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America's botched effort last month to support a Syrian moderate rebel group known as "Division 30" was a chain of errors that recalls, in a small way, the 1961 Bay of Pigs fiasco.The United States was too dependent on Turkey, and it didn't have clear plans about how to respond if the rebels were attacked; although the U.S. eventually provided air support, it was too late to do much good.The Nusra Front extremists regarded Division 30 fighters as "American agents," according to their Web postings. They kidnapped seven Division 30 fighters on July 29, and attacked its headquarters at Azaz on July 31 . Division 30's difficulties illustrate U.S. problems working with Turkey.The Division 30 recruits were perhaps too boastful about their American links. When the CIA landed a Cuban rebel force at the Bay of Pigs in 1961, the U.S. failed to provide adequate planning, intelligence, air cover or political support.The Syria nightmare deserves a coherent U.S. strategy – including new lessons learned from Division 30 .
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