James Jarrad, a Senior Commander of the US Forces in their operation against the Islamic State, found himself in an embarrassing situation when he was asked how many troops the United States has deployed in Syria.
During a press briefing on Tuesday, US Army Major General James Jarrad was unable to answer a simple question from a journalist who asked him about the number of troops that the US army had deployed in Syria. At first, he said 4,000, but quickly backtracked.
“I think it’s a little over 4,000 US troops in Syria right now that are supporting efforts against Daesh [IS], and supporting the SDF [Syrian Democratic Forces],” he told Pentagon reporters in response.
Question on troop count in Syria/Iraq comes up again: MG says 503 coalition forces in Syria this time. pic.twitter.com/O4gkbHd6jF
— Jake Godin (@JakeGodin) October 31, 2017
The number, which was highly exaggerated, left many reporters in the room stunned, considering his answer was tenfold bigger than the actual number of troops deployed by the US in Syria. Jarrad than apologized for the “slip of the tongue“.
“I’m sorry. I misspoke there. There are approximately 500 troops in Syria,” the military official said, leading to laughter in the briefing room from the journalists present.
The US Army is currently working with the rebel Syrian Democratic Forces and Kurdish Forces, helping them take back land from ISIS, in an operation that both the Russians and Syrians have called illegitimate.
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