As regular readers are no doubt aware, the US has done a lot of really silly things over the course of the last four or so years in Syria.
While there’s little question that the rise of ISIS takes the top spot in the “absurd outcomes” category, there are several legitimate contenders for runner-up. There’s The Pentagon’s $500 million “train and equip” program for instance, which was designed to field some 5,400 fearsome warriors with a mandate to fight Islamic State but only ended up yielding “four or five” after the rest of the group (which only amounted to 16 at the “high” point over the summer) died, got captured, defected, or ended up lost in the desert.
As amusing as that effort most certainly was, an even more ridiculous strategy emerged after the train and equip program was officially mothballed in October (we say it was mothballed, but you should note that the NDAA Obama just signed still allows for a half billion in funding for the Syrian opposition). Out of options, and with the Russians bearing down on the FSA and everyone else from the sky, the US decided to begin airdropping tons of ammo and weapons on pallets into the middle of the desert.
“U.S. air drops of weapons and ammunition intended for the Syrian Free Army, which is fighting Assad’s regime, could end up in the hands of Islamic State instead,” Vladimir Putin noted in mid-October, after calling the West “oatmeal heads” for their criticism of Russia’s involvement in…