Syrian Kurds armed with sensitive US weaponry - media
Syrian Kurdish fighters are newly armed with sophisticated American combat equipment as they close in on the ISIS's stronghold in Raqqa, weaponry the Pentagon says it is barred from providing to those forces, Military Times reported.
The gear includes U.S.-manufactured night-vision goggles, rifles and advanced optics among other items, the same as that used by American special operations forces and the foreign commando units they train. In northern Syria, where about 900 American advisers are supporting separate coalitions comprising thousands of Kurdish and Arab conscripts, it’s been fielded by the People’s Protection Unit. The militia, widely known as the YPG, has emerged as the U.S. military’s most trustworthy and capable proxy on the ground.
While the Pentagon acknowledges arming some allies inside Syria, typically with AK-47 assault rifles and other basic Russian-made weapons, U.S. military officials denied providing anything to the YPG and offered only ambiguous responses when asked by Military Times how such sensitive equipment was obtained by the group’s commando force, called Yekineyen Anti-terror (YAT). It was likely funneled to them through “other means by other sources,” a defense official said, insisting on anonymity because the matter remains fraught with diplomatic implications.