At a moment of widespread acknowledgement that the short-lived Islamic State is no longer a reality, … Defense Secretary Jim Mattis told reporters at the Pentagon that the US is preparing for a long term military commitment in Syria to fight ISIS … . “The enemy hasn’t declared that they’re done with the area yet, so we’ll keep fighting as long as they want to fight,” Mattis said. “We’re not just going to walk away right now before the Geneva process has traction.” …
Mattis was referring to the stalled peace talks in Geneva which some analysts have described as a complete failure (especially as the Geneva process unrealistically stipulates the departure of Assad) … .
Mattis’ declaration of an open ended military commitment … came the same day that the BBC confirmed that the US and its Kurdish SDF proxy (Syrian Democratic Forces) cut a deal with ISIS which allowed for the evacuation of possibly thousands (some say 4,000) of ISIS members and their families from Raqqa.
According to yesterday’s bombshell BBC report:
The BBC has uncovered details of a secret deal that let hundreds of Islamic State fighters and their families escape from Raqqa, under the gaze of the US and British-led coalition and Kurdish-led forces who control the city. A convoy included some of IS’s most notorious members and – despite reassurances – dozens of foreign fighters. Some of those have spread out across Syria, even making it as far as Turkey.
… ISIS terrorists being given free passage by coalition forces to leave Raqqa was a story which we and other outlets began to report last June, and which Moon of Alabama and Al-Masdar News exposed in detail a full month prior to the BBC report. … But it’s a familiar pattern by now: yesterday’s proxies become today’s terrorists, which return to being proxies again, all as part of justifying permanent US military presence on another nation’s sovereign territory. …