A C-130 aircraft drops its cargo over the town of Badrah, near the Iranian border, during a mission to supply the 3rd Border Transition Team. Photo by Sgt. Robert Baumgartner
Michael Weiss, Daily Beast: They’ve Got U.S. Guns. Can They Stop ISIS?
The Mu’tasim Brigade appears to be the very model of a fighting force the U.S. Defense Department can get behind—so why is it always running short of bullets and shells?
“During the siege, we were hit with 50 ISIS car bombs,” Mu’tasim Abbas told me. “Each car was filled with 10 tons of explosive.”
Abbas is the commander of the Mu’tasim Brigade (the name, he assures me, is just a coincidence), one of a mere handful of Syrian rebel groups backed by the U.S. Department of Defense to defeat ISIS.
“I’ve been fighting them for three and a half years,” Abbas said, in an often digitally shaky Skype conversation. “I joined the Pentagon’s ‘train and equip’ program a year and a half ago and started coordinating with the U.S. to get my men trained in Turkey and to call in U.S. airstrikes.”
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WNU Editor: I cannot help but sense that the someone else is calling the shots.