Syria (News/Activism)

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  • U.S. Syria Policy at Crossroads as Rebels Falter

    12/05/2016 6:27:53 AM PST · by detective · 21 replies
    The Wall Street Journal ^ | Dec. 4, 2016 | Jay Solomon, Carol E. Lee and Felicia Schwartz Biography @felschwartz
    Steep losses by antiregime rebels in Syria have scrambled U.S. policy calculations at a crucial moment in the country’s long-running war, with the election of Donald Trump already pointing to the possibility of a dramatic shift when he takes office in January. Mr. Trump hasn't detailed his plans for Syria, but has outlined a likely break from the Obama administration, which has supplied small amounts of arms and funding to militias attempting to overthrow President Bashar al-Assad and has separately fought the Islamic State extremist group.

    12/05/2016 4:17:29 AM PST · by Cronos · 39 replies
    South Front ^ | 5 December 2016 | SF
    By December 5, ther Syrian army and pro-government militias liberated Karm Tahan and al-Qaterrji neighborhoods and the National Hospital in about 800m from the Aleppo Citadel. In coming days, the army and its allies will likely able to reach the Aleppo Citadel and militant defenses north of it will collapse.compared with this image from yesterday
  • Russian warplane crashes into Mediterranean Sea after Syria operation

    12/05/2016 3:37:31 AM PST · by Freelance Warrior · 64 replies
    Express ^ | 12/05/2016 | Alix Culbertson
    The Su-33 aircraft skidded off the runway while landing on the Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft carrier in the Mediterranean, Russian news agencies reported on Monday citing a statement from the Russian defence ministry. The pilot ejected from the plane and is safe, the defence ministry was quoted as saying. A statement from the ministry, said: "While landing after completing a combat task in the Syrian sky, a Su-33 fighter jet skidded off the dock because the cable of the stopping device broke. "The pilot ejected and was immediately brought aboard the Admiral Kuznetsov heavy aircraft carrier by rescuers. "His life is...
  • Assad Troops Have Taken 52 Percent of Rebel-Held Aleppo, Russia says

    12/05/2016 3:18:47 AM PST · by Freelance Warrior · 15 replies
    ABC ^ | 12/4/2016
    Russia's military has said Syrian government troops have seized more than 52 percent of the opposition-held east of Aleppo. An official from the rebel group, Jabha Shamiya, confirmed some of the government's advances to Reuters, saying the troops were now approaching Aleppo's Old City. On Saturday foreign minister Sergei Lavrov called on all rebel fighters "without exception" to lay down their arms and agree to leave the city. Lavrov said Kerry had made proposals on Friday that were more "in line with" what Moscow has been suggesting and said that Russia was ready to send negotiators immediately to Geneva to...
  • Green Berets in Islamic State fight frustrated with top brass micromanagement

    12/04/2016 7:58:29 PM PST · by detective · 29 replies
    The Washington Times ^ | December 4, 2016 | Rowan Scarborough
    The secretive teams of Green Berets guiding rebels in northeast Syria have expressed frustration with the amount of micromanagement they receive from a top-heavy headquarters in Iraq and the United States. Special Forces sources tell of support staff watching the free-spirited Green Berets on reconnaissance aircraft and then criticizing their performance as they conduct the mission officially described as “train, advise and assist” the multi-ethnic Syrian Democratic Forces. The Americans and SDF are fighting their way toward Raqqa, the Islamic State terrorist army’s home base in Syria. Some of the “assisting” has drawn the Americans into firefights. One officer chalked...
  • Congress authorizes Trump to arm Syrian rebels with anti-aircraft missiles (McCain)

    12/04/2016 12:30:35 AM PST · by TigerLikesRooster · 158 replies
    Al-Monitor The Pulse of the Middle East ^ | December 2, 2016 | Julian Pecquet
    Congress authorizes Trump to arm Syrian rebels with anti-aircraft missiles The House voted for the first time today to explicitly authorize the incoming Donald Trump administration to arm vetted Syrian rebels with anti-aircraft missiles. Summary Today, the House passed a defense bill that conditionally allows the provision of MANPADs to anti-Syrian regime forces. Author Julian Pecquet Posted December 2, 2016 While the language in the annual defense bill also creates restrictions on the provision of the controversial weapons, it represents a win for Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman John McCain, R-Ariz., a fervent advocate of helping the rebels resist President...
  • Russia seeks full withdrawal of Aleppo rebels

    12/03/2016 5:35:43 PM PST · by Mariner · 7 replies
    Reuters ^ | December 3rd, 2016 | By Tom Perry, Isla Binnie and Vladimir Soldatkin
    Russia said on Saturday it was ready for talks with the United States about a withdrawal of all Syrian rebels from eastern Aleppo, where advances by the Russian-backed Syrian army and its allies threaten to deal a crushing blow to the rebellion. In just over a week, the army and allied militias have seized large areas of the opposition-held territory in eastern Aleppo in a fierce campaign that may leave the rebels with no choice but to seek a negotiated passage out of their area. With tens of thousands of civilians still living in the rebels' shrinking, besieged enclave, the...
  • Aleppo Siege: Syria Rebels Lose 60% of Territory [Obama's Failed Red Line Legacy]

    12/03/2016 10:23:24 AM PST · by Steelfish · 14 replies
    BBCNews ^ | December 3, 2016
    Aleppo Siege: Syria Rebels Lose 60% of Territory Close to two-thirds of rebel-held areas of east Aleppo have now fallen to the Syrian government after another district was seized. A UK-based monitor said the Tariq al-Bab district fell on Friday, opening up a link between government-held areas and Aleppo's airport. Swathes of east Aleppo held by rebels have been seized by government troops and militiamen in the past three weeks. Some 250,000 people remain trapped in besieged areas of the city. Tens of thousands of people have been displaced. The United Nations this week said conditions in east Aleppo were...
  • Watch: UN Demands Israel Give Golan Back to Syria (truncated)!

    12/01/2016 6:03:01 PM PST · by Eleutheria5 · 51 replies
    ..... That date marked the 69th anniversary of the UN vote in to approve the Partition Plan, dividing the British-ruled Palestine Mandate into a Jewish state and an Arab state. Click below and learn about the absurd scene at the UN, where the world body issues the ludicrous demand that Israel give the strategic Golan Heights to Syria, the most unstable country in the region. Video
  • Operation in Syria only targets terror, Erdogan clarifies

    12/01/2016 8:23:09 AM PST · by Freelance Warrior · 6 replies
    Turkey’s military operation in Syria is not against any country or person but terror groups in general, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said, in contrast to earlier remarks that Turkey’s objective was to topple Syrian President Bashar al-Assad following. “The aim of the Euphrates Shield Operation is no country or person but only terror organizations. No one should doubt this issue that we have uttered over and over, and no one should comment on it in another fashion or try to [misrepresent its meaning],” Erdogan said at a 30th gathering with village chiefs at the Presidential Palace in Ankara on...
  • For Secretary of State: John Bolton

    11/30/2016 10:04:31 PM PST · by george76 · 72 replies
    Washington Times ^ | Dec 01, 2016 | Cal Thomas
    How about someone with experience as a diplomat, including within the State Department and as a former U.N. ambassador? John Bolton, now a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and a regular commentator on cable news, does not engage in wishful thinking, or project American morals on those who don't share them in the vain hope they might be contagious. Here is Bolton on the threat of radical Islamic terrorism: "When you have a regime that would be happier in the afterlife than in this life, this is not a regime that is subject to classic theories of deterrence."...
  • Syrian rebels in secret talks with Moscow to end Aleppo fighting

    12/01/2016 1:57:59 AM PST · by Freelance Warrior · 10 replies
    Syrian rebels in secret talks with Moscow to end Aleppo fighting. Turkey-facilitated negotiations without US show how Washington could become sidelined
  • Two men accused of negotiating illegal $ 1 M anti-aircraft...

    11/30/2016 11:31:05 PM PST · by Freedom of Speech Wins · 18 replies
    Sun-Sentinel ^ | 11-23-16 | Paula McMahon
    Two men are facing federal charges they tried to do a $1 million deal in Broward County that would have illegally sent anti-aircraft ammunition to Iraq and Sudan. Henri Shushan, 39, of Tamarac, and Venyamin Golynkin, 65, of Belarus, were arrested last week in Pompano Beach after an extensive undercover investigation by the FBI. Federal prosecutors said the men were involved in a plot to illegally export a total of 500,000 rounds of 23mm anti-aircraft ammunition, which is fired from a large cannon, to Sudan and Iraq. The U.S. bans export of defense items, including weapons and ammunition, to both...
  • Syrian teen kicked off Berlin tram 'for wearing headscarf'

    11/30/2016 5:09:35 PM PST · by Olog-hai · 12 replies ^ | 30 Nov 2016 16:39 GMT+01:00
    A 14-year-old from Syria has reported a Berlin tram driver to police, claiming he told her to get off the vehicle because she was wearing a headscarf. The incident took place in the southeastern neighborhood of Friedrichshagen on Tuesday, according to the police report. The teen got onto the tram shortly after 2 pm, intending to ride to the nearest S-Bahn stop. But the driver announced over the loudspeaker that she should get out of the vehicle, saying he would not drive anyone who wears a headscarf, the girl told police. According to her account, she did not receive support...
  • Kremlin asks Turkey to explain Erdogan's remark about toppling Assad

    11/30/2016 5:32:40 AM PST · by Freelance Warrior · 17 replies
    Reuters ^ | 11/30/2016 | Andrew Osborn
    The Kremlin said on Wednesday that Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan's statement that his forces in Syria were there to topple President Bashar al-Assad had come as a surprise to Moscow and that it expected an explanation from Ankara. In a speech on Tuesday, Erdogan said: "We are there to bring justice. We are there to end the rule of the cruel Assad, who has been spreading state terror," Erdogan said. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on a conference call: "It is a very serious statement and one which differs from previous ones [...] We hope that our Turkish partners...
  • Reports: Israel attacks targets in Syria

    11/29/2016 9:18:36 PM PST · by Lera · 71 replies
    Arutz Sheva ^ | Elad Benari
    Arab media reports that Israeli aircraft targeted the Syrian army and a Hezbollah convoy near Damascus. Arab media reported on Wednesday morning that Israeli aircraft carried out two airstrikes in the Damascus area overnight Tuesday. One report said that the first airstrike hit a weapons warehouse belonging to the Syrian army near Damascus. The second attack, according to the report, targeted a convoy of cars belonging to the Hezbollah terrorist group. Other Syrian websites reported that the attack on the Hezbollah convoy was meant to thwart a delivery of missiles from Syria to Lebanon. According to these reports, the convoy...
  • The Russian MoD and the Ministry for Emergencies are to send mobile hospitals to Syria

    11/29/2016 6:11:28 AM PST · by Freelance Warrior · 2 replies
    The Russia’s President Vladimir Putin ordered the MoD and the Ministry for Emergencies to send mobile hospitals to Syria to provide medical service to the locals. The press learned it from the President’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov. According to his words, the term was set as "in shortest possible time". He also said that the MoD was to send a medical team with a multi-functional hospital for 100 beds with a paediatric therapy ward. The hospital’s capacity for treating outpatients is 420 persons per day. The Ministry for Emergencies’ mobile facility has 50 beds and outpatient capacity of 200 persons.
  • We need a plan if Assad wins

    11/29/2016 2:26:53 AM PST · by TigerLikesRooster · 34 replies
    Telegraph ^ | 28 November 2016
    We need a plan if Assad wins 28 November 2016 ? 9:00pm The word “unacceptable” has been used a great deal in the context of the Syrian tragedy. Bashar al-Assad’s use of chemical weapons was branded “unacceptable” but there is evidence of their continued use after Western plans to bomb arms dumps were aborted. Then, it was “unacceptable” that President Assad would ever be part of the future of Syria. No peace deal would be countenanced while he remained in power. Yet, with Russian help, he may be on the verge of a military victory. It has been apparent for...
  • The Syrian Army has taken a large part of Aleppo

    11/28/2016 11:30:42 PM PST · by Freelance Warrior · 13 replies
    Vedomosti (In Russian) ^ | Novermber 29, 2016
    On the night of November, 29 the Syrian government troops were advancing on militants in neighbourhoods of Eastern Aleppo, as [Russian] Interfax reports referring to the Russian reconciliation centre in Syria. "14 neighbourhoods of Eastern Aleppo, where about 300,000 residential dwellings are situated, were freed from the terrorists yesterday." More than 8500 civilians, about 4000 of whom are children, have left the militants-controlled neighbourhoods. They receive temporary shelter, hot meals and, if needed, medical service. In the recent 24 hours more than 140 militants have given up resistance and left Aleppo. Earlier "The Washington Post"'s sources in the American administration...
  • ISIS fighters target Israel for the first time and are obliterated by warplanes after [tr]

    11/28/2016 9:00:04 AM PST · by C19fan · 20 replies
    UK Daily Mail ^ | November 28, 2016 | Chris Summers
    Four ISIS gunmen were killed today after they opened fire on Israeli soldiers in their first attack on the occupied Golan Heights. The Israeli soldiers were targeted with machine gun fire and mortars but were unhurt and fired back. But the gunmen - believed to come from a group called Shuhada al-Yarmouk, which is affiliated to ISIS - were killed by an Israeli air strike on their vehicle.
  • Inside Kerry’s race to stop the siege of Aleppo

    11/28/2016 1:05:18 AM PST · by Freelance Warrior · 25 replies
    The Washington Post ^ | November 27 at 7:33 PM | Josh Rogin
    Our indefatigable outgoing Secretary of State John F. Kerry is engaged in a furious if implausible diplomatic effort to strike a deal with Russia to end the siege of Aleppo. He is motivated not just by the humanitarian crisis in the Syrian city but also by the prospect that the incoming president will strike a different kind of deal with Moscow, one that abandons the Syrian opposition and places the United States squarely on the side of dictator Bashar al-Assad. The State Department is not advertising Kerry’s quiet mission, following the quick collapse of the last U.S.-Russia cease-fire agreement he...
  • War with Russia? US politicians close to approving ‘no-fly zone’ in Syria

    11/27/2016 9:19:18 PM PST · by Bobalu · 57 replies ^ | 11/22/16 | RICK STERLING
    Late in the day Tuesday November 15, Congress convened in a special session. With normal rules suspended, they passed House Resolution 5732 – the “Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act”. The resolution calls for intensifying already harsh sanctions on Syria, assessing implementation of No Fly Zone in Syria and escalating efforts to press criminal charges against Syrian officials.
  • IDF attacks ISIS target in Syria

    11/27/2016 9:38:36 PM PST · by Lera · 40 replies
    Arutz Sheva ^ | 11/28/16 | Uzi Baruch
    Israeli aircraft attack a facility in the Syrian part of the Golan Heights in retaliation for Sunday's attack on IDF soldiers. Israeli aircraft attacked early Monday morning a facility belonging to the Islamic State (ISIS) terrorist organization in the Syrian part of the Golan Heights. The attack was in retaliation to Sunday's attack on IDF forces who were engaged in operations along the Syrian border. The patrol returned fire, first with small arms and then with mortars. The Israel Air Force then located the armored vehicle that had been the source of the fire and destroyed the vehicle, killing all...
  • Syria war: Army makes rapid gains in rebel-held east Aleppo

    11/27/2016 4:35:38 PM PST · by Trump20162020 · 12 replies
    BBC ^ | November 27, 2016 | Staff
    Syrian government forces have been making rapid advances into eastern Aleppo, forcing thousands of civilians to flee. The Syrian army captured Jabal Badro on Sunday, a day after seizing Hanano district, and is making in-roads in other neighbourhoods. Its aim is to divide the rebel-held east of the city in two. Some reports said several thousand civilians were trying to escape, to government and other rebel-held areas.
  • Militants were planning embassy attack: Indonesian police

    11/27/2016 2:39:34 AM PST · by csvset · 2 replies
    France24 ^ | 27 nov 2016 | AFP
    <p>Indonesian police arrested a third Islamic State-linked militant Sunday accused of plotting to bomb the Myanmar embassy in Jakarta, as anger grows at a violent military crackdown on Rohingya Muslims.</p> <p>The militants -- all from a domestic cell affiliated with the Syria-based jihadist group -- had amassed enough explosives to create bombs more powerful than those used in the 2002 Bali bombings, which killed 202 people, police say.</p>
  • IS conflict: US soldier killed in Syria blast

    11/25/2016 1:37:31 PM PST · by Navy Patriot · 13 replies
    BBC "News" ^ | November 25, 2016 | Staff
    A US serviceman has been killed by an improvised explosive device while fighting against so-called Islamic State (IS) in Syria, officials say. The soldier, who has not been named, died after the device detonated in Ayn Issa, north of the IS stronghold Raqqa. It is the first such death since US special forces deployed in Syria in October 2015.
  • Two Israeli Druze plead guilty in killing of wounded Syrian [jihadi] fighter

    11/25/2016 12:10:04 PM PST · by SolidWood · 5 replies
    Times of Israel ^ | July 17, 2016 | Cliff Churgin
    Golan Heights residents attacked ambulance bringing injured fighters into Israel for medical care Two residents of the Druze village of Majdal Shams in the Golan Heights pleaded guilty Sunday to manslaughter and aggravated assault for their roles in a deadly attack last year on wounded Syrian fighters being treated in Israel. (snip) Munzir Halil was killed and the wounds of another Syrian fighter were exacerbated, in an incident that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu termed a “lynching” at the time.
  • IS conflict: Turkish soldiers killed in Syria attack

    11/24/2016 7:15:27 PM PST · by Texas Fossil · 11 replies
    BBC (UK) ^ | 24 November 2016 | none stated
    Three Turkish soldiers have been killed and 10 wounded in an attack in Syria, but reports differ about what happened.
  • Egyptian fighter jets arrive in Syria: report

    11/24/2016 6:47:38 PM PST · by Texas Fossil · 17 replies AMN ^ | 11-24-2016 | Leith Fadel
    DAMASCUS, SYRIA (2:20 P.M.) - Egyptian fighter jets landed for the first time at the Hama Military Airport this week, the Lebanon-based As-Safir newspaper reported on Wednesday morning. As-Safir claims that these Egyptian fighter jets will participate in the ongoing military operations against the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS), while also providing logistical support to the Syrian Arab Air Force (SAAYF). Al-Masdar contacted the Syrian Air Force to corroborate this report by As-Safir; however, no response has been received yet to verify the validity of this claim. Last month, several Egyptian military advisors traveled from Cairo to the...
  • Syrian Army and Kurdish YPG Launch Joint Operation East of Aleppo City

    11/24/2016 4:03:39 PM PST · by Texas Fossil · 27 replies
    South Front ^ | 11/24/2016 | none stated
    The Syrian army and the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) launched a joint military operation against the ISIS terrorist group east of Aleppo city on November 24. The joint forces reportedly liberated at least 2 villages in the area: Sheikh Kife and Nirbeh. Pro-government sources also argue that they liberated Juba and Halisah, but they had alredy been in the hands of YPG. Clashes between pro-government force and ISIS were also reported near Tal Shair. The joint advance of Syrian government and YPG forces took place following the recent escalations between them and Turkish-led forces across Syria. On November 23,...
  • Turkey Threat to Retaliate after Syrian Air Strike Kills Its Soldiers

    11/24/2016 3:42:00 PM PST · by Texas Fossil · 39 replies
    South Front ^ | 11/24/16 | none stated
    Ankara said it will retaliate after three of its soldiers were killed in a suspected air strike by the Syrian Air Force in the province of Aleppo. The attack occurred last night during a Turkey-backed militants operation in northern Syria, the Turkish military said in a statement. 10 other soldiers were wounded in the air strike that it “assessed to have been carried out by Syrian regime forces”. No details about the location of air strike have been provided. “It is clear that some people are not happy with this battle Turkey has been fighting against Daesh (Islamic State). This...
  • Russian Naval Aviation Cannot Gain Full-Fledged Combat Experience In Syria for Now

    11/24/2016 5:36:10 AM PST · by sukhoi-30mki · 19 replies
    TASS Defense ^ | Nov 23, 2016
    MOSCOW --- The Russian Naval Aviation’s planes and helicopters on board the Admiral Kuznetsov (NATO reporting name: Kuznetsov-class) aircraft carrier have been unable to learn full-fledged combat employment lessons from the military operation in Syria, expert Sergei Ishchenko writes in an article published by the Svobodnaya Pressa online news agency. A week has passed since Russian carrier-borne aircraft joined the fighting in the Syrian provinces of Idlib and Homs. The intermediate results produced by the Admiral Kuznetsov’s carrier air wing have been not what the top brass expected dispatching the huge ship and her impressive strike group to the Mediterranean...
  • How Trump can save Syria — without an invasion

    11/23/2016 4:59:23 AM PST · by RoosterRedux · 25 replies
    NYPost ^ | Benny Avni
    On Monday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan renewed his call to create a safe zone in northern Syria. With American air cover (and, yes, “boots on the ground,” in the form of US special forces), such a zone could serve as a haven for besieged Syrian civilians. It could also lead to a more strategic, American-led future reorganization of Syria as a loose confederation of separate Sunni, Alawite and Kurdish statelets. Yes, it’s complicated. Turkey is more interested in fighting against our Kurdish allies than against ISIS or Hezbollah. But we won’t be able to lean on Turkey (or on...
  • (Rep.) Tulsi Gabbard (D) - CIA Must Stop Illegal, Counterproductive War to Overthrow Assad

    11/21/2016 1:01:17 PM PST · by maggief · 83 replies
    CNN via YouTube ^ | Oct 21, 2015
    Published on Oct 21, 2015 Speaking with Wolf Blitzer on CNN, Tulsi explains why the US allying with Islamist extremists to overthrow Syrian President Assad is an illegal, counterproductive war that will cause even more human misery in the region and help ISIS and other Islamist extremists take over all of Syria. Instead of once again being distracted by trying to get rid of a secular dictator, Tulsi explains, the US must stay out of counter productive wars and focus on defeating the Islamist extremists who have declared war on America.
  • Turkey's Erdogan says he's been 'disillusioned' by Obama

    11/20/2016 4:58:51 PM PST · by Olog-hai · 37 replies
    Associated Press ^ | Nov 20, 2016 7:23 PM EST | Jeff Horwitz
    Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says he’s “disillusioned” with the Obama administration for failing to address Middle Eastern refugees and extradite one of Erdogan’s political rivals. “They failed to rise to the occasion and handle these issues seriously,” Erdogan said of the refugee problem during an interview with CBS’ “60 Minutes.” Turkey has taken in roughly 3 million refugees from Syria and elsewhere, twice the number that have fled to Europe. …
  • Rand Paul: Will Donald Trump betray voters by hiring John Bolton?

    11/19/2016 11:20:11 AM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 126 replies ^ | November 15, 2016 | Senator Rand Paul
    Rumors are that Donald Trump might pick John Bolton for Secretary of State. Heaven forbid.One of the things I occasionally liked about the President-elect was his opposition to the Iraq war and regime change. He not only grasped the mistake of that war early, but also seemed to fully understand how it disrupted the balance of power in the Middle East and even emboldened Iran.We liberated Iraq, but today their best friend is Iran, their second greatest ally is Russia, and their third strongest alliance is with Syria. Trump really seems to get the lesson. Hillary Clinton never did.Most importantly...
  • Sweden paid ISIS fighter $600 a month in child benefits

    11/19/2016 6:46:00 AM PST · by Olog-hai · 11 replies ^ | 19 Nov 2016 14:35 GMT+01:00
    A Swedish fighter for the terror group ISIS claimed over 50,000 Swedish kroner in benefits while living and working in its Raqqa stronghold. Michael Skråmo, 31, took his wife and four small children to Syria in August 2014, settling in Raqqa, from where he has appeared in a string of propaganda videos, sometimes with his children, posing with a Kalashnikov assault rifle. He now goes by the name of Abdul Samad al Swedi. According to Sweden’s Göteborgs Tidning (GT) newspaper, it took more than a year for Sweden’s welfare agency Försäkringskassan to sent a letter to Skråmo’s Gothenburg address informing...
  • Battle for Aleppo escalates, U.N. sees 'bleak moment'

    11/18/2016 6:41:58 PM PST · by Mariner · 11 replies
    Reuters ^ | November 18th, 2016 | By Tom Perry and Lisa Barrington | BEIRUT
    Syrian rebels fought fiercely with pro-government forces trying to advance into opposition-held areas of eastern Aleppo and warplanes kept up their bombardment of the area on Friday in a renewed bid by Damascus to retake the entire city. The U.N. humanitarian adviser said the besieged population of eastern Aleppo faced a "very bleak moment" with no food or medical supplies, winter approaching, and an increasingly fierce attack by Syrian and allied forces. Violence also escalated in and around Damascus, where government forces bombarded the city's rebel-held eastern outskirts and rebels fired rockets into the government-controlled city center, witnesses said. Syrian...
  • Russia's 'Night Hunter': from maiden flight to fighting ISIS

    11/18/2016 5:54:26 AM PST · by sukhoi-30mki · 9 replies
    Tass ^ | November 17, 2016
    Russia’s Mil Mi-28N “Night Hunter” (NATO reporting name: Havoc or Havoc-B) attack helicopter took to the skies for the first time on November 14, 1996. Nineteen years later, the attack helicopter joined the Russian air task force in Syria, which is fighting militants of the Islamic State and Jabhat al-Nusra organizations (outlawed in Russia) on the invitation of Syrian authorities. In particular, the Russian Defense Ministry posted a video on its official channel in the YouTube, showing a Night Hunter helicopter destroying terrorists’ armor. Russia is currently developing the helicopter’s new modification, Mi-28NM, taking into account the Syrian experience. As...
  • Russia Joins Aircraft Carrier Combat Club

    11/16/2016 5:39:32 AM PST · by sukhoi-30mki · 7 replies
    SEAPOWER ^ | November 15, 2016 | RICHARD R. BURGESS
    ARLINGTON, Va. — Russia’s navy has become the newest to launch combat strikes from an aircraft carrier, according to press reports, joining the tiny club of navies that have launched carrier aircraft into combat. The Russian carrier Admiral Kuznetsov, which is deployed to the Mediterranean Sea, launched strikes in Syria against rebel targets on Nov. 15, according to the Associated Press and Sputnik International. The carrier’s air wing includes MiG-29 and Su-33 jet fighters. The ship lost one MiG-29 on Nov. 13 in a mishap; the pilot ejected safely and was rescued. Russia joins the United States and France as...
  • This is How Russia Could Use Bastion Systems Against Ground Targets in Syria

    11/16/2016 5:25:17 AM PST · by sukhoi-30mki · 3 replies
    Sputnik ^ | 15.11.2016
    The use of Russia’s Bastion coastal missile systems in Syria was the first combat use of this system against ground targets. It was aimed at testing the capabilities of the system in real combat conditions, said Konstantin Sivkov, president of the Academy of Geopolitical Problems. Earlier on the day, Russian Defense Minister said Bastion systems had been deployed to Syria. The minister said they had conducted strikes on terrorist targets in Syria. "These complexes are able to destroy both sea and ground targets at a distance of 350 kilometers at sea and almost 450 kilometers over land," Shoigu said at...
  • Assad: Trump a Natural Ally If He Fights ‘Terror’

    11/15/2016 10:37:34 PM PST · by nickcarraway · 10 replies
    Al Arabiya ^ | Wednesday, 16 November 2016 | Al Arabiya
    Syria’s Bashar al-Assad said in an interview aired that Donald Trump will be a “natural ally” if the United States president-elect fulfils his pledge to fight “terrorists”. “We cannot tell anything about what he’s going to do, but if... he is going to fight the terrorists, of course we are going to be ally, natural ally in that regard with the Russian, with the Iranian, with many other countries,” the Syrian president told Portugal’s RTP state television on Tuesday. OPINION: What is next for Syria in Trump’s era? Trump will likely end military support to the Syrian opposition – a...
  • Iran has 25,000 Shiite fighters in Syria, says ex-Shin Bet chief

    11/15/2016 5:16:54 AM PST · by TigerLikesRooster · 10 replies
    Times of Israel ^ | November 3, 2016
    Iran has 25,000 Shiite fighters in Syria, says ex-Shin Bet chief Likud MK Avi Dichter warns Tehran has not abandoned its nuclear aspirations and seeks to rebuild the Persian empire By Times of Israel staff November 3, 2016, 10:34 pm Iran commands a force of up to 25,000 Shiite Muslim militants fighting in the Syrian civil war, a majority of them from Afghanistan and Pakistan, according to former Shin Bet chief Avi Dichter, who now chairs the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee. Get The Times of Israel's Daily Edition by email and never miss our top stories Free Sign...
  • 'Islamic State' reportedly training terrorists to enter Europe as asylum seekers

    11/14/2016 7:42:06 PM PST · by Olog-hai · 20 replies
    Deutsche Welle ^ | 11.14.2016 | Manasi Gopalakrishnan
    Germany’s spy agency has warned that the “Islamic State” (IS) is infiltrating refugee groups to get into Europe. Officials and analysts are now looking into methods by which potential terrorists can be spotted early. On November 13 last year, three teams of militants from the so-called “Islamic State” (IS), armed with Kalashnikovs, stormed the Stade de France stadium, the Bataclan concert hall and several pubs in Paris. The rampage left 130 people dead, 85 of them in Bataclan, where the band, the Eagles of Death Metal, was playing. Meanwhile, investigations have revealed that all nine men involved in the attacks...
  • Russian Carrier-based MiG-29K Fighter Crashes in Mediterranean; Shows Potential Gaps in Capability

    11/14/2016 5:52:58 PM PST · by sukhoi-30mki · 17 replies
    USNI News ^ | November 14, 2016 | Sam LaGrone
    A fighter assigned to the Russian carrier operating in the Eastern Mediterranean crashed during a landing approach on Sunday, a U.S. defense official confirmed to USNI News on Monday. The Mikoyan MiG-29K was part of a trio of MiGs that had sortied from Russian carrier Admiral Kuznetsov headed over Syria. At one point, for unknown reasons, one of the fighters turned back to the carrier and crashed while on approach to the carrier, the official said. Russian state media confirmed the crash on Monday afternoon. “An aviation accident with carrier-based fighter MIG-29K occurred during exercise flights as a result of...
  • An advanced Russian jet just crashed during its debut off the Syrian coast

    11/14/2016 11:09:21 AM PST · by BenLurkin · 59 replies
    Washington Post ^ | 11/14/2016 | Thomas Gibbons-Neff
    A Russian fighter jet crashed in the Mediterranean Sea while trying to land on Russia’s sole aircraft carrier, which is stationed off the Syrian coast, the Russian Ministry of Defense said Monday in a statement. The plane went down several miles from the carrier, the Admiral Kuznetsov, according to the Ministry of Defense. The pilot ejected and was recovered. “The health of the pilot is not in danger. The pilot is ready to carry out orders,” the Ministry of Defense said. Earlier in the day, Pentagon officials said they had indications that the Russians had lost a plane, and Fox...
  • Fight And Crush Islamic State By Our Side In Ground War, Donald Trump's General Urges UK

    11/13/2016 5:59:16 AM PST · by Strategy · 11 replies
    Daily Express ^ | November 13, 2016 | By Marco Giannangeli
    BRITAIN'S Armed Forces will be asked to form a closer military alliance with the US and fight operations on an "equal footing", sources in Washington DC revealed last night. The news emerged as General Lord Dannatt, former head of the British Army, called for the UK to boost defence spending by a further $5bn a year to fill "crucial capability gaps". He added that Britain's post-Brexit stance, which "bound in the US to European defence", would give it a new leverage over Brussels which could "put the pin" in the idea of a Euro Army. Advisors close to president-elect Donald...
  • Muslim “Refugee” Charged with 20 Murders in Austria

    11/12/2016 6:45:00 PM PST · by george76 · 11 replies
    Freedom Outpost ^ | November 12, 2016 | Pamela Geller
    How many like him have entered the West? How many will Obama allow into the US before he goes? This jihad murderer was a member of one of Obama’s partners in Syria, the “Free Syrian Army.” That tells you everything about his “vetting” process. ... Austrian prosecutors have charged a member of a Syrian rebel group with 20 counts of murder for allegedly executing wounded government soldiers in his home country. The 27-year-old man was arrested in a refugee shelter in western Austria in June after being denounced by a fellow Syrian. ... The prosecutors were able to bring charges...
  • An Undersea Game of Cat-and-Mouse Is Afoot off Syria as Air Strikes Loom

    11/11/2016 3:11:08 AM PST · by sukhoi-30mki · 7 replies
    Just as The War Zone predicted, reports are surfacing that Russia’s large naval flotilla, led by the carrier Admiral Kuznetsov, has already had a confrontation with a NATO submarine. Russia’s Ministry of Defense says that two destroyers chased away a Dutch attack submarine that was operating in the armada’s midst. The Russian task force had arrived off Syrian shores just two days ago. The Kremlin claims the submarine, which is thought to have been a Dutch Walrus class diesel electric boat, maneuvered dangerously close to the Russian naval group’s operating area off the coast of Syria. The Russian Ministry of...
  • Battle Against IS: France's Frontline Sailors

    11/10/2016 8:02:53 PM PST · by sukhoi-30mki · 4 replies
    FORCES TV ^ | 2016-11-10 | Simon Newton
    Meet the floating piece of France, projecting the country's military power around the world. The French carrier the Charles De Gaulle is currently in the eastern Mediterranean supporting operations against the so-called Islamic State. Her 24 Rafale fighter jets are flying sorties day and night over Iraq and Syria in support of Operation Inherent Resolve. For the past 15 years, De Gaulle has been involved in nearly every major international conflict, from Afghanistan and Libya, to the current war on Islamic State. With a crew of 2,000, this is the only nuclear powered carrier outside the US Navy. The De...