As tensions come to a boil in Syria over an alleged chemical attack, thousands of U.S. troops and Marines will be gathering in neighboring Jordan for the start of a major training exercise.
Nearly 3,600 U.S. troops, including Marines with the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit, or MEU, will be in place Sunday for the start of a nearly two-week training exercise known as Eager Lion, military officials confirmed to Marine Corps Times.
It will be a rare display of allied firepower, which couldn’t come at a more tense time as U.S. Navy warships are steadily building a presence in the Mediterranean in preparation for what analysts presume will be a tomahawk cruise missile strike on Syria.
President Donald Trump has sent mixed messages about his plans for an attack on Syria, which the Pentagon is considering after Syrian President Bashar al-Assad allegedly used chemical weapons to attack the city of Douma.
Last year, Eager Lion was launched from the Zarqa Jordanian military base, located near the Syrian border and roughly 100 miles from the Syrian capital of Damascus.
The exercise has routinely been viewed as a pretext for an invasion of Syria by analysts and countries aligned with the Syrian regime.
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