6 Major Players Who Turned the Syrian Crisis Into a Devastating Proxy War Nightmare


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1. United States

The looming military strikes on Syria by the U.S. would be the most forceful intervention yet from the world’s superpower. But even without the strikes, the U.S. has long played an outside role during the Syrian civil war.

President Barack Obama first showed his hand in 2011 [3], when he said, “the time has come for President Assad to step aside.” By the next year, the CIA was training Syrian rebels in Jordan [4], a longstanding ally of the U.S. now playing an important role as a base for the rebels and a haven for millions of refugees.

CIA agents have trained a small group of FSA fighters with anti-tank and anti-aircraft weapons in the hopes of helping American-vetted rebels gain an upper hand in the civil war.
And in March 2013, the New York Times reported [5]that “with help from the C.I.A., Arab governments and Turkey have sharply increased their military aid to Syria’s opposition fighters.”

The training of rebels represented a direct break from past U.S. dealings with the Assad regime.
Before the uprising emerged, the U.S. had a complicated relationship with Syria which included cooperation on anti-terrorism, sanctioning the regime and meeting with the Assads to encourage U.S.-backed reform measures.

But the U.S. training of the rebels made only a small impact. Perhaps the most effective fighting force within Syria has been the Jabhat al-Nusra front, an Al-Qaeda linked group.

Trepidation about U.S. arms falling into the hands of jihadist groups that could threaten Israel and other U.S. allies has tempered the willingness to open the arms floodgates. Although the U.S. Congress authorized arming the rebels earlier this year, much of the equipment hasn’t reached the rebels.

Now, the alleged chemical weapons attack on a Syrian suburb seems to have overridden past qualms about not getting in too deep.

Cruise missile strikes may not shift the battlefield, but it could embroil the U.S. further into the war while doing little to calm the refugee and humanitarian crises.


good solid link -everyone needs to know these basics, if you are concerned with Syria