[Ed. – Hint for actual “secret” visits: don’t invite reporters and tell everyone about them. This has the aura of another Obama orchestrated meme-planting event: no apparent purpose; stilted and weird language from a military commander who has nothing meaningful to say because it’s a stupid mission; but the optics are what a progressive imagines “hoi polloi” will think of as really wow-dude and cool. Rick Moran patiently does some speculating. I don’t think there’s anything freighted here. We’re so screwed in Syria, and this isn’t going to change that.]
An Associated Press reporter accompanied US CENTCOM commander General Joseph Votel to a secret location in Syria where the general visited some of the 200 US military advisors who are training Syrian Kurds and Arabs to fight Islamic State.
Votel is the highest ranking American to visit Syria.
Votel’s motives for visiting American forces were to highlight the work they are doing in training anti-ISIS fighters. There are no American combat troops in Syria, but US special forces are thought to be assisting Kurdish fighters on the battlefield.
Votel said he brought reporters with him because, “We don’t have anything to hide. I don’t want people guessing about what we’re doing here. The American people should have the right to see what we’re doing here.”
Votel flew into northern Syria from Iraq, where he had conferred on Friday with U.S. and Iraqi military commanders. In Syria he met with U.S. military advisers working with Syrian Arab fighters and consulted with leaders of the Syrian Democratic Forces, an umbrella group of Kurdish and Arab fighters supported by the U.S. …
Aides said Votel’s flight into Syria was the first made in daylight by U.S. forces, who have about 200 advisers on the ground.