Published: Sun, January 20, 2019
Worldwide | By Angelina Lucas

Fort Campbell soldier among Americans killed in Syrian explosion

Fort Campbell soldier among Americans killed in Syrian explosion

"Jon was part of a long and inspiring list of Bowdoin graduates and community members who served and are still serving the common good in the US military", the letter states.

The three people who died in Wednesday's attack are Army Chief Warrant Officer 2 Jonathan R. Farmer, 37, of Boynton Beach, Fla.; Navy Chief Cryptologic Technician (Interpretive) Shannon M. Kent, 35, of upstate NY, and Scott A. Wirtz of St. Louis, Mo., a civilian who was assigned to the Defense Intelligence Agency as an operations support specialist.

Duncan Farmer said they knew Jonathan, a Green Beret, was in Syria, but "we didn't know exactly where". He served in six overseas combat tours and, in 2016, earned his commission from the Special Forces Warrant Officer Candidate School.

"The relationship between Saudi Arabia and the United States can not move forward until MBS has been dealt with", Graham said.

Shannon M. Kent, 35, was killed in Syria on Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2019.

Wirtz was a former Navy SEAL and he will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery, the AP reports.

The Islamic State still controls about one percent of the territory it once held in Iraq and Syria from where it is still able to carry out deadly attacks.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said last week he had discussed a safe zone with Mr Trump, which Turkey would set up inside Syria along their border.

Wednesday's attack showed a different reality.

"Propaganda-wise, ISIS remains extremely intact", said Raphael Gluck, co-founder of Jihadoscope, a company that monitors online activity by Islamist extremists.

Addressing a gathering of United States ambassadors in Washington, Vice President Mike Pence did not comment on the attack, saying only that the USA would ensure the defeat of IS, also known as Isis. Idlib, one area where Turkey enjoys influence in Northern Syria, has in recent weeks seen a rise in Al Qaeda (HTS) influence against the more moderate groups.

Kurds blasted the US withdrawal from Syria as a "betrayal", noting the move would leave them vulnerable to attacks by Turkey and could lead to a resurgence of ISIS.

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Ali Taher, who immigrated with his family to the USA, said his sister's smile would light up the room.

But Trump's announcement that he was withdrawing all US troops from the country immediately has left the Kurds feeling abandoned.

"Here's the good news", said Graham.

The troops were to meet members of the Manbij Military Council at the restaurant when the attack occurred, a witness told Reuters news agency.

The Pentagon said Mr Wirtz was a civilian from Missouri working as an operations support specialist at the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA). "That raises a lot of questions about the operational security procedures the Americans were practicing while there".

He opined that the USA should narrow its objectives in Syria to: "mitigating the risk of an Islamic State resurgence and preventing Iran from fortifying a military presence that threatens Israel". Previously, Jones said, ISIS faced off directly against Iraqi and Syrian security forces.

He was greeted by military staff at Dover Air Force Base after a short flight from Joint Base Andrews, but did not speak to reporters before entering his motorcade.

For now, however, it seems that President Trump will indeed remove American troops, while also attempting to get reassurances from Turkey that they will remain at bay, as well as from the SDF that they will continue to fight the remnants of IS in the region. He also lived and worked in San Diego for several years.

Not long after the attack Wednesday, Vice President Mike Pence repeated claims of the Islamic State group's defeat. ISIS fighters slipped back in for occasional attacks including a March 2018 bombing that killed American Master Sergeant Jonathan Dunbar and a British soldier. Mixed Kurdish-Arab Syrian forces liberated Manbij from IS in 2016 with help from the US -led coalition.

But Summers insisted that despite the mandate to get the 2,000 US troops in Syria back home, there was no timetable for their return.

Kobane is anxious about what the Turkish government will do to Kurdish fighters in Syria if USA forces pull out.

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