Former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton confirmed that the Pentagon’s program to train and equip the so-called “moderate” militants to fight inside Syria has failed.
In an interview with CBS News on Sunday, the frontrunner Democratic presidential candidate attempted to distance herself from the Obama administration’s policy in Syria, suggesting the overall US effort in the Arab country has been a “failure”.
“Where we are today is not where we were. And where we are today is that we have a failed program,” Clinton said, referring to the Pentagon’s $500 million project. “You heard the testimony, five people trained for half — $500, half-a-billion dollars — ha, ha, ha.”
However, she added, “I wouldn’t give up on train and equip, but I sure would push the Pentagon to take a hard look at why what has been done has been such a failure and what more we can do to support Kurdish fighters who are on the front line.”
On Wednesday, the chief of the US military campaign in Iraq and Syria acknowledged that the Pentagon program to “train and equip” militants in Syria has yielded only “four or five” fighters.
The remarks by Army Gen. Lloyd J. Austin III, head of US Central Command, before a Senate panel set off a wave of criticism from congressional lawmakers, who are wary of the Obama administration’s strategy towards the Daesh “ISIL” terrorist group.
Republican presidential candidate Rand Paul said on Sunday that Hillary Clinton’s actions while secretary of state contributed to the Syrian crisis.
“And I think, frankly, that Hillary Clinton bears some responsibility for the crisis,” Paul said.
“So, it looks like US policy now is, we’re not going to — train and equip has failed, so now we’re going to turn to the Russians for help. These are the same Russians who are busy in Ukraine doing things we don’t like them to do. The “Israelis” think that the Russians are involved with Hizbullah. Why are we turning to the Russians?” Clinton asked during her interview with CBS.
Source: Al-Ahed news