And next, Syria?

Discussion in 'world politics, current affairs and news' started by Idris2002, Feb 18, 2011.

  1. CrabbedOne

    CrabbedOne Walking sideways snippily

    On Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi's Blog Suqur al-Furat: A Pro-Assad Sha'itat Tribal Militia
    Points out members of the Sha'itat tribe joined IS and then participated in punitive massacres of their own kin. Not unusual, that was a common IS highly divisive MO in managing tribes. In Iraq this has often resulted in vengeful parts of Sunni Arab tribes fighting alongside Shia Hashd against IS remnants. Atrocities have been common in such situations. There's sometimes a danger of a cycle long running feuds across kinship networks if blood money isn't paid.
     
  2. CrabbedOne

    CrabbedOne Walking sideways snippily

    On Syria Deeply Idlib Residents Split Over Support for Al-Qaida-Linked Militants
    With Assad eventually coming to burn the country and Ahar in a shambles it's not surprising some look to AQ.
     
  3. teqniq

    teqniq DisMembered

    Interesting.

     
  4. copliker

    copliker ...

    The tshirt is from a merchandise site called 'Right Wing Death Squad' (which I'm not going to link to).
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2017
    teqniq likes this.
  5. CrabbedOne

    CrabbedOne Walking sideways snippily

    On Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi's Blog The Life of Abu Qasura Kanakari of Jaysh Khalid bin al-Waleed
    Revealing revolt biography of a prominent Salafi-Jihadi active in the Yarmouk Basin. Illustrates how difficult it could be to distinguish such people early in the rising especially as many rebel groups rapidly adopted Islamist ideas and for various reasons as the revolt militarised the Salafist look spread even to groups that on closer contact appeared distinctly lacking in piety. Note the kinship recruiting.
     
  6. Casually Red

    Casually Red tomorrow belongs to me

    The Syrian Arab Army have now taken the city of Sukhna . Barely a year ago even a few twats on here were pointing to eastern Syria as a completely lost cause . President Assads promise to restore every last inch of Syria back under the control of Syrian sovereignty is being fulfilled . Government controlled territory has been restored to something like 250 % in the past few months , and now the winds at their back . The liberation of suknha leaves the door wide open to Deir Ez Zor , besieged by the beards for years now but holding out tenaciously and on the cusp of being relieved by SAA....as Assad promised years back . Daesh have thrown the Islamic kitchen sink at DEZ umpteen times, for years, but every time they broke Daeshes back . They slaughtered them with a rigorous defence on behalf of civilisation .over and over again despite years of siege Daesh are finished now once DEZ is relieved

    From Sukhna it's all flat terrain to DEZ relief and victory is at hand . Massive, massive, morale boost coming the Syrian Army's way . This will be huge...properly huge . 9 months ago this would have been thought imposssible . But now thanks to putins air power and Syrias resilience Daesh are fucked .






    Daesh are properly fucked now
     
  7. Casually Red

    Casually Red tomorrow belongs to me

    Saa morale in flat out mode, thundering through what was unassailable Daesh heartland only a few months ago . Today the Syrian Army are strolling through . The relief of Deir Ez Zor is at hand. And with that eastern syria...the lost cause..And it shows in the troops morale

    [​IMG]


    Daesh are fucked, well and truly
     
    donkyboy likes this.
  8. teqniq

    teqniq DisMembered

    So no evidence to back up your claim from the other day then? I suppose I shouldn't be surprised really, it's not like you haven't got form for that sort of shit is it?
     
    copliker likes this.
  9. CrabbedOne

    CrabbedOne Walking sideways snippily

    On War Is Boring Not Every Civil War Is a Guerilla War
    Article looks at classifying civil wars into types.

    I often compare Syria with post-Saddam Iraq's first insurgency. The latter was a guerrilla war fought by lightly equipped mess of groups with very heavy use of brutal terrorist tactics against civ-pop most notably an atrocious campaign of suicide bombing Shia Markets that shocked even AQ. Such terrorist tactics do feature in Syria but aren't typical. Syria has more been a war of company sized conventional battles and protracted sieges. Syrian rebels are much better armed, well funded, often have access to heavy weapons and have controlled quite large areas of urban territory. The Syrian state has proven resilient but rather weak militarily with an advantage in airpower and artillery not compensating for limited manpower and low loyalist morale. Assad would probably have fallen without HA and the Iranians. Groups like Jaish al Islam even had a pretty sophisticated military industrial complex in some ways superior to that of IS. Sunni Arab Iraqi insurgents melted into the population putting non-combatants at far less risk than Syrian rebel warlords who could hold territory but had no real means of defending the population from regime air attacks and artillery that have been a big killer. The main danger Sunni Arab civilians faced in the first phase in Iraq was being ethnically cleansed by Shia militias. The Syrian Sunni Arab rising against Assad militarily looks more like the second Sunni Arab insurgency in Iraq that kicked off properly in 2013 which IS dominated though Syria's rising shares the political fragmentation that doomed the first one in Iraq. The political conditions for a second rising in Iraq were baked in despite a fairly inclusive democratic Baghdad/Irbil and large powerful domestic security force in the ISF/Peshmerga. And then the Arab Spring hit producing mostly messy failures but it would be foolish to dismiss its root causes as resolved. If anything Assad's family lands in Syria look far more vulnerable to future unrest than Iraq did in 2011.
     
  10. CrabbedOne

    CrabbedOne Walking sideways snippily

    On ISW Syria Situation Report: July 27 - August 9, 2017

    Mentions big HTS transfer from Lebanon to Idlib negotiated with HA. Various Russian brokered ceasefires. One loyalist militia disbanded in Latakia with wealthy owner returning home to Russia. Rebels organising anti-IS ops up by Abu Kamal.
     
  11. CrabbedOne

    CrabbedOne Walking sideways snippily

    On War On The Rocks LONG IGNORED: THE USE OF CHEMICAL AND BIOLOGICAL WEAPONS AGAINST INSURGENTS
     
  12. CrabbedOne

    CrabbedOne Walking sideways snippily

    From Chatham House Why Ahrar al-Sham couldn't stand up to HTS's attack in Idlib
    Ahar's weaknesses echo those of the revolt in general. A diverse localised rising that could agree on fighting off Assad but with large ideological splits over Islamist issues. Ahar ending up captured by the national interest of a powerful neighbour that's lost interest in regime change.
     
  13. hash tag

    hash tag Pedicabo omnes

     
  14. CrabbedOne

    CrabbedOne Walking sideways snippily

    On IRIN News New order on the border: Can foreign aid get past Syria’s jihadis?
    Lund on the post Ahar al Sham dilemma in Northern Idlib.

    Quotes Brent McGurk: “Idlib Province is the largest al-Qaeda safe haven since 9/11,” US gone very cold on the place under Trump. Heller wrote a long paper on Idlib a year ago pointing out the whole economy relies on foreign aid. Now HTS doesn't just benefit indirectly but controls the supply lines aid moves along. Western donors like the UK who've supported rebel groups running honourable civil councils probably will abandon them. Lund thinks private Gulf donors may get queasy as well.

    Though I'd point out their support to the Taliban has never really dried up since 9-11 and in fact we have some parallels to the situation in bumpy Idlib. The Taliban was much admired by some Ahar figures and its emirate is presented as a model for Syria by AQ. Both AQ and IS are currently operating in Afghanistan despite the attention of a large NATO presence for the best part of this century. It's perhaps worth considering the Quetta Shura Taliban faced strategic defeat after 9-11 far more decisive than that of Ahar recently. It survived only to become even closer to the Pakistani ISI and is currently resurgent.
     
  15. CrabbedOne

    CrabbedOne Walking sideways snippily

    From The Atlantic Council Reaching Agreement on al-Qaeda: An Option for the US and Turkey
    Mattis headed to Ankara soon. The above does seem like a likely direction.
     
  16. CrabbedOne

    CrabbedOne Walking sideways snippily

    From Atlantic Council Raqqa’s Water War
    Another Phase IV element that seems pretty neglected: Rojova's impressive water resources in a very dry country.
     
  17. CrabbedOne

    CrabbedOne Walking sideways snippily

    On ISW Russia's Syria Mirage: July 17 - August 13, 2017
    ISW notes the R+6 is galloping towards Deir along apparently not doing clearing operations carefully and lacking enough holding forces. In these things it's not how much of the map you rule but how completely. Balanche a few weeks ago anticipated further slow careful progress this time as a previous R+6 offensives East of Palmyra have collapsed disastrously when IS counter attacked.

    ISW's probably right here that the imperative is to throw out a screen to stop US backed forces capitalising on IS's well conducted fighting withdrawal to the lower Syrian Euphrates. The heavily anti-Russian tone is perhaps a bit off. Russia may genuinely want to use Syria to create relationship of peers (i.e. gain a huge increase in geopolitical status for a parsimonious price) with a very dangerous vastly more powerful US hyper-power that hysterically overestimates terrorist threats in a way the geopolitical game playing Russians simply don't. Such a screening action benefits the Kremlin as it means they own Syrian ground approaches to IS's last territorial redoubt and that entangles US anti-IS operations with the R+6. US/Russian airpower can conquer but finally infantry must capture, clear and hold. That will probably be a future joint Damascus-Baghdad operation.

    Revolutionary Iran on the other hand having greatly eroded US influence in Iraq really does want to press the Great Satan out of Syria and what the R+6 is doing will probably serve Iranian objectives better than it does Russian. Assad meanwhile also wants the Yankee menace gone, his family's lucrative hydrocarbons recaptured and the same trade/supply lines out to Diyala and beyond that Teheran Iran covets.
     
  18. CrabbedOne

    CrabbedOne Walking sideways snippily

    From The Washington Institute The Race for Deir al-Zour Province
    Balanche points out that the PKK appears to have little interest in supporting an SDF thrust further South to thwart the Iranians. In doing so they might just empower a future rebel competitor in Eastern Syria. The US has very pointedly demonstrated bad faith by dropping the Northern rebels. Rojova's better longterm options may lie with the enemy of their Turkish enemy the Russians though he doubts this will be made overt. There are some incentives here to drag out the fight with IS and maintain reliable US support.

    Ironically I'd point Trump's South Western ceasefire also freed up R+6 resources to enable Iran's move towards Deir and the Iraqi border. Though those still look pretty sparse for the task in hand.

    Nice map:
    [​IMG]
     
    mather likes this.
  19. CrabbedOne

    CrabbedOne Walking sideways snippily

    On Newsweek WHAT DOES ISRAEL WANT FROM THE CIVIL WAR IN SYRIA?
    Article looks at a number of outcomes in Syria from an Israeli perspective and sees Balkanisation as the best. Not being exactly focused on regional stability they often had a similar view on post-Saddam Iraq.

    Russia's carve up of Syria's borders in foreign zones of influence might approach de facto partition but hasn't been that well received in Tel Aviv. That's mainly because the Israelis don't see it lasting.

    Unfortunately for the Israelis as in Iraq the likely outcome is a greatly enhanced sphere of Iranian influence. Having a far more bulky set of Shia militias eventually at a loose end on the other side of the Golan isn't good. The good old days of a passive aggressive Bashar effectively policing that border for the IDF are probably gone.
     
    mather likes this.
  20. CrabbedOne

    CrabbedOne Walking sideways snippily

    On Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi blog The Iranian Land Route to the Mediterranean: Myth or Reality?
    Points out Iran is doing pretty well at supplying its Levantine allies by air and a land supply route probably would be subject to harassment by the likes of IS long after they've lost territorial control. Both the regime and Iran's Iraqi Hashd allies have their own motivations for securing routes across to Iraqi border turf.

    Looking at the way Iran's spread its influence in Iraq commerce and pilgrims were perhaps more important than the military aspects. Reducing Damascus's isolation and creating a relationship with Baghdad are goals they'd share with Assad. Iranian policy tends to lay in infrastructure that may or may not be fully developed decades in the future. Though poking the Great Satan in the eye is always gratifying for the IRGC.

    What I do notice is the Israelis don't seem to be as obsessed with the Teheran-Beqaa Valley GLOC as some US commentators. They focus more on developments on their border. After all the route existed before the Caliphate and the IAF can always bomb the shit out of it if it becomes annoying. The Russians will look the other way as they've no interest in an Iran-Israeli war derailing their Syria strategy.
     
  21. CrabbedOne

    CrabbedOne Walking sideways snippily

    On The Intercept SYRIAN CIVILIANS BRACE FOR HUMANITARIAN DISASTER IN A FINAL CONFRONTATION BETWEEN ASSAD AND JIHADISTS
    Interesting the comparisons reached for there. Some in Idlib have seen the stern Taliban as a model for governance but the reality of many rebel enclaves is more diverse. The feared future fate of Idlib being that of Mosul not flattened nearby East Aleppo or Raqqa, once a common rebel place of refuge in this war, now being precision bombed into submission.

    Mosul certainly was the largest most intense regional battle since the Iran-Iraq war but the estimate above of civilian dead in Mosul is extremely dubious. A more realistic one would be a quarter of that. About 30K people got killed in the far longer battle of Aleppo; ~70% of them civilians.
     
  22. copliker

    copliker ...

    Bumping this for those interested in this area.

    The book Behind The Disappearances by Iain Guest details the campaign by the Argentinian dictatorship, backed by the Reagan administration, to wreck any attempts at investigations by international bodies into its abductions, torture and murders of opponents. The Assad regime, backed up by other states, is using a similar strategy.
     
    Riklet likes this.
  23. CrabbedOne

    CrabbedOne Walking sideways snippily

    In The National What ISIL's rise in 2014 tells us about Al Qaeda's potential in Syria today
    Hassan Hassan speculates that AQ in Syria may be left holding the banner of a just anti-Assad struggle. Much as IS gathered the fragments of the post-Baath Iraqi insurgency into a new rising that they dominated. These things can smoulder on bitterly for generations. It's recognised in Irish Republican families that the direct force cause often passed from grandfather to grandson. The Hama Massacre in 1982 left a clear imprint on the international Salafi-Jihadi movement and then that infected the Syrian rising as it militarised thirty years later. AQ will still seek to capitalise on that even as it is forced underground.
     
  24. copliker

    copliker ...

    [​IMG]
     
    Riklet likes this.
  25. Red Cat

    Red Cat Well-Known Member

    Thanks. Unfortunately this is a thread that I don't usually look at, which is a shame given the complexity and importance of the subject.
     
    JimW and copliker like this.
  26. teqniq

    teqniq DisMembered

    This story has finally received some attention from a mainstream publication.

    Beatings and gang rape: the horrors facing women in Syria's jails revealed
     
  27. phillm

    phillm Trolling through Life (TM)

    Sirena likes this.
  28. camouflage

    camouflage perspective is the essence of wisdom.

  29. phillm

    phillm Trolling through Life (TM)

  30. teqniq

    teqniq DisMembered

    Syrian activist and daughter murdered in Istanbul home: Turkish police

    :(

    i wonder if this has anything to do with the recent torture report posted by copliker ?
     

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