US mulls keeping troops in Syria to counter, attack Iranians in 'self-defense': Report

Washington is considering a plan to illegally maintain a force contingent at a US military base in Syria to “combat” Iran’s influence in the region and even strike Iranians passing by near the base while purportedly claiming “self-defense,” despite a presidential order to pull out all US forces from the country, a report said.

Given the “strategic importance” of the al-Tanf garrison – located near Syria’s eastern border with Jordan – “the US government is considering a plan to keep at least some forces there,” US-based Foreign Policy news outlet reported Friday, quoting military sources that further insisted that a US presence at the base “helps to block Iran’s hope” for what they described as “a continuous land bridge from Iran through Iraq and Syria to Lebanon… that could threaten Israeli.”

“Al-Tanf is a critical element in the effort to prevent Iran from establishing a ground line of communications from Iran through Iraq through Syria to southern Lebanon in support of Lebanese Hezbollah,” said one former senior US military commander as quoted in the report.

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