Western weapons falls into the hands of terrorists

by Sophie Mangal

British organization Conflict Armament Research (CAR) has examined the ways arms have been supplied to the areas of military conflict around the world and has published a new investigation on Syria (link: http://www.conflictarm.com/publications/).
CAR experts have found that weapons supplied by Western countries not only get into the hands of the Syrian opposition fighters but also into the hands of IS terrorists.
It is noteworthy that at the beginning of the Syrian conflict IS militants used mainly weapons captured during the fighting with the Syrian and Iraqi government troops.  But after 2012 the terrorists gained new sources such as illegal supplies of weapons from the Western countries, buy and capture arms shipments destined to the Syrian opposition, as well as its own domestic arms industry.
According to CAR’s James Bevan, the first evidence of illegal weapons turnover showed up as his staff found a box of ammunition with serial numbers not far from Mosul.

James Bevan.  Source: Conflict Armament Research

James Bevan. Source: Conflict Armament Research

It turned out that the ammunition had been manufactured in the factories of Eastern Europe, but it was legally acquired by Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the United States after some time.  These countries were delivering weapons to the opposition groups in Syria through Turkey.
Moreover different batches of ammunition were found in the Iraqi cities of Tikrit, Ramadi, Fallujah and Mosul.   Daesh militants used such ammunition against government troops. CAR has documented more than 300 samples which were manufactured in the United States since the 2000s.  The terrorists very often got the ammo in just two months after it was shipped from the factory to the original customer.
5.56 x 45 mm ammunition found by CAR’s specialists in Iraq are manufactured in 2005, 2006, 2007, and 2008 at the Lake City Army Ammunition Plant, Independence, Missouri, US. Source: Conflict Armament Research

5.56 x 45 mm ammunition found by CAR’s specialists in Iraq are manufactured in 2005, 2006, 2007, and 2008 at the Lake City Army Ammunition Plant, Independence, Missouri, US. Source: Conflict Armament Research

In addition, Daesh militants managed to mass-produce their own weapons in the territories under their control, purchasing raw materials for their production.  It is still unclear how industrial chemicals’ bags which are sold in Turkey exclusively for the domestic market fell into the hands of Islamic State in Syria.  It is worth noting that the militants continue to buy raw materials wholesale.  The terrorist supply chain involves serious contacts of large suppliers in Turkey.
IS also uses mortars made at makeshift factories.  BBC News security correspondent Gordon Corera has confirmed frequent findings of hand-made weapons and improvised explosive devices and MRLS.
Dzhebhat Shamiya’s improvised weapons mounted on a bulldozer. Source: http://www.type63.com

Dzhebhat Shamiya’s improvised weapons mounted on a bulldozer. Source: http://www.type63.com

It looks like Western countries are very interested in the escalation of the situation in Syria and Iraq and deliberately organize weapons and ammunition supply both to armed Syrian opposition and to the terrorists.  Even clear evidence of the involvement of the Western industrial-military complex in arming the terrorists in Iraq and Syria will probably not help to change the situation for the better, however.  The gun lobby in the US and the fabulous profits of the military-industrial complex will always be the most important obstacle to  peace.


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Mar 15, 2017 12:43 PM

You sort of expect this kind of thing from the Saudis and Turks, but it should be nothing short of a public outrage in Britain and America that their governments are on the same side as Al Qaeda. They’ve convinced the public that the bogeyman must be tackled and now they are convincing them that it’s OK to be on the same side as the bogeymen who we were supposed to be intent on destroying a while ago.
Strange world.

Nov 28, 2016 12:49 AM

And yet the US covert support of ISIS, IS, ISIL et al, ad nauseum, features nowhere. It’s just the “Western Industrial Military complex”
Between America, the Saudis and Qatar, the financing and continuation of this Geo-Political barbarity continues only to fan the flames of fundamentalism. I wonder who profits from that?

Nov 28, 2016 1:06 AM
Reply to  bagerap

Who benefits? Answer: Turkey and Israel.
Israel – that wants to extend it borders from the Nile to the Euphrates.
Turkey – that wants its former imperial territories restored, according to speeches by Erdogan in recent years.
They are both working closely together right now but these thieves could very easily fall out in the near future.
Both regimes are headed up by egomaniacal thugs.
What will the spillover of their mutual conflict be – for them and every one else?
Has anyone or anybody thought about that?

Brian Harry, Australia
Brian Harry, Australia
Nov 27, 2016 7:29 PM

Whenever there is a rebellion in some previously unheard of African country(usually, one that has just discovered an oil deposit, or diamonds or gold) it’s not long before “Rebels” appear with new Toyota’s(we know that because Toyota always seem to put the word on the back of their utility vehicles), automatic rifles(usually Kalashnikovs) and huge bands of bullets around the chests of the rebels. It’s amazing. It seems to happen that way, every time, even though beforehand these ‘rebels’ were ‘dirt poor’. I wonder how??
By the way, Kalashnikov assault rifles are now made in the USA, by an American company RWC, Tullytown, Pa.

Nov 27, 2016 6:41 PM

One third of ALL mechanical manufacture in the UK are weapons for foreign trade.
We make profit out of them and they make profit out of us.

Nov 27, 2016 6:38 PM

Ammo-shmammo – what about the shiny new tanks!?
(and Humvees and Toyota SUV’s and Stingers and MANPADs and TOWs and Howitzer heavy artillery…)
They didn’t knock them up from raw materials – nor were they the captured spoils of war – nor were they NATO surplus left over from the Bosnian war (as the Guardian and Beeb tried to tell us.)
Closer to the truth is that Daesh were supplied missiles from NATO surplus routed on from Libya – as part of a NATO fed supply operation routed through Turkey. (So that’s what the ‘humanitarian corridor is for?’)
As for the tanks, turns out they were “accidentally furnished!”

Nov 27, 2016 6:07 PM

Reblogged this on Worldtruth.

Nov 27, 2016 5:09 PM

It is interesting how the Labour and Tory MPs pushing for ‘humanitarian air drops’ to be sent to Aleppo ‘on the advice of the White Helments’, expect such air drops to be organised and, more importantly, policed. food, water and medicines are one thing (even though there are obviously no hospitals left as the dastardly Syrian/Russian air forces have destroyed every hospital at least 10 times) but weapons sneaked into bags of bread etc., quite another.
The whole point of a siege is to force the terrorist occupiers to surrender. cuddly RAF planes dropping aid to the same, plucky rebel freedom fighters, rather defeats the object.
Do British MPs actually think?

Nov 27, 2016 3:42 PM

The Syrian opposition fighters and the IS terrorists are one and the same.

Nov 27, 2016 3:03 PM

Interesting to note that the UK government objected to Qaddafi supplying arms to the IRA yet apparently there is nothing wrong in supplying arms to Islamist terrorists.
Is that not what is known as hypocrisy or double-standards?
It is always wrong to supply any terrorists anywhere with arms.

Nov 27, 2016 2:54 PM

Reblogged this on EU: Ramshackle Empire.