U.S. intelligence agencies earlier this month uncovered new evidence that al Qaeda-linked terrorists in Benghazi are training foreign jihadists to fight with Syria’s Islamist rebels, according to U.S. officials.
Ansar al-Sharia, the al Qaeda-affiliated militia that U.S. officials say orchestrated the Sept. 11 attacks on the U.S. diplomatic compound and a CIA facility in Benghazi, is running several training camps for jihadists in Benghazi and nearby Darnah, another port city further east, said officials who discussed some details of the camps on condition of anonymity.
The officials said the terror training camps have been in operation since at least May and are part of a network that funnels foreign fighters to Syrian rebel groups, including the Al-Nusra Front, the most organized of the Islamist rebel groups fighting the Bashar al-Assad regime in Damascus.
Helping the very people who killed the first U.S. Ambassador in 30 years, what could go wrong?
Meanwhile, the Brits are saying a strike on Syria is justified on humanitarian grounds.
The British government, facing public reluctance to commit forces to the Syrian conflict after years of bruising warfare in Iraq and Afghanistan, said Thursday that it could justify the use of force against Syria even if the United Nations declined to authorize a strike.
The justification would be on humanitarian grounds, to stop the suffering, the government said.
“The use of chemical weapons by the Syrian regime is a serious crime of international concern, as a breach of the customary international law prohibition on use of chemical weapons, and amounts to a war crime and a crime against humanity. However, the legal basis for military action would be humanitarian intervention; the aim is to relieve humanitarian suffering by deterring or disrupting the further use of chemical weapons,” the government said in a statement released Thursday.
Russia and China are pretty mad about a potential strike. Representatives from both countries walked out of a U.N. Security Council meeting yesterday. Congress isn’t pleased either and signatures on a bipartisan letter asking Obama to seek congressional approval before issuing a strike on Syria, are growing.