MSM barely acknowledged a Pro-Assad attack
on a US coalition base
in their frenzied rants against Trump
DoD News Transcript
Secretary Of Defense James N. Mattis
Feb. 8, 2018
… I want to talk about Syria. Because we had what I would characterize as a perplexing situation. Basically outside of Deir ez-Zor, and you know that it’s right on the river, which has been used for basically many months, if not years as a deconfliction line.
Between our own and — and Russia supported operations. That deconfliction line, as you know, has maintained currency all the way through, no matter what you heard in the — in the news or out of other places. That has always — the Russians have always answered, we have always answered.
It has never broken down as a deconfliction line. Coming about, it’s probably a little more than ten miles over the river, and we do coordinate even ground operations on each side. You saw us on the — basically the west side of the river at Tabqa, for example, as we were able to isolate Raqqa.
That would’ve been on their side of the deconfliction line, and they were deconflicting operations, some of them around Deir ez-Zor on our side of the river. For some reason, pro-regime forces — and again I cannot give you any explanation for why they would do this, moved against SDF positions, Syrian Democratic Force positions, with U.S. soft there.
Why were they there? Because it was a headquarters, OK? They began shelling it with artillery. Immediately the deconfliction line was in use, they were moving with tanks obviously in the same direction as they were firing.
At the end of our efforts to defend ourselves, their artillery was knocked out, two of the tanks were knocked out, they had casualties. The Russians at that time were telling us they did not have forces there.
And — and so far, you know the casualties we don’t think that there are any Russians, but I’m not confirming that, I’m just telling that’s where we stand right now based on what’s been going back and forth. Why do I say it’s perplexing?
I have no idea why they would attack there, the forces were known to be there, obviously the Russians knew. We have always known that there are elements in this very complex battle space that the Russians did not have, I would call it, control of.
And they are also in the mix in terms of trying to maintain relations with certain people. So that’s what happened. It was self-defense, we are not getting engaged in the Syrian civil war. We are there to fight Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, that’s what those troops were doing in that position:.
Coordinating strikes against ISIS.
And why they chose to initiate this attack — you’ll have to ask them, I just — we don’t know.
Q: Mr. Secretary on that point, if I could just ask you. Senator McCain said today that he thinks this is evidence that you are in fact getting involved in a broader conflict.
SEC. MATTIS: No, this is self-defense. If we were getting involved in a broader conflict, then it would have had an initiative on our part. The fact is, we did not o the other side of the deconfliction line.
Q: Were you able to identify who were those pro-regime forces?
SEC. MATTIS: Why do I say not yet? We may — we’re trying to. We know they were pro-regime forces, but I can’t tell you are they an element that’s under a certain part of the regime — you know what I’m talking about, Iranian, Assad, Russian, mercenaries. I can’t tell you.
Q: There were no Russian contractors among them?
SEC. MATTIS: I don’t think — I think the Russians would’ve told us. If they — as long as they knew, you know, then they probably would’ve told us. Right now I don’t want to say what they were or were not, because I don’t have that kind of information.
Q: Just to follow up on Syria, sir, can you tell us how many forces were there on the other side that were …
SEC. MATTIS: About 300.
Q: What’s their disposition now …
SEC. MATTIS: They retreated — they retreated from that position. I believe that they’re right now west of the river.
Depending on which articles one reads, there were anywhere from 100-200 dead and more injured as well as this was a “Russian” black ops in order to take over a highly productive oilfield to a “US instigated attack that was meant to escalate fighting in Syria.
Maybe it was collusion or a big fat conspiracy of fake news so they let it go by? Maybe it was too horrific for the snowflake reporters?
It is amazing that most of MSM chose to let this pass quietly by in order to attack President Trump about everything from DACA to his infrastructure plans, praise the Obama’s portraits as “works of high art”, and focus on the Republican disinformation and castigation of the FBI; but, then it seems they simply can’t seem to handle real news. Such useless reporting when people believe that their narrative has to focus on liberal hysterics rather than real news is part of the real anger that most citizens have against MSM.
As to the attack, I am glad that President Trump has given the people on the ground there the ability to decide in real-time what actions to take. Our people should be able to defend themselves at all times. Were these idiots thinking that they would catch our soldiers unaware or unable to respond in the moment? Were they thinking a show of force with tanks and bombardments would not be met with fire? Were they merely driving to the oil derricks to tank up on crude oil?
Had it been the previous administration we would have seen a totally different scenario play out — our soldiers would have been dead just like Benghazi with no support. We would probably be in endless congressional investigations for another four years to figure out why our men were ignored.
Well done to President Trump for giving them back their ownership, Secretary Mattis for his leadership, and the troops stationed there for their expertise and willingness to get the job done…you have shown the gloves are off and that we are prepared to defend when attacked.