Programme to support rebels fighting against Syrian President was dangerous: Trump

Vastavam web:US President Donald Trump has announced he had ended a programme to support rebels fighting against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad because it was “massive, dangerous, and wasteful.” The comments came days after General Tony Thomas, the head of US special operations confirmed that the four-year-old operation was brought to a close but denied the decision was motivated by a desire to placate Russia, which backs the Assad regime. The missive appeared to be a response to an article by the newspaper published hours earlier and titled “Cooperation with Russia becomes central to Trump strategy in Syria.”

It quoted anonymous officials as saying “the United States and its proxies would concede Assad’s control of most of central and southern Syria” in return for Moscow and its allies steering clear of US coalition operations against the Islamic State group. Former president Barack Obama approved the rebel aid program in 2013 as various insurgent groups sought external support in a general uprising against the Assad regime. But the US commitment remained ambiguous amid doubts in some quarters that the rebels could actually manage to depose Assad and as attention turned to the rising power of the Islamic State group in Syria and Iraq. Support for the program further eroded last year after the rebels lost the areas they held in the Syrian city of Aleppo under a brutal Russian-backed government assault