Now We Are Seven: Trump Expands US Military Ops HQ in Jordan

The MOC-Military Operations Room has changed shape more than once since it was inaugurated by Gen. Martin Dempsey, Chief of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff in August 2013 at a site west of the Jordanian capital Amman. As CENTCOM’s Forward Command in Jordan, it is served by 273 US Air Force and Special Operations Forces officers and housed in a bomb- and missile-proof installation against possible attacks.
When he first briefed the officers, Gen. Dempsey said, “Jordan lives in a very volatile region and at a very critical time in its history. They can count on us to continue to be their partner.”
The US Air Force command section is directly linked with the headquarters of the US, Israeli, Jordanian, UAE and Saudi air forces. Another section coordinates operations between US and Jordanian special forces and US-trained commando units.
A closed section is home to the CIA controllers of US agents going in and out of Syria and a communications center.
In its first two years of operation up until 2015, this war room focused on supervising 54 Syrian rebel groups charged with consolidating their control of southern Syria, preparatory to heading north to Damascus for the battle to oust Bashar Assad and his regime. Their second mission was to bar the Islamic State’s path into the south.
Then, in August 2015, the operation room’s functions changed, thanks to the quiet cooperation deal reached between Presidents Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin, a month before Russia expanded its military involvement in the Syrian war. According to their covert understandings – which DEBKA Weekly uncovered at the time – Syria would be divided into two spheres of influence: the US-controlled eastern bank of the Euphrates, that would be off-limits to Russian forces, and the country west of the river up to the sea, under exclusive Russian control.
The main deficiency of this deal was that neither power claimed control of eastern Syria and the Euphrates valley region between the Syrian and the West Iraqi deserts. The Islamic State quickly moved into this void and remains there up until the present.
Then on Jan. 15, 2016, debkafile discovered that Jordan had established a second war room – this time in partnership with Russia – for coordinated anti-ISIS military operations in Syria.
Two days earlier, Obama had agreed to this arrangement in a telephone call with Putin. He had intended that the two war rooms, the American and the Russian, would work in harness in the Syrian arena. However, a viable framework for their cooperation never took shape – notwithstanding the efforts of both presidents and their foreign ministers, John Kerry and Sergey Lavrov.
In the last fortnight, the American war room in Jordan evolved again, as DEBKA Weekly’s intelligence and military sources can now reveal. Donald Trump’s imminent arrival in the White House as the next US president abruptly opened up the US operations center in Jordan to close sync with its Russian opposite number – and further still, into contact with the Syrian officers posted there by the high command in Damascus.
This last change sprang from the incoming president’s national strategic adviser, Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn’s intercession for a move towards sketching the outline of a new coalition lineup, made up of the United States, Russia, Jordan, Israel, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, with the Syrian army also on board.
The officers of the seven armies have sat down to develop plans for their first joint project: a military campaign to drive ISIS out of eastern Syria and the Euphrates Valley.

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