US Marine Was Injured In ‘Insider Attack’ Carried Out By SDF Member: Report

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The insider attack in Syria that the Pentagon denies ever happened took place on the evening of February 17th. The original article, investigating the insider attack was published on August 8th, 2018 by Task & Purpose, written by Paul Szoldra.

Sgt. Cameron Halkovich and Cpl. Kane Downey had the job of patrolling to check on Marines who are on perimeter security. They had various responsibilities, mostly organizational duties.

On the evening of February 17th, Halkovich, shortly after beginning his patrol with Downey, was shot by an allied SDF soldier. He was shot twice in the left leg with an AK-47 and he survived. As of August 8th, he is still recovering.

The report on the situation, written by Paul Szoldra, is based on “interviews with multiple sources, military award documents, and scant details released by the Pentagon.” According to Szoldra “it has also become an open secret among the 1,000-plus Marines and sailors of the unit Halkovich was attached to — 2nd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, based in Twentynine Palms, California.”

When asked about the incident by Task & Purpose whether there had been an insider attack during the operation, the statement was conclusive: “We have no recorded incidents of insider attacks during OIR (Operation Inherent Resolve).”

The marine contingent from Weapons Company, 2nd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment was serving a “mission support site.” They occasionally left the outpost, however the majority of their responsibilities included providing cover from rooftops and in the turret of a Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected truck, fighting against ISIS and supporting the SDF.

The marines had mostly got used to life in the outpost, not really communicating much with the Kurdish-dominated SDF. An anonymous source told Szoldra of a Kurdish soldier who loaded his AK-47 and threatened a Marine close to a week before the Halkovich shooting. The marine, however, somehow deescalated the situation, the SDF soldier was subsequently kicked off the base. “Tensions were super high at this point,” the source commented.

However, just a week later, according to Szoldra, as if reinforcing the fragile relationships of the US with foreign militaries the insider attack happened. He claims that the partnerships with foreign militaries are are increasingly being used to fight terror groups through a strategy of “advise and assist.”

The timeline is as follows: A radio call alerted for a commotion at the SDF-manned gate. Halkovich and Downey went to inspect, discovering that, according to SDF soldiers a truck outside was having car trouble.

According to the anonymous source, it was a lie, with a Syrian civilian walking out of the vehicle holding a dead child that was “soaked in blood.” Upon closer inspection the Marines saw a truck filled with approximately eight dead or wounded civilians. Quickly realizing they had to help in the mass-casualty incident that had apparently happened.

The SDF rejected the Marines’ decision, “in clear violation of the Geneva Conventions.” “SDF was trying to tell us that we weren’t allowed to treat them, but… we’re going to help anybody we can,” the source said, adding that the partner force “was super upset about it.”

According to another anonymous source the group of injured civilians was turned away by the SDF because they weren’t Kurdish. The first source confirms it by saying that it “was pretty racial. They refused to give them an ambulance.”

Halkovich and Downey, despite the SDF’s rejection pushed through and opened the gates amid yelling from both sides. The marines began helping the injured.

The army medics saved four of the victims according to the first source, however SDF forces “were not happy,” according to the second. The Kurds even allegedly threatened to kick the Marines off the outpost for providing help.

That same night, Halkovich and Downey decided to go and check on Lance Cpl. Jay Smith, stationed MRAP turret behind a .50 caliber machine gun.

After walking a bit away from their quarters, Halkovich stopped to relieve himself, while Downey continued walking. He, however, noticed something strange – the entry control point had no SDF soldier watching it. Usually there would always be at least one watching the gate.

Reportedly, one of the SDF soldiers was hiding in the shadows, having earlier abandoned his post. He rushed to the MRAP and reached for the handle when he heard two shots from an AK-47.

Upon turning around he saw Halkovich on the ground, he would also later recall a lone SDF soldier standing over Halkovich with a rifle.

Downey, subsequently shot the attacker, killing him. He then dropped his weapon, yelled out to Smith that “Halko was shot!”

Halkovich was shot by two 7.62mm bullets in his leg, both of which went through. Downey initially thought he was dead, however Halkovich woke up, saw what had happened to his leg and started screaming.

According to Downey’s award citation he received in March for a “shooting incident”, he “acted decisively to eliminate the threat to his comrade” before applying a tourniquet to Halkovich’s leg and fireman-carrying him to the surgical facility. (The citation, signed by OIR Commanding General Lt. Gen. Paul Funk, however, takes pains to avoid identifying “the shooter.”)

Smith, remained at his post, alerting the other marines via radio. Halkovich was brought in to the Army surgeons nearby. He was evacuated from the post afterwards, while Downey was brought to a larger camp to explain what had happened to military investigators.

As Szoldra reported – “But for months afterward, the Marines continued to live side-by-side with the Syrian partners they had come to fear.”, citing the first source “It’s really terrifying. You’re literally surrounded.”

Spokesmen of the SDF have since refused commenting.

Halkovich received a Purple Heart in February and is, as of August 8th still recovering, while Downey received a Joint Service Commendation Medal for saving Halkovich’s life.

Currently there are new marines in the outpost formerly occupied by Halkovich, Downey and co., they are in an environment where, apparently, allies can become enemies “in the blink of an eye.”

Szoldra reported that comment was refused when a spokesperson of the unit was asked whether they were warned of the shooting in February and if they knew of the possibility of an insider attack from the SDF.

The second source’s account is the closest thing to an official comment provided: “They said it would be on the front page of every newspaper in the country and yet no justice was ever done for my wounded brother. That is the only reason I’m telling you this because no one knows what happened out there… and nothing came of it.”

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  • Dežo Gožo

    wait sdf which is supported by america was attacked by their ally?

    • as

      Well America is bombing their own allies as well. There are no such restraint from both party.

  • leon mc pilibin

    This is only the beginning as the kurds realise that they have been used as fools by the satanic zionists.GO HOME ZIOYANKS.

    • You can call me Al

      SDF is finally understanding and after years in battle (swooping sides), 1 x Yanker gets shot in the leg – the leg !!, oh come on……. to make it worse, a guard got hood winked and then received the Purple Heart …… oh please.

      I hope you are right, but I think this is False news – maybe the first BS to allow them to leave Syria.

  • AlexanderAmproz

    NATO coordinates the evacuation of the White Helmets

    VOLTAIRE NETWORK | 28 JULY 2018

    The evacuation of the White Helmets which had been requested by the United Kingdom, was debated by the Summit of the Heads of State and the governing body of NATO on 11 June 2018.

    In the final analysis, it was the Organization of the Atlantic Alliance that coordinated the evacuation of 422 White Helmets and their families with the help of Israel and Jordan, both of which have an office which is linked to Nato headquarters in Brussels.

    Although the Alliance supervised the jihadists for seven years from LandCom’s base in the Turkish city of Esmirna, it seems to be the first time that the Alliance is admitting that it played a role in Syria.

    This evacuation of the White Helmets included, clearly, strict supervision by the Western Special Forces principally the British SAS.

    This operation could only take place because Russia did not intervene against the convoy.

    It appears that President Trump gave the green light to the Alliance to evacuate all Western personnel involved in the secret war against Syria.

    • FlorianGeyer

      The liberation of Idlib will be another fascinating campaign by the SAA.

      Turkey is the ‘Israel’ North of Syria :)

  • AlexanderAmproz

    Blue Helmets return to the Golan boundary line

    VOLTAIRE NETWORK | 5 AUGUST 2018

    The Blue Helmets of UNDOF – the UN force tasked with observing the separation of the forces of Israel and Syria on the line marking off the Golan – carried out their first patrol in 4 years along this boundary line.

    The redeployment of the Blue Helmets coincided with the date commemorating the establishment of the Syrian Arab Army (1 August 1945).

    The UN Soldiers had been expelled from their position along the Golan boundary line on 28 August 2014 and were replaced by al Qaeda terrorists with the help of the Israeli army.

    At that time the UN also had to pay a ransom to secure the liberation of 45 Blue Helmets from the Fiji Islands. They had been kidnapped by al-Qaeda. That payment had been effected by a bank transfer but the UN never revealed the identity of the account holder to whom it had sent the money meant for al Qaeda.

    The Blue Helmets now return to their positions along the boundary line of the Golan under the protection of the Russian military police which has established another 8 positions to provide an early warning of any provocation. So confirmed from Moscow General Sergey Rudskoi, Head of the Department of Operations of the Russian Federation Chief of Staff.

  • peter

    All sanctions from USA are for Russian succes in Syria ! Mld .$ are lost .

  • AlexanderAmproz

    http://www.voltairenet.ORG/article202314.html

    How Putin and Trump put an end to the war against Syria

    by Thierry Meyssan

    The Western Press continues to support the elite transnational financiers and to scorn the actions of President Trump. This attitude makes it difficult to understand the progress made towards peace in Syria. Thierry Meyssan looks at the agreements reached during the last five months and the rapid progress on the ground.

    VOLTAIRE NETWORK | DAMASCUS (SYRIA) | 7 AUGUST 2018

    It is with prudence and determination that the Russian Federation and President Trump put a definitive end to the domination of the world by transnational interests.

    Convinced that the balance of powers does not depend on their economics but rather on their military capacities, President Putin has certainly reinvigorated the quality of life for his compatriots, but he developed the Red Army before making the Russians rich. On 1 March, he revealed to the world the principal weapons in his arsenal and the beginning of his programme for economic development.

    In the days that followed, the war was concentrated in the Eastern Ghouta. Russian Chief of Staff General Valeri Guerassimov telephoned his US counterpart, General Joseph Dunford ,and told him that in the case of US military intervention, Russian forces would target the 53 US ships in the Mediterranean and the Gulf, including their nuclear-powered aircraft carriers. Above all, he requested that President Trump be made aware of his country’s new military capacities.

    Finally, the United States allowed the Syrian Arab Army and a few Russian infantry-men to free the Ghouta of the jihadists who occupied it.

    Only the United Kingdom attempted to anticipate events by organising the « Skripal affair » – if the current world order were to collapse, we would once again have to employ the rhetoric of the Cold War, which set the kindly cowboys against the big bad Russian Bears.

    In June, when the Syrian Arab Army, supported by the Russian Air Force, moved into the South of the country, the US embassy in Jordan warned the jihadists that as from now, they would have to defend themselves alone, without the aid or the support of the Pentagon and the CIA.

    On 16 July in Helsinki, Presidents Putin and Trump went a lot further. They broached the subject of reconstruction, in other words, war damage. Donald Trump, as we have been writing here for the last two years, is opposed to the Puritan ideology, financial capitalism and the imperialism which is a direct result. He rightly assumes that his country is in no way obliged to bear the consequences of the crimes of his predecessors, of which his people had also been victims. He affirms that these crimes had been committed at the instigation, and for the profit, of the elite transnational financiers. He therefore considers that it is for them to pay, even though no-one knows precisely how to make them do so.

    The two Presidents also agreed to facilitate the return of the refugees. By doing so, Donald Trump overthrew the rhetoric of his predecessor, according to which they were escaping « dictatorial repression » and not the invasion by the jihadists.

    While in the South of the country, the jihadists were themselves fleeing before the Syrian and Russian forces, and a few desperate units of Daesh were committing unimaginable atrocities, the Russian Minister for Foreign Affairs, Sergeï Lavrov, and the Russian Chief of Staff, Valeri Guerassimov, undertook a tour of Europe and the Middle East.

    They were welcomed as discreetly as possible in the European Union. Indeed, according to the Western narrative, General Guerassimov is a conquistador who invaded and annexed Crimea. He is therefore forbidden access to the Union, a self-proclaimed defender of the « rule of law ». Unfortunately, since it was too late to remove his name from the list of sanctions, the Union decided to close its eyes to the grand principles and make an exception, allowing a visit by the hero of the reunification of Crimea and Russia. The shame which swamped the West-European leaders when faced with their own hypocrisy may explain the absence of official photographs of the hearings for the Russian delegation.

    The Russian delegation resumed for each of its interlocutors a few of the decisions taken at the Helsinki Summit. Acting wisely, it abstained from asking for accounts concerning the role of each state during the war, calling on them only to help end it – withdrawal of the special forces, cessation of the secret war, suppression of the aid to the jihadists, return of the refugees, reopening of the embassies. In particular, it confirmed that everyone could participate in the reconstruction, all inclusive.

    As soon as the delegation left, Chancellor Angela Merkel and President Emmanuel Macron craftily interrogated the Pentagon in order to find out if it was true that President Donald Trump intended to make certain transnational companies pay (KKR, Lafarge, etc.) – just to destabilise the folks on the other side of the Atlantic. The attitude of President Macron, ex-bank executive, is all the more deplorable in that he tried to symbolise his good faith by offering 44 tonnes of humanitarian aid to the Syrian population, transmitted by the Russian army.

    In the Middle East, the visit by the Russian delegation was more widely covered by the media. Lavrov and Guerassimov were able to announce the creation of five committees for the return of the refugees. Each committee, in Egypt, Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq and Jordan, includes representatives of the host state, together with Russian and Syrian delegates. Yet no-one dared to ask the hard question – why would a committee like this not include the European Union?

    Concerning the reopening of the embassies, the United Arab Emirates stole a march on the Westerners and their allies by negotiating the reopening of their own.

    What was left was the Israëli preoccupation with obtaining Syria’s departure from the Iranian military advisors and the pro-Iranian militias, including Hezbollah. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu multiplied his return trips to and from Moscow and Sotchi in order to defend his cause. We may remember that Guerassimov had ironised about the nerve of the beaten Israëlis demanding the removal of the Iranian victors. As for Lavrov, he diplomatically ducked behind a refus de principe concerning interference in Syria’s sovereignty.

    Russia solved the problem – Russian military police re-installed UNO forces along the line of demarcation between Syria and Israël, from which they had been ejected four years ago. During this whole period, they were replaced by Al-Qaïda, supported by Tsahal. Behind the line of demarcation, in Syrian territory, Russia has also installed eight military observation posts. In this way, Moscow can guarantee both to the UNO and Syria that the jihadists will not come back, and to Israël that Iran will not attack from Syria.

    Israël, which until now had been betting on the defeat of the Syrian Arab Republic, and qualified its President as a « butcher », suddenly admitted by the voice of its Minister for Defence, Avigdor Liberman, that Syria was the victor of the conflict, and that President el-Assad was its legitimate head. In order to demonstrate his good will, Liberman ordered the bombing of a group of Daesh jihadists that until now he had kept in reserve.

    Little by little, the Russian Federation and the White House are putting some order into international relations, and convincing various protagonists to withdraw from the war, and even to offer bids for the reconstruction. From its side, the Syrian Arab Army continues the liberation of it territory. It remains for President Trump to manage to withdraw his troops from the South (Al-Tanf) and the North of the country (East of the Euphrates), and for President Erdoğan to abandon the jihadist refugees in the North-West (Idleb) to their destiny.

    Thierry Meyssan

    • FlorianGeyer

      Thank you for posting this excellent report.

    • as

      Simply put Gerasimov and the Russian army have put up with the restraint order from Putin until that point. Their army are actually quite angry to the American forces for killing their highly respected general and keep targeting their MP and observation post including killing their medical staff setting up field hospital.

      At that moment Putin have to concede that they must be allowed to strike back in deterrence or they should just go home altogether.

      • AlexanderAmproz

        Putin is a wise man and didn’t want to pour Oil on the fire !

    • 1691

      “In order to demonstrate his good will, Liberman ordered the bombing of a group of Daesh jihadists that until now he had kept in reserve.”
      https://www.fort-russ.com/2018/07/did-syrian-forces-trick-israel-into-attacking-isis/

    • antoun

      meysan is the pom pom girl of trump!!

      • AlexanderAmproz

        “Cause toujours, tu m’intéresse” (lol) !

  • FlorianGeyer

    ” General Lt. Gen. Paul Funk, however, takes pains to avoid identifying “the shooter.”)

    Lt General Funk ‘ funked ‘ telling the truth of the incident :)

    https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=funked&oq=funked&aqs=chrome..69i57j0l5.7367j0j4&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

    For those of you here that are not fully familiar with all of the colourful English Language :)

  • Ivan Freely

    “…in clear violation of the Geneva Conventions.”

    LOL As if the US cared about such things.

  • seawolf

    Oh boy the only innocent in this war are ordinary people

  • Real Anti-Racist Action

    Why did he shoot him in the leg? If it was insider, then the marine had no idea it was coming…
    Maybe they had an argument and at the last moment they both drew their weapons in haste.

  • James

    It just goes to show the real motives of the SDF – wipe out the pro-assad civilians while repopulating with their own. The only lesson for troops is that they need to go along to get along, regardless if some of them have the moral values to help civilians in distress. What a sad situation to be in if you lived there.