‘Corruption name of the game for US policy in Syria’

A Nusra Front fighter © Ammar Abdullah
When people warned sophisticated US weapons and anti-aircraft missiles could fall into the hands of radical organizations, I believe those warnings were absolutely correct, writer and author Abdel Bari Atwan told RT.

It's been revealed that weapons sent into Jordan by the CIA and Saudi Arabia for Syrian rebels have been repeatedly stolen and then sold on the black market.

The Jordanian officers who were part of the corrupt scheme were reportedly spending the proceedings buying SUVs, iPhones and other luxury items. Moreover, at some point the program literally backfired.

After two American instructors were among five people killed at a police training facility in the Jordanian capital Amman, an FBI investigation revealed the perpetrator used one of the weapons stolen from the CIA-Saudi shipment for Syria's rebels.

RT: What does this report say about the quality of the US arm-and-train program for Syrian rebels?

Abdel Bari Atwan: It tells a lot. This revelation proves the American policy in Syria is in shambles, in chaos. Corruption is the name of the game. It is not the first time. There were disappointing reports about America arming the Syrian opposition or weapons going to the wrong hands. We heard previously that they spent more than $5 million to train and arm some of the Syrian volunteers and Special Forces. And those people actually never fought ISIS. Most of them joined Al-Nusra brigade or the Islamic State itself and they deserted their forces. So, this is a second revelation which is absolutely shocking that sophisticated arms are sold on the black market and definitely some of these arms would go to ISIS or actually other radical Islamic organizations. And to see some Jordanian intelligence officers are involved in this kind of corruption, and I think this is actually most shocking.  

RT: Will there be any consequences following this damning report?

ABA: Yes, definitely, it would be a lot. Just about five days ago one of these cars which were given to the Syrian opposition in the south of Syria was actually used as a car bomb to attack Jordanian army checkpoints near a refugee camp there. And six Jordanian soldiers were killed because of this. The problem is that when these kinds of weapons get into the wrong hands, it could be devastating. And that is what is happening; you mentioned in earlier reports, two American contactors in Jordan were killed because of these weapons. When many people warned that many American sophisticated weapons and anti-aircraft missiles could fall to the hands of radical organizations, I believe these warnings were absolutely correct.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.