Biden’s pick who said US ‘owns’ Syrian oil territory draws flak

…from Press TV, Tehran

[ Editor’s Note: There is the ‘talking the talk’ and then ‘walking the talk’ political approach. Joe Biden now has a clean slate on the hypocrisy index, but how long will this last?

One of the biggest threats to US foreign policy is its hypocrisy. By that I mean our media has a steady flow of material on foreign actors interfering in US domestic affairs and how terrible that is.

But when the US is doing exactly that in other countries it magically becomes “pursuing our interest”, by some magical fairy dust that makes our crimes against humanity, for example, against the Syrian and Yemeni people a disgrace to everything that the US allegedly stands for.

We will be watching to see if Biden sleep walks into this policy contradiction and throws away the high moral ground that he is laying claim to. Throwing a few bones to the Palestinians, eg., “We will press Israel to not kill as many of you as they would like to”, will not be enough.

Does Biden think he can use the only leverage that will work with Israel to change its oppressive behavior? Yes, that would unleash the Israeli Lobby here to attack Biden, but he was elected on his promises to fix things.

If you are going to claim the good guy role you have to be the good guy, and not by platitudes and empty gestures.

The first step would be to roll back Israeli intelligence operations here, including the standdown the FBI has from going after the deeply embedded Israeli ops throughout America. These include support for the radical groups and their supporters inside US police forces ‘trained by Israelis,’ when we have experienced Americans to do that work for us.

Using our own talent would not be giving a non stop opening for the Israelis to recruit inside US law enforcement, a staple in offensive intelligence operations, including access to our databases from a huge number of entry points.

The US use of proxy terrorists in our current regime change operations will require a thorough airing, to see if Biden’s people want to justify supporting “moderate terrorists” like the Trump regime did and then tell us they are better than the Trump people… Jim W. Dean ]

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First published … January 30, 2021

Activists are outraged by US President Joe Biden’s pick to lead the Pentagon’s Middle East desk who previously admitted to Washington’s plundering of oil resources in Syria’s northeast controlled by US-backed Kurdish militants.

In an interview with the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) back in October 2019, Dana Stroul that had said the US military “owns” the resource-rich north eastern part of Syria controlled by the so-called Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and uses it as “leverage” in the conflict.

“The United States still had compelling forms of leverage on the table to shape an outcome that was more conducive and protective of US interests,” Stroul said then.

“The first one was the one-third of Syrian territory that was owned via the US military with its local partner, the Syrian Democratic Forces. Now this was a light footprint on the US military, only about a thousand troops over the course of the Syria Study Group’s report; and then the tens of thousands of forces, both Kurdish and Arab, under the Syria Democratic Forces.

And that one-third of Syria is the resource-rich – it’s the economic powerhouse of Syria. So where the hydrocarbons are, which obviously is very much in the public debate here in Washington these days, as well as the agricultural powerhouse.”

“We argued that it wasn’t just about this one-third of Syrian territory that the US military and our military presence owned, both to fight ISIS (Daesh) and also as leverage for affecting the overall political process for the broader Syria conflict,” the Biden’s new pick added.

Stroul’s comments were met with harsh responses from social media users and activists, who highlighted the plundering of Syria’s natural assets by the US administrations over the years.

Sarah Abdallah, an Independent Lebanese geopolitical commentator, said in a tweet that Washington is “proudly boasting about how the US military ‘owns’ the resource-rich part of Syria, the economic powerhouse of Syria, where the oil and wheat are.”

“Remember this the next time the US claims it wants to bring freedom & democracy to other countries,” she underlined.

Joe Biden’s pick to head the Pentagon’s Middle East Desk boasting about how the US military owns the oil-rich territory of #Syria, and will use it as leverage in its ongoing war.

Remember this the next time the US claims it wants to bring freedom & democracy to other countries.

— Sarah Abdallah (@sahouraxo) January 29, 2021


Proudly boasting about how the US military “owns” the resource-rich part of Syria, the economic powerhouse of Syria, where the oil and wheat are.

Also says the sanctions will continue and the US will prevent any reconstruction aid from entering Syria.

— Sarah Abdallah (@sahouraxo) January 29, 2021

Lina Arabi, a Syrian rights activist, posted on her Twitter page photos of Syrians rummaging through garbage as Americans occupy an oil field in the background.

“Take the oil” is not just a Trump thing, she wrote.

Look at those photos while you hear Biden’s pick to head Pentagon’s Middle East Desk, Dana Stroul, say the oil-rich territory is “owned” by the US military.

“Take the oil” is not just a Trump thing.

— Lina Arabi (@LinaArabii) January 29, 2021


These photos of Syrians rummaging through garbage as Americans occupy an oil field in the background..

— Lina Arabi (@LinaArabii) January 29, 2021

Syrian people have repeatedly demonstrated against the looting and smuggling of oil by the US-backed and Kurdish-led militants in the country’s north and east.

The looting of Syrian oil by the US was first confirmed during a Senate hearing exchange between South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham and the then-US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo last July.

During his testimony to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on July 30, Pompeo confirmed for the first time that an American oil company would begin work in northeastern Syria, which is controlled by SDF militants.

The SDF, a US-backed alliance of Kurdish militants operating against Damascus, currently controls areas in northern and eastern Syria.

The Syrian government has condemned any agreement inked to plunder the country’s natural resources, including Syrian oil and gas, with the sponsorship of the administration of former US President Donald Trump.

The ex-US president acknowledged several times that American military forces were in Syria for the Arab country’s oil.


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  1. Biden could become an heroic figure if he tried to, or better, succeeded, in disentangling the USA from its forever wars and brought the troops home, but he would need to build himself an effective bodyguard corps and nationalize the media and the tech giants first! Though he would be massively popular with the great mass of the People he would be bitterly resented and opposed by a very small but intimidatingly powerful minority. (And, I can confidently predict, that were he to do that, he would not be financed by Mrs Adelson.)

    • Soon he will be handed a list of target countries, up for regime change, economic hitmen or just plain picks. Though he will have to muscle a sorry independent country out there he does not seem as a war-time president.

  2. Of course they will, as an example, they see nothing wrong ith supporting the jews slaughter of the Palestinians. What could be worse ?

  3. I would normally think, “here’s the new boss, same as the old boss”. But, Trump was one of a kind. Israel will continue to pressure Syria and Biden may just go along and pick and choose his battles with Israel carefully.

  4. Well, if we look at the history, Biden’s record in foreign policy, first as Senator from 1973 until 2009 and later as vice-president until 2016 is not exactly the same as Cinderella to be exact….

  5. Biden will probably have a go at the Syrians. Perhaps he will try to perpetuate the Ukrainian crisis and put it back in focus. Always the Heartland, always.

  6. Great clever article dear Jim! I really appreciate your spontaneous sincerity that distinguishes intelligent minds and pure souls.
    I memorize this enlightening sentence of yours: “If you are going to claim the good guy role you have to be the good guy, and not by platitudes and empty gestures”.
    On intelligence matters it is useful to ask the McKinsey company that it has renewed the management of the American secret services in last years

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