.

Until a thorough account of the attack from the U.S. Navy pilot who shot down the Su-22 is provided by CentCom, Russia will cease to work with the U.S. on deconflicting operations, the statement said.

Our boy in Washington just keeps swinging that bat at the hornet's nest. He's getting closer to connecting every day.

I suppose it all fits in with our silent war that continues over the skies of Iraq. Despite it not being in the headlines anymore, we're still killing people there nearly every day.

Two weeks ago, the American military finally acknowledged what nongovernmental monitoring groups had claimed for months: The United States-led coalition fighting the Islamic State since August 2014 has been killing Iraqi and Syrian civilians at astounding rates in the four months since President Trump assumed office. The result has been a “staggering loss of civilian life,” as the head of the United Nations’ independent Commission of Inquiry into the Syrian civil war said last week.

“At least 484 civilians have been unintentionally killed by coalition strikes,” the United States Central Command, or Centcom, the military command responsible for the Middle East, said in a June 2 statement. Four months earlier, Centcom had said at least 199 civilians had been killed up to that point in the bombing campaign. Estimates by independent monitors are much higher. Airwars, a watchdog group, says coalition airstrikes have killed nearly 4,000 civilians.

The civilian death toll has risen mainly because the battle has moved deeper into major cities. But even as the civilian death toll ticks upward, the American military has relaxed oversight, investigation and accountability on civilian casualties. Finding out the reasons for these tragic mistakes, seeing what can be learned from them and enforcing the American military’s own standards could save thousands of lives.

Mr. Trump has given the military “total authorization” to decide how, and how much, force will be used, authority that was more closely held by the Obama White House. But Secretary of Defense James Mattis insisted on May 28 that the rules of engagement have not changed. “There is no relaxation of our intention to protect the innocent,” he said.

One reason for the huge increase in noncombatant deaths is that the United States is dropping more bombs — a more than 20 percent increase from the last four months of the Obama presidency to the first four under Mr. Trump.

Indeed, we have elected a military dictator. It's only been five months, and it already feels like we're on the brink of something terrible. At what point does the rest of the world stand up and say "Enough"??


21 comments (Latest Comment: 06/20/2017 21:41:29 by Raine)
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