Syria charges Washington with war crimes in siege of Raqqa


Syria charges Washington with war crimes in siege of Raqqa

Bill Van Auken

9 August 2017

In the past several days, US air strikes have claimed the lives of scores of Syrian civilians, including women and children, as the Pentagon and its proxy ground forces escalate the two-month-old siege of the ISIS-controlled city of Raqqa.

In the latest bombing of Raqqa nearly 50 civilians were killed or wounded, according to a monitoring group opposed to the Syrian government of President Bashar al-Assad. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, based in Britain, reported Tuesday that 13 civilians, including women and children, were killed over the previous 24-hour period. At least 30 more were wounded.

The US military acknowledged on Tuesday that its warplanes had carried out “35 strikes consisting of 42 engagements” against Raqqa over the previous 24 hours.

The city has been targeted relentlessly by both US warplanes and artillery, and missiles supplied by the Pentagon to the so-called Syrian Democratic Forces, the American proxy force dominated by the YPG Syrian Kurdish militia.

US imperialism is reprising in Raqqa the same kind of devastation and slaughter inflicted on the Iraqi city of Mosul, where as many as 40,000 civilians are believed to have been killed, while over 1 million Iraqis were driven from their homes. In both cities, the Pentagon is executing the tactics of “annihilation” enunciated by James “Mad Dog” Mattis, the recently retired Marine General serving as the Trump administration’s defense secretary.

This strategy was reiterated by Brett McGurk, US special envoy for the US-led anti-ISIS “coalition,” who said on Sunday that some 2,000 ISIS fighters remaining in the city “most likely will die in Raqqa.” He said nothing as to the fate of as many…

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