09.04.2021 Author: Vladimir Danilov

US Occupation Force Commits New Crimes in Syria


Ten years into the conflict, Syria is still struggling as the United States and its closest allies refuse to put an end to their illegal armed intervention. Under the pretext of fighting DAESH terrorists, as well as the Al-Qaeda-linked Al-Nusra Front (all three organizations are banned in the Russian Federation) they’ve been carrying out attacks against Syrian forces since 2014, that are coordinated by the United States Central Command.

For over seven year the US military has been operating in Syria illegally, since they have neither received an invitation from Damascus, nor a mandate from the UN Security Council. Back in 2017, it was announced that DAESH forces were vanquished in Syria and Iraq, although in some areas of those countries the fight against surviving militants is still carried on today. Now the political settlement, the reconstruction and the return of refugees is the primary objective for the Syrian government and all those who support it in its struggle against international terrorism.

However, to a large extent, those peaceful activities are being undermined by the US military. Officially, Damascus considers the US armed presence in Syria to be an illegal occupation, which is aggravated by the plunder of natural resources belonging to the Syrian people, as Damascus has repeatedly notified the UN Security Council through official channels.

These days the people of Syria are not alone in their concern about the attempts of the US forces to get “nice and comfortable” in somebody else’s house, especially since American units are occupying Syrian territories in defiance of the legitimate government of this country. As a matter of fact, back in 2017 the head of the United States Special Operations Command, general Raymond Thomas openly acknowledged the absence of any legal grounds for the United States military presence in Syria, while speaking at a security forum in Colorado.

Taking into account the involvement of not only the United States, but also Russia in the events in Syria, analysts of the Bundestag conducted a legal examination of the validity of the ongoing military presence of American and Russian forces in Syria. German experts have established that Russia’s actions are permissible, since they are carried out on the invitation of the government of president Assad, while the legality of US coalition operations (including those that are conducted with the participation of the Bundeswehr) are highly questionable, especially the attempts at arming and training Syrian rebels.

According to reports of the Syrian state news agency SANA, on the morning of March 23, the US military launched a transport convoy of 300 (!) fuel trucks carrying oil that was stolen from the Syrian oil fields. It didn’t take long before the convoy entered Iraqi territory through the illegal border crossing of Mahmoudia. In fact, the US armed forces have been moving dozens of convoys with stolen oil between Syria and Iraq every month. Moreover, the militants of the so-called Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), supported by the United States, are stealing 140,000 barrels of crude oil in the northeastern Syrian governorate of Al-Hasakah a day, as it was revealed by the governor Ghassan Halim Khalil last February. The official added those actions are being supported by the US military personnel stationed in Syria.

Syria’s Petroleum and Mineral Resources Minister Bassam Toumeh said on March 18 that the United States controls more than 90% of the crude oil reserves of Syria concentrated in the occupied northeastern part of the country. He noted that the costs of the total damage inflicted upon the Syrian oil sector by American piracy is estimated at the level of more than 92 billion dollars.

To disguise its criminal activities in Syria, Washington would launch a series of propaganda attacks against the governments of Syria and Russia, wrongly accusing them of being responsible for the humanitarian crisis that unravels in this war-torn Arab country. Through its actions, Washington is actively seeking to stage yet another “color revolution” and sow even more chaos across Syria. Those far-fetched and outright fake accusations reached the level when Politico accused Russia’s president Vladimir Putin of staging a humanitarian disaster in Syria!

However, Washington’s attempts at spreading blatant propaganda were once again thwarted by the humanitarian assistance that Russia provided to the legitimate Syrian government. In turn, Washington decided to show the “sincerity” of its newly-discovered concern about the deaths of thousands of Syrian civilians, as it sent humanitarian aid to Syria too. However, media platforms were soon to learn that this aid is actually going to the terrorists entrenched in the north-west of the country.

As for the role the United States played in orchestrating a humanitarian crisis in Syria, SANA has recently released data about US troops transporting stolen Syrian wheat from storage facilities of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) to northern Iraq, using a total of 38 trucks to fulfill the mission, while a week earlier, another 18 trucks crossed the Semalka border crossing carrying Syrian grain stolen from grain elevators.

It is noteworthy that the occupiers from the United States and the separatist fighters of the SDF have been acting like this for a long time. In particular, in January, they sent to Iraq a convoy consisting of refrigerated containers and 50 cars staffed with barley, wheat and products looted from Nama warehouses.

To make things worse, the US military does not allow local farmers to deliver grain to Syrian government procurement centers, forcing them to sell it at low prices. And in the spring of 2020, US aircraft would set fire to wheat crops in the north-east of Syria (in the southern part of the governorate of Al-Hasakah), circling at low altitude in the immediate vicinity of farmer houses, causing panic and fear among the civilian population.

According to the Syrian media and government sources, Washington regularly plunders Syrian crops and storage facilities, steals oil from the occupied wells in order to prolong the crisis and inflict more pain upon the Syrian government and its people. Such US activities can only be qualified as economic terrorism and a crime against humanity.

It is worth adding that the theft of Syrian oil and grain used to be the trademark of radical militant groups. Later on, an international coalition was assembled to oppose those activities. So, the people of Syria must be asking themselves where’s a new international coalition to save them from this scourge?

Vladimir Danilov, political observer, exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.

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