FLASHBACK: Obama Signs Off On Plan To Arm Syrian Rebels With Night Vision Goggles, Body Armor And Other Military Equipment…



(CNN) - President Barack Obama has signed off on a new package of nonlethal aid for Syrian rebels, U.S. officials tell CNN, signaling his administration is cautiously wading further into the conflict.

Officials said the White House approved the package at a meeting of the National Security Council last week.

The move reflects what officials describe as a ramped-up effort to change the military balance on the battlefield in Syria.

It follows a decision by Obama last month to send food and medicine to the rebels, the first direct U.S. support for the armed opposition.

Other agencies have not been briefed on the final elements of the package, which is expected to be detailed at a White House meeting this week.

“We have no new decisions on assistance to announce at this point and continue to review every possible option that could help end the violence and accelerate a political transition,” said Caitlin Hayden, a National Security Council spokeswoman.

Officials said it is expected to include equipment such as body armor, night vision goggles and other military equipment that is defensive in nature, but could be used to aid in combat by Syrian rebels battling forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad.

H/T Weasel Zippers

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