Trump Must Be On Alert For 'False Flag' Operation In Syria - Ex-Pentagon Adviser

WASHINGTON (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 19th October, 2019) Elements within or tied to the US foreign policy establishment could try to engineer a false flag operation in Syria to sabotage President Donald Trump's exit plan along with reelection prospects, former Pentagon adviser Karen Kwiatkowski told Sputnik.

The United States and Turkey reached a five-day ceasefire agreement this week to extract Kurdish troops from north Syria. On Friday, Trump said besides minor sniper and mortar fire Turkish and Kurdish forces had abided the ceasefire deal in the early hours.

"False flag operations, always a risk in this chaotic and poorly reported region, may be used to push an agenda that is opposed to the current Trump position, and his re-election," Kwiatkowski, who is also a retired US Air Force lieutenant colonel, said. "This ceasefire makes sense, and also suggests some respect for the sovereignty of Damascus, avoiding sanctions on Turkey and ensuring that the troops leave. It sounds almost too good to be true, and this situation needs to be watched closely."

The US foreign policy establishment remains deeply opposed to even Trump's extremely minor troop withdrawal this month from Kurdish-controlled enclaves in northeastern Syria, Kwiatkowski observed.

"The so-called deep state and its mainstream US media propagandists are frantically angry at Trump for withdrawing 1,500 or so troops from northern Syria - troops he has been trying to withdraw unsuccessfully for over a year," she said.

Hawks have seen the Kurdish separatists and the Islamic State terrorist group (banned in Russia) as useful resources in keeping Syria and other parts of the region destabilized, Kwiatkowski explained.

"This aspect of the US government - including large parts of the CIA and the Defense Establishment and 'Israel First' advocacy centers and mainstream US media - does not wish to save face. They wish to reverse the policy of US troop withdrawal [and] the overall direction of US disengagement," the former defense adviser said.

The Syrian Kurds now need to engage in dialogue with Damascus because a US-supported Kurdish state seems to be off the table for the moment, she added.

However, Syria and Turkey would not go to war over the Kurds and they shared a mutual aversion to seeing a new Kurdish state carved out of both their territories, Kwiatkowski said.

Nevertheless, dangers remained of a wider conflict erupting in the region, Kwiatkowski warned.

"A larger war could ensue if the US CIA and Department of Defense, Israel and Saudi Arabia... feel that the time is now right to finish off Syria, start a larger war with Iran, and/or put Turkey in its place," she said.

Trump should actively publicize the CIA and US policy origins of the Islamic State as an offshoot of Al Qaeda in Iraq, immediately end US covert and media support for the remaining IS forces and publicly disavow any residual US policy of regime change in Syria and Iran, Kwiatkowski concluded.