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  1. #1
    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    President's 'strategy' includes support for army working with al-Qaida

    Free Syrian Army
    WASHINGTON – As part of his “strategy” to eliminate ISIS, also known as ISIL, President Obama wants to “equip Syrian opposition fighters,” and while not mentioning the Free Syrian Army, or FSA, by name, that group, the group in which American journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff were embedded before they were captured by ISIS and beheaded, likely would be a recipient.

    But sources tell WND that articles by Foley and Sotloff had become increasingly critical of the so-called “moderate” FSA rebels, who were seeking the overthrow of the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

    It was the same FSA that ultimately turned Foley and Sotloff over to ISIS. A family spokesman told CNN’s Anderson Cooper Monday the FSA sold Sotloff to ISIS for between $25,000 and $50,000.

    The Obama administration already has spent millions of dollars in training and arms to the FSA, claiming it has gone to great pains to sift out jihadists from rebels who oppose Assad.

    “We have a Free Syrian Army and a moderate opposition that we have steadily been working with that we have vetted,” Obama recently told Chuck Todd, host of NBC’s “Meet the Press,” in an interview aired Sunday.

    On Wednesday night, while explaining his “strategy” to Americans, Obama said, “We will increase our support to forces fighting these terrorists on the ground.”

    And he added, “In Syria, we have ramped up our military assistance to the Syrian opposition. Tonight, I again call on Congress to give us additional authorities and resources to train and equip these fighters. In the fight against ISIL, we cannot rely on an Assad regime that terrorizes its people; a regime that will never regain the legitimacy it has lost. Instead, we must strengthen the opposition as the best counterweight against extremists like ISIL.”

    “They [Syrian opposition forces] have been on the defensive, not just from ISIS, but also from the Assad regime,” Obama told Todd. “And what you know, if you recall, at the West Point speech that I gave, I said, we need to put more resources into the moderate opposition.”

    Increasingly, however, fighters for the FSA are working more closely with al-Qaida-affiliated Jabhat al-Nusra, and now ISIS, also known as the Islamic State. ISIS is led by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi who seeks to establish a caliphate under strict Islamic law. He already has taken territory from northeast Syria into west and central Iraq.

    Weapons provided to the FSA from the U.S. and other countries have made their way into ISIS hands.

    “We are collaborating with the Islamic State and the Nusra Front by attacking the Syrian Army’s gatherings in Qalamoun,” said Bassel Idriss to Lebanon’s Daily Star.

    Idriss is a commander of a Free Syrian Army brigade.

    In turn, many al-Nusra fighters are joining ISIS’ ranks.

    FSA commanders admit collaboration

    In Lebanon, where concern is mounting over possible ISIS attacks in that country, FSA commanders admit to cooperating with jihadist groups in military operations along the Syrian-Lebanese border.

    FSA fighters appear to be joining ISIS and al-Nusra out of isolation and frustration on the battlefield, further radicalizing the fighters. The notion of combining their forces is meeting with increasing favor to achieve a greater goal.

    “We have reached a point where we have to collaborate with anyone against unfairness and injustice,” said FSA commander Abu Khaled.

    Unfavorable coverage

    Before being sold to ISIS, Foley and Sotloff were based in Turkey, near the Syrian border, which has been used as a base for jihadist groups to train and obtain military equipment to fight in Syria against Assad.

    Embedded with the FSA, journalists had published articles that did not always favor the Syrian opposition group.
    Sotloff, for example, wrote articles for Time magazine and other media outlets inside Turkey that reported strong support for Assad among the Turkish Alawite communities.

    His reporting reflected how jihadist fighters were being financed mainly by Saudi Arabia and Qatar, with help from Turkey.
    Separately, WND has reported on the assistance Turkey continues to give ISIS despite denials from the government
    In May 2013 – three months before what Sotloff family members claim was a sale by FSA operatives to ISIS – Sotloff reported Syrian rebels were found with chemical weapons, particularly Sarin poison gas.

    While the jihadists with Sarin were arrested, Turkish police quickly released them, showing support for al-Nusra.

    Sotloff couldn’t understand why the establishment media weren’t picking up on the development, since the conventional thinking, including at the policy level of the U.S. government, was that rebels didn’t have such a capability and only the Syrian government had Sarin.

    On May 30, 2013, Sotloff tweeted: “#JebhalaNusra stocking up on #Sarin in #Turkey. Not sure why the mainstream media hasn’t picked up on this yet:…”

    One of Sotloff’s last articles may have been the most critical of FSA. It was titled “In Aleppo Bread Lines and Disenchantment with the FSA.”

    In the article, he quoted one Aleppo resident as saying about the FSA: “They have already destroyed our country.”

    Like Sotloff, freelance journalist Foley was critical of the FSA. He had cited a New York Times article that referred to al-Qaida presence within the FSA. At the time, he saw a flag he didn’t recognize. It turned out to be a flag of ISIS, taken with a group of FSA fighters.

    In his tweet, Foley referred to the flag and included a picture: “… didn’t know black flag meant #alqaeda necessarily, can also be misc. jihadis? Al Qaeda Role Syria,” followed by this picture:

    Often, Foley wrote for the Global Post, which published one of his critical FSA articles on Oct. 16, 2012, titled, “Syria: Rebels losing support among civilians in Aleppo.”

    “Aleppo, a city of about 3 million people, was once the financial heart of Syria. As it continues to deteriorate, many civilians here are losing patience with the increasingly violent and unrecognizable opposition – one that is hampered by infighting and a lack of structure, and deeply infiltrated by both foreign fighters and terrorist groups,” Foley wrote.

    “The rebels in Aleppo are predominantly from the countryside, further alienating them from the urban crowd that once lived here peacefully, in relative economic comfort and with little interference from the authoritarian government of President Bashar al-Assad.”

    ‘ISIS was actively hunting down reporters’

    In a Facebook account, Julian Reichelt who was in a safehouse in Syria at the time of Sotloff’s capture writing for the German paper Bild, said there were ISIS spotters working in the Turkish town of Kilis.

    He said that most reporters had begun to give up covering Syria “because ISIS was actively hunting down reporters.”
    He said that in August 2013, the month that Sotloff was taken by ISIS, the “moderate opposition, known as the Free Syrian Army, was getting hammered by regime airstrikes and shelling and somewhat jealously eyeing the emerging Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, which was well-equipped with guns, ammo and money from wealthy Gulf donors.”

    “Stay safe,” Reichelt wrote in his Facebook account, “(the expression) ‘don’t wanna see you in some YouTube video’ had become a common, now darkly prophetic, line between parting journalists in the hotels on the Turkish side of the border.

    “We all knew that on the other side (in Syria), in the town of Azaz, ISIS had established a dangerous presence, roaming the streets in pickup trucks watching all the strategic intersections one had to pass to drive on to besieged Aleppo.”

    As it turns out, Reichelt said his handler advised him that it was unsafe in Syria, since another journalist had just been kidnapped.

    “What’s his name?” Reichelt asked.

    After some 30 minutes of checking, Reichelt’s handler came back with the answer – “Zotlof.”


  2. #2
    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    Heart of Dixie

    Syrian boys run for cover in Aleppo on Oct. 9, 2012. (Zac Baillie/AFP/Getty Images)

    James Foley
    October 16, 2012 06:15
    Subscribe to James Foley on Facebook

    Syria: Rebels losing support among civilians in Aleppo

    As Aleppo continues to deteriorate, many residents are losing patience with an increasingly violent and unrecognizable opposition.

    ALEPPO, Syria — Behind the mansion they were occupying, a group of half-naked rebels whooped with joy as they cannonballed into the murky, half-filled swimming pool.

    It was July in the small town of Anadan, about 10 miles from Aleppo, Syria's largest city. Anadan was a ghost town, deserted except for the Free Syrian Army and the sounds of the near constant barrage of regime shelling.

    The junior commander, an illiterate 24-year old, joked that while the war raged all around it, the people of Aleppo were only concerned about their barbecues. He swore the rebels scrabbling through the countryside would soon make their way to Aleppo. He promised Aleppo would burn.

    Three months later, Aleppo is on fire. The 1,000-year-old market has been gutted, and the rebel-controlled west lies in ruins. Last week's massive suicide car bombings, which leveled blocks of the government center, left craters some 10 feet deep.

    More from GlobalPost: Complete Coverage from Inside Syria

    Aleppo, a city of about 3 million people, was once the financial heart of Syria. As it continues to deteriorate, many civilians here are losing patience with the increasingly violent and unrecognizable opposition — one that is hampered by infighting and a lack of structure, and deeply infiltrated by both foreign fighters and terrorist groups.

    The rebels in Aleppo are predominantly from the countryside, further alienating them from the urban crowd that once lived here peacefully, in relative economic comfort and with little interference from the authoritarian government of President Bashar al-Assad.

    “The terrorism here in Syria is spreading, and the government has to do something about it,” said Mohamed Kabal, a 21-year-old university student.

    “The people in Syria must have an iron hand to rule them, otherwise we will eat each other,” he said, unconcerned that the rebel sympathizers nearby might hear him. “If the government is gone we will have a civil war that will never end.”

    As suicide bombers become the rebels' most effective weapon — illustrating both their desperation against Assad's air power and the growing presence of insurgents, both local and foreign, who once fought the US occupation in Iraq — the regime’s attacks too are getting more vicious.

    The day after the suicide strike destroyed the government center, the Syrian army retaliated by launching an air assault on a school housing refugees. Witnesses called it a massacre, 10 civilians killed and about 60 wounded.

    More from GlobalPost: Inside Syria: One hospital's story

    Both attacks leave indelible marks on the population: a child dead on a hospital table, a wounded girl in her father’s arms, a mother screaming, a dazed 12-year old asking if the sheet on the ground covers his father.

    Through it all, though, some in Aleppo still support the rebels. Hamza, a medical school graduate who treats wounded fighters on the front line said he thought the Free Syrian Army made the right choice to detonate the car bombs. It was an area where regime forces were centered, he said.

    “And those who say there were civilians there, I say that we are in a war and you must not blame the FSA for bombing the Air Force Intelligence building, for instance, because no civilians should be there,” he said.

    It’s the same argument the regime uses when it shells neighborhoods it believes are sympathetic to the Free Syrian Army. Any civilians still in these areas, it claims, must be supporting the “terrorists” and are legitimate targets.

    Faez Shoaip, 63, used to be a taxi driver in Brooklyn. He returned home to Aleppo eight years ago and now is worried about the direction of the conflict.

    “We don’t like Bashar, we don’t the like regime. We want them to go out. But there is an easier way. Kill everybody? Destroy the country just to change the regime? It’s too much,” he said, shaking his head.

    More from GlobalPost: Life and death in Aleppo (PHOTOS)

    Faez and his neighbors are tiring of the rebel leaders on the ground. And they are weary of the shells falling all around them. They say they are frustrated that they have lost everything in a matter of months. The frustration shows. Shopkeepers whisper their discontent. Residents wave rebels away as they drive past.

    While Faez visited his children in Idlib province last month, one rebel group broke down his apartment door and set up shop.
    “They use everything. They changed my house into a camp,” he said. “They make a mess of everything." When he complained they were wearing his clothes and destroying his property, the young rebel commander told him: “This is a time of war.”
    It isn’t just civilians who are tiring of the rebellion. Some who have fought from the beginning have had their faith shaken as well.

    Abu Sayed has fought hard for the revolution in Aleppo, his hometown. During the holy month of Ramadan in August, he fasted with a bullet hole healing in his thigh. He continued to fight, limping across sniper alleys on the front lines of the city.
    Eventually his family’s apartment was overrun by the regime and he began sleeping in a mosque. Three weeks later during a mortar attack, shrapnel ripped though his neck. When he woke up, he saw his friends above him, saying, “Abu Sayed was a good man.”

    When he lost consciousness again, he dreamed his 17-year-old brother, Hamdino — who was shot through the heart during an earlier protest — was holding his hand, guiding him somewhere. He brother then stopped and told Sayed he had to go back.
    As Sayed recounted his near-death experience, he smoked a cigarette and tears welled in his eyes. Patches of gauze were still taped to his neck.

    “You know one of the FSA leaders from Maraa?” he asked. “They go into the free area when there’s fighting in Salahhadin. I see them taking screens, computers, telephones, everything they can lay their hands on.”

    He said he's seen civilians executed after rebels recklessly accuse them of being mercenaries for the regime.

    “I saw one beaten to death,” he said. “The FSA didn’t check their facts, and now he’s dead. I know the man. He was 46. He has five children.”

    “We have lost the civilians now,” he said, exhaling smoke.

  3. #3
    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    In Aleppo, Bread Lines and Disenchantment with the FSA

    February 5th, 2013Steven Sotloff

    ALEPPO -- Every night thousands of people gather outside Aleppo’s bakeries to buy their daily bag of bread. Syria's civil war has transformed the formerly routine transaction into a six hour process.

    Disruptions in flour and gas deliveries have created bottlenecks that managers cannot solve. Customers jockey for position, a scene reminiscent of a Texas cattle auction.

    But when a fighter from the Free Syrian Army barges into the crowd, people around him scatter like bowling pins.

    As he darts to the head of the line, men who have been waiting for more than four hours jeer. “What makes them so special?” asks Muhammad Sharqi, also in line. “They cause our suffering and now get to exploit it for their own ends?”

    What's clear is that as the grisly battle for Aleppo enters its six month, its residents are slowly losing faith in the FSA.

    The stalemate on the front lines has turned some against the group. But for many, it is the FSA’s dismal track record with society that has them snickering at the sight of every rebel vehicle that blows through their neighborhood, seizing, residents say, the choicest culinary goods and harassing civilians who cross them.

    Meanwhile, widespread shortages in basic necessities – including heating oil and gas, for which people are desperate as temperatures plummet – have fueled a thriving black market, where prices have skyrocketed.

    The FSA first marched into Aleppo promising to end the arbitrary arrests carried out by the regime of President Bashar al-Assad and to restore public order after months of fighting. But residents say it has proved ill-equipped to solving such seemingly simple problems as distributing bread and fuel.

    Their missteps have many civilians in this battered city complaining about the opposition fighters.
    Sharqi, a 46-year-old plumber, was one of many Aleppines who welcomed the rebels when the local Tawhid Brigade arrived in the besieged city in July.

    “We organized food deliveries for them at the front,” he says. “We were so happy to finally be doing something for the revolution. But after a few months, we saw who these people really were.”

    What he saw were bands of villagers from the countryside pilfering cars and stripping buildings. Others complain of being financially extorted by FSA units.

    Although rare, cases of civilian ransom kidnappings have struck fear in the wealthier classes, persuading them to flee to neighboring countries.

    “It got to the point where we thought they were fighting to get all the property they could instead of fighting to bring down the regime,” lamented Sharqi, standing in the bread line.

    Though some Aleppines were initially willing to overlook the FSA's thieving from the affluent, they drew the line at abusing state resources like grain. Some FSA groups have sold grain abroad, driving up the price in Syria.

    The shortages have strained bread production at bakeries, causing the six hour waits that exasperate everyone.

    “They are not building tanks in the bakeries,” says 41-year-old customer Hamdi Yusuf. “It’s just bread. What’s so difficult in making a few loaves every day?”

    The half dozen brigades currently fighting in Aleppo each have several thousand fighters under their command. But as more civilians joined the rebel units with each battlefield success, they say fighters with ulterior motives infiltrated the FSA.

    Even more damaging than the rebels’ failing managerial skills are their physical abuses. Civilians say their constant harassment – from arbitrary arrests to humiliating people at vehicle checkpoints – has the city’s residents on edge.

    “My brother in law was stopped at a nighttime checkpoint,” says 37-year-old mobile phone store owner Sadiq Fahmi. “They slapped him because he did not have his identification papers. Is that how they intend to rule? If so, I don’t want to be a part of their state.”

    The FSA is doing far worse to regime supporters. “Armed opposition groups have subjected detainees to ill-treatment and torture and committed extrajudicial or summary executions,” Human Rights Watch wrote in a September 2012 press release. The organization reported that it could verify at least a dozen executions of regime fighters by FSA units.

    Such stories have residents believing that a change of power will leave them no better off.

    “They do the same things as the regime,” says carpenter Mahmud al-Hamawi, 34. “Only they do it under the banner of revolution and freedom. But we know better. These fighters are all just little Bashars.”

    The FSA’s battlefield policies have also drawn the condemnation of the United Nations.
    <div source='picture' id='5326' flow='alignright' />

    Last April, Secretary General Ban Ki-moon told the Security Council that the UN has received credible allegations of the recruitment and use of children by armed opposition, including the FSA.

    Though residents of Aleppo note that the FSA has not yet recruited youths in their neighborhoods, they are not surprised by the allegations.

    “These guys will do anything to win, even if it means destroying our youth.” says grocer Anwar Khuli, 51, throwing a disdainful look at a group of fighters buying munchkin size cups of coffee at a cafe nearby. “They have already destroyed our country.”

    Sentiments like these reflect the disappointment that many of Aleppo’s residents harbor towards a group that held so much promise for them when it first emerged. With each passing day, they say, their hopes are dashed by the reality that the FSA is a seriously flawed organization. And with every gaffe and abuse, the luster of Assad’s tainted regime grows brighter.
    Last edited by Newmexican; 09-15-2014 at 11:33 AM.

  4. #4
    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    U.S.-Approved Arms for Libya Rebels Fell Into Jihadis’ Hands


    Published: December 5, 2012

    WASHINGTON — The Obama administration secretly gave its blessing to arms shipments to Libyan rebels from Qatar last year, but American officials later grew alarmed as evidence grew that Qatar was turning some of the weapons over to Islamic militants, according to United States officials and foreign diplomats.

    No evidence has emerged linking the weapons provided by the Qataris during the uprising against Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi to the attack that killed four Americans at the United States diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, in September.

    But in the months before, the Obama administration clearly was worried about the consequences of its hidden hand in helping arm Libyan militants, concerns that have not previously been reported. The weapons and money from Qatar strengthened militant groups in Libya, allowing them to become a destabilizing force since the fall of the Qaddafi government.

    The experience in Libya has taken on new urgency as the administration considers whether to play a direct role in arming rebels in Syria, where weapons are flowing in from Qatar and other countries.

    The Obama administration did not initially raise objections when Qatar began shipping arms to opposition groups in Syria, even if it did not offer encouragement, according to current and former administration officials. But they said the United States has growing concerns that, just as in Libya, the Qataris are equipping some of the wrong militants.

    The United States, which had only small numbers of C.I.A. officers in Libya during the tumult of the rebellion, provided little oversight of the arms shipments. Within weeks of endorsing Qatar’s plan to send weapons there in spring 2011, the White House began receiving reports that they were going to Islamic militant groups. They were “more antidemocratic, more hard-line, closer to an extreme version of Islam” than the main rebel alliance in Libya, said a former Defense Department official.

    The Qatari assistance to fighters viewed as hostile by the United States demonstrates the Obama administration’s continuing struggles in dealing with the Arab Spring uprisings, as it tries to support popular protest movements while avoiding American military entanglements. Relying on surrogates allows the United States to keep its fingerprints off operations, but also means they may play out in ways that conflict with American interests.

    “To do this right, you have to have on-the-ground intelligence and you have to have experience,” said Vali Nasr, a former State Department adviser who is now dean of thePaul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, part of Johns Hopkins University. “If you rely on a country that doesn’t have those things, you are really flying blind. When you have an intermediary, you are going to lose control.”

    He said that Qatar would not have gone through with the arms shipments if the United States had resisted them, but other current and former administration officials said Washington had little leverage at times over Qatari officials. “They march to their own drummer,” said a former senior State Department official. The White House and State Department declined to comment.

    During the frantic early months of the Libyan rebellion, various players motivated by politics or profit — including an American arms dealer who proposed weapons transfers in an e-mail exchange with a United States emissary later killed in Benghazi — sought to aid those trying to oust Colonel Qaddafi.

    But after the White House decided to encourage Qatar — and on a smaller scale, the United Arab Emirates — to ship arms to the Libyans, President Obama complained in April 2011 to the emir of Qatar that his country was not coordinating its actions in Libya with the United States, the American officials said. “The president made the point to the emir that we needed transparency about what Qatar was doing in Libya,” said a former senior administration official who had been briefed on the matter.

    About that same time, Mahmoud Jibril, then the prime minister of the Libyan transitional government, expressed frustration to administration officials that the United States was allowing Qatar to arm extremist groups opposed to the new leadership, according to several American officials. They, like nearly a dozen current and former White House, diplomatic, intelligence, military and foreign officials, would speak only on the condition of anonymity for this article.

    The administration has never determined where all of the weapons, paid for by Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, went inside Libya, officials said. Qatar is believed to have shipped by air and sea small arms, including machine guns, automatic rifles, and ammunition, for which it has demanded reimbursement from Libya’s new government. Some of the arms since have been moved from Libya to militants with ties to Al Qaeda in Mali, where radical jihadi factions have imposed Shariah law in the northern part of the country, the former Defense Department official said. Others have gone to Syria, according to several American and foreign officials and arms traders.

    Although NATO provided air support that proved critical for the Libyan rebels, the Obama administration wanted to avoid getting immersed in a ground war, which officials feared could lead the United States into another quagmire in the Middle East.

    As a result, the White House largely relied on Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, two small Persian Gulf states and frequent allies of the United States. Qatar, a tiny nation whose natural gas reserves have made it enormously wealthy, for years has tried to expand its influence in the Arab world. Since 2011, with dictatorships in the Middle East and North Africa coming under siege, Qatar has given arms and money to various opposition and militant groups, chiefly Sunni Islamists, in hopes of cementing alliances with the new governments. Officials from Qatar and the emirates would not comment.

    After discussions among members of the National Security Council, the Obama administration backed the arms shipments from both countries, according to two former administration officials briefed on the talks.

    American officials say that the United Arab Emirates first approached the Obama administration during the early months of the Libyan uprising, asking for permission to ship American-built weapons that the United States had supplied for the emirates’ use. The administration rejected that request, but instead urged the emirates to ship weapons to Libya that could not be traced to the United States.

    “The U.A.E. was asking for clearance to send U.S. weapons,” said one former official. “We told them it’s O.K. to ship other weapons.”

    For its part, Qatar supplied weapons made outside the United States, including French- and Russian-designed arms, according to people familiar with the shipments.

    But the American support for the arms shipments from Qatar and the emirates could not be completely hidden. NATO air and sea forces around Libya had to be alerted not to interdict the cargo planes and freighters transporting the arms into Libya from Qatar and the emirates, American officials said.

    Concerns in Washington soon rose about the groups Qatar was supporting, officials said. A debate over what to do about the weapons shipments dominated at least one meeting of the so-called Deputies Committee, the interagency panel consisting of the second-highest ranking officials in major agencies involved in national security. “There was a lot of concern that the Qatar weapons were going to Islamist groups,” one official recalled.

    The Qataris provided weapons, money and training to various rebel groups in Libya. One militia that received aid was controlled by Adel Hakim Belhaj, then leader of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, who was held by the C.I.A. in 2004 and is now considered a moderate politician in Libya. It is unclear which other militants received the aid.

    “Nobody knew exactly who they were,” said the former defense official. The Qataris, the official added, are “supposedly good allies, but the Islamists they support are not in our interest.”

    No evidence has surfaced that any weapons went to Ansar al-Shariah, an extremist group blamed for the Benghazi attack.
    The case of Marc Turi, the American arms merchant who had sought to provide weapons to Libya, demonstrates other challenges the United States faced in dealing with Libya. A dealer who lives in both Arizona and Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates, Mr. Turi sells small arms to buyers in the Middle East and Africa, relying primarily on suppliers of Russian-designed weapons in Eastern Europe.

    In March 2011, just as the Libyan civil war was intensifying, Mr. Turi realized that Libya could be a lucrative new market, and applied to the State Department for a license to provide weapons to the rebels there, according to e-mails and other documents he has provided. (American citizens are required to obtain United States approval for any international arms sales.)
    He also e-mailed J. Christopher Stevens, then the special representative to the Libyan rebel alliance. The diplomat said he would “share” Mr. Turi’s proposal with colleagues in Washington, according to e-mails provided by Mr. Turi. Mr. Stevens, who became the United States ambassador to Libya, was one of the four Americans killed in the Benghazi attack on Sept. 11.
    Mr. Turi’s application for a license was rejected in late March 2011. Undeterred, he applied again, this time stating only that he planned to ship arms worth more than $200 million to Qatar. In May 2011, his application was approved. Mr. Turi, in an interview, said that his intent was to get weapons to Qatar and that what “the U.S. government and Qatar allowed from there was between them.”

    Two months later, though, his home near Phoenix was raided by agents from the Department of Homeland Security. Administration officials say he remains under investigation in connection with his arms dealings. The Justice Department would not comment.

    Mr. Turi said he believed that United States officials had shut down his proposed arms pipeline because he was getting in the way of the Obama administration’s dealings with Qatar. The Qataris, he complained, imposed no controls on who got the weapons. “They just handed them out like candy,” he said.

    David D. Kirkpatrick and Kareem Fahim contributed reporting from Cairo.

    It seems the White house went "rogue" on supplying weapons to Islamic fighters and Qatar and UAE played him for all he as worth....

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