One of US 'sides' gave US taxpayer provided weapons to Al Qaeda group:
3/27/16, "In Syria, militias armed by the Pentagon fight those armed by the CIA," LA Times, Nabih Bulos, W.J. Hennigan and Brian Bennett
"Syrian militias armed by different parts of the U.S. war machine have
begun to fight each other on the plains between the besieged city of
Aleppo and the Turkish border, highlighting how little control U.S.
intelligence officers and military planners have over the groups they have financed and trained in the bitter five-year-old civil war.
fighting has intensified over the last two months, as CIA-armed units
and Pentagon-armed ones have repeatedly shot at each other while
maneuvering through contested territory on the northern outskirts of
Aleppo, U.S. officials and rebel leaders have confirmed.
mid-February, a CIA-armed militia called Fursan al Haq, or Knights of
Righteousness, was run out of the town of Marea, about 20 miles north of
Aleppo, by Pentagon-backed Syrian Democratic Forces moving in from
Kurdish-controlled areas to the east....
The attacks by one U.S.-backed group against another come amid continued
heavy fighting in Syria and illustrate the difficulty facing U.S.
efforts to coordinate among dozens of armed groups that are trying to
overthrow the government of President Bashar Assad, fight the Islamic State militant group and battle one another all at the same time.
“It is an enormous challenge,” said Rep. Adam Schiff
(D-Burbank), the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, who
described the clashes between U.S.-supported groups as “a fairly new
“It is part of the three-dimensional chess that is the Syrian battlefield,” he said....
President Obama this month authorized a new Pentagon plan to train and
arm Syrian rebel fighters, relaunching a program that was suspended in
the fall after a string of embarrassing setbacks which included recruits
being ambushed and handing over much of their U.S.-issued ammunition
and trucks to an Al Qaeda affiliate....
The CIA, meanwhile, has its own operations center inside Turkey from
which it has been directing aid to rebel groups in Syria, providing them
with TOW antitank missiles from Saudi Arabian weapons stockpiles.
the Pentagon's actions are part of an overt effort by the U.S. and its
allies against Islamic State, the CIA's backing of militias is part of a
separate covert U.S. effort
aimed at keeping pressure on the Assad
government in hopes of prodding the Syrian leader to the negotiating
“Fighting over territory in Aleppo demonstrates how difficult it is for
the U.S. to manage these really localized and in some cases entrenched
conflicts,” said Nicholas A. Heras, an expert on the Syrian civil war at
the Center for a New American Security, a think tank in Washington.
“Preventing clashes is one of the constant topics in the joint
operations room with Turkey.”...
The clashes brought the U.S. and Turkish officials to “loggerheads,”
he added. After diplomatic pressure from the U.S., the militia withdrew
to the outskirts of the town as a sign of good faith, he said.
But continued fighting among different U.S.-backed groups may be inevitable, experts on the region said.
they cross the border into Syria, you lose a substantial amount of
control or ability to control their actions,” Jeffrey White, a former
Defense Intelligence Agency official, said in a telephone interview.
“You certainly have the potential for it becoming a larger problem as
people fight for territory and control of the northern border area in
Aleppo.”" map, LA Times Graphics