Washington Post: ‘We’re not in perfect control’: U.S. plans operation against Islamic State in Syria despite obstacles
The Obama administration is racing to settle questions that could scuttle a planned offensive against the Islamic State in the Syrian city of Raqqa that Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter has said will begin “within weeks . . . and not many weeks.”
Senior administration officials have attributed the newly described urgency to Raqqa’s symbolic role as the “capital of the caliphate” claimed by the militants and intelligence indicating that it is the center of Islamic State planning for terrorist attacks in Europe and the United States.
But the officials acknowledged a wealth of problems that could derail the offensive, including the need to gather and train additional Syrian forces. More ominously, they cite the explosive dynamics between two allies: Turkey and Syrian Kurdish fighters, who form the bulk of the existing offensive force.
“This is one of the situations in which we have contacts and influence over all the actors. But we’re not in perfect control,” said one of several officials who discussed the operation on the condition of anonymity to speak candidly about its planning and potential pitfalls.
Read more ....
WNU Editor: To begin .... U.S. allies in this part of Syria are sworn enemies .... Turkish military forces on one side, Kurdish forces on the other. And with Turkey's insistence that Kurdish forces cannot be involved in any operation on Raqqa will all but insure that no one will be launching any attacks on this important city in the short to medium term.