Leaked John Kerry Audio: Obama White House Wanted ISIS to Flourish in Syria
Obama and John Kerry were counting on ISIS being an ‘ally’ that would flourish and help them take down Assad. The Administration was calculating that the expansion ISIS in the region would force the Syrian president into negotiating with Washington. The conversation took place days after a brief cease-fire Kerry had spearheaded crumbled.
The details were leaked in audio from a secret meeting with members of the Syrian opposition.
Kerry admits in the meeting that the primary goal of the Obama’s administration in Syria was regime change. In order to achieve that goal, the White House wanted, allowed, and encouraged the ISIS terrorist group to grow.
“The reason Russia came in is because ISIS was getting stronger,” Mr. Kerry said on the recording. “ISIS was threatening the possibility of going to Damascus and so forth. We were watching. We saw that [ISIS] was growing in strength.”
Although some details of the meeting were previously reported, little attention has been paid to Kerry’s discussion about a strategy to use the ISIS terrorist group’s growing presence in Syria and Iraq as leverage to pressure Mr. Assad.
“And we know that this was growing, we were watching, we saw that DAESH [ISIS] was growing in strength, and we thought Assad was threatened,” Kerry said during the meeting.
“(We) thought, however,” he continued to say, “We could probably manage that Assad might then negotiate, but instead of negotiating he got Putin to support him.”
“I lost the argument for use of force in Syria,” Kerry concluded.
“It’s truly complicated,” Kerry said.
Portions of the audio were published at the time by the New York Times and CNN. Both outlets chose only some its part, reporting on certain aspects, and omitted the most damning comments made by Kerry.
Several of the Syrian participants said afterward that they had left the meeting demoralized, convinced that no further help would come from the Obama administration. One, a civil engineer named Mustafa Alsyofi, said Mr. Kerry had effectively told the Syrian opposition, “You have to fight for us, but we will not fight for you.”
Here is the audio in full.
Leaked recording of John Kerry private meeting with anti-Assad Syrian representatives at UN in Sept, removed by CNN https://t.co/J1iKEWhkvZ
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) January 4, 2017
At the time, the State Department declined to comment on the leaked audio beyond saying that Mr. Kerry “was grateful for the chance to meet with this group of Syrians, to hear their concerns firsthand and to express our continued focus on ending this civil war.”
The Obama State Department then forcefully denied any suggestion, multiple times, that the administration ever had a policy of tolerating or trying to use ISIS. Seems they lied.
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Another interesting tidbit, Kerry mentions Russia ignoring the International rule of law.
“The problem is we in the US care about international law and Russia does not. This is the reason why we can’t directly attack Assad forces. The only way we can directly intervene is if we have a UN Security Council resolution, or if our forces are under attack by theirs, or if we are invited by the LEGITIMATE regime… well… not saying here they’re “legitimate”… ok, Assad’s regime. The Russians were invited in and we’re not.”
The U.S. knew their presence in Syria was illegal. Kerry contradicted himself when he said that Russia does not care about international law. In fact Russia was legally allowed to operate in Syria at the invitation of the “legitimate” Syrian regime (admittedly, his tongue slipped at that point).