Posts Tagged ‘ Syria ’

Syria: Cease-fire backed by US and Russia gets off to rocky start

September 13, 2016
posted by

Washington Post    

"A U.S.- and Russian-backed cease-fire agreement that went into effect Monday was almost immediately violated, diluting hopes for an imminent halt to the relentless violence that has raged for the past five years and raising new questions about U.S. policies aimed at ending the war. Residents and activists of the besieged rebel portion of Aleppo said that Syrian government helicopters had dropped barrel bombs on one neighborhood of the city and that loyalist forces were shelling a route intended to be used for the delivery of humanitarian aid. Pro-government media accused the rebels of launching a new attack in the southern province of Quneitra, and there were reports of airstrikes and artillery shelling in other parts of the country." (09/12/16)

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/ceasefire-in-syria-set-to-take-hold-as-scores-die-in-air-strikes/2016/09/12/c93bbf4e-7850-11e6-8064-c1ddc8a724bb_story.html  

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Syria: Deaths after alleged chlorine gas attack on civilians

September 7, 2016
posted by

CBS News CBS News    

"An official in Syria's rebel-held Aleppo said Wednesday that at least two people died from a suspected chlorine attack reported a day earlier. Mohammed Abu Jaafar, head of the local forensic department in rebel-held Aleppo, said 29-year old Mohammed Afifa died overnight of heart failure and acute respiratory distress caused by inhalation of toxic gas. A 13-year-old girl also died from further complications Wednesday. ... Activists and rescuers said at least 70 people were treated for breathing difficulties after government helicopters dropped the suspected chlorine cylinders on al-Sukkari neighborhood. The report could not be independently verified and it was not clear how it was determined that chlorine gas was released." (09/07/16)

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/syria-aleppo-chlorine-gas-attack-dead-bashar-assad-denies-chemical-weapons/  

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Partitioning Syria would be folly

September 7, 2016
posted by

Daniel Larison The American Conservative
by Daniel Larison  

"Partition is a 'solution' that is often favored by Westerners because it lines up with an assumption that the political fates of other nations should ultimately be 'shaped' by our governments. It ignores the agency of local people except when convenient, and treats their country as an object to be divvied up as seems best to people who will never have to live with the consequences. There may occasionally be conflicts in which partition becomes the least awful alternative left, but it can only 'work' to establish a lasting peace when it is accepted by the vast majority of the people affected by the decision and when it creates successor states that are likely to be viable." (09/06/16)

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/larison/partitioning-syria-would-be-folly/  

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Syria: Dozens killed in explosions targeting government-held cities

September 6, 2016
posted by

CNN CNN    

"Deadly explosions rocked Syria Monday, hours after the United States and Russia discussed an end to the violence during G20 talks. At least 40 people were killed and dozens more wounded in a series of coordinated explosions across the country, Syrian state media reported." (09/05/16)

http://www.cnn.com/2016/09/05/middleeast/explosions-syria-cities-dozens-killed/  

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Syria: Regime jets bomb rebels in Hama province

September 1, 2016
posted by

Yahoo! News Yahoo! News    

"Areas of Syria's Hama province captured by Syrian insurgents came under heavy air attack on Thursday as government forces sought to counter a major rebel assault in an area of strategic importance to President Bashar al-Assad. The rebel thrust in Hama marks a new challenge to Assad and his allies in a part of Syria where he has tried to consolidate his grip on power against a more than five-year-old insurgency. ... Syrian state television said the air force had carried out 'concentrated strikes' against what it described as terrorists in the area, saying tens of them had been killed." (09/01/16)

https://www.yahoo.com/news/heavy-air-strikes-target-rebel-held-areas-western-073216764.html  

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Syria: Islamic State reports death of senior leader

August 31, 2016
posted by

The Washington Post Washington Post    

"The Islamic State reported the death of its chief spokesman, Abu Muhammad al-Adnani, on Tuesday, potentially signaling the loss of a senior militant who has steered the group’s campaign to bring violent operations to the West. If confirmed, Adnani's death would damage the Islamic State in two areas that have made the terrorist organization particularly dangerous: its sophisticated use of social media to reach a global audience and its willingness to employ the crudest forms of violence in scattered plots outside Iraq and Syria." (08/30/16)

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/checkpoint/wp/2016/08/30/islamic-state-reports-death-of-spokesman-and-senior-leader-in-aleppo/  

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The interventionist’s lament

August 30, 2016
posted by

Daniel Larison The American Conservative
by Daniel Larison  

"One of the more frustrating things about the debate over Syria policy is the widely-circulated idea that refraining from military action makes a government responsible for any or all of the things that happen in a foreign conflict later on. Somehow our government is responsible for the effects of a war when it isn't directly contributing to the conflict by dropping bombs, but doesn't receive any blame when it is helping to stoke the same conflict by other means. Many pundits lament the failure to bomb Syria, but far fewer object to the harm done by sending weapons to rebels that have contributed to the overall mayhem in Syria." (08/30/16)

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/larison/the-interventionists-lament/  

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Syria: Turkish regime claims airstrikes kill 25

August 29, 2016
posted by

Business Insider    

"Turkish air strikes in north Syria killed 25 Kurdish militants, the Turkish military said on Sunday, the fifth day of a cross-border campaign launched alongside its Syrian rebel allies that aims to strike at Kurdish forces and Islamic State. The military said the militants were killed in the area of Jarablus, a Syrian town on the border with Turkey. The army said it was taking all measures to avoid any civilian deaths." (08/28/16)

http://www.businessinsider.com/turkish-air-strikes-in-syria-reportedly-kill-25-kurdish-militants-2016-8  

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Syria: Turkey invades, with US air support but to fight US-backed Kurds

August 25, 2016
posted by

Military.com    

"Turkish tanks and troops backed by U.S. air support flying out of Incirlik Air Base crossed into Syria on Wednesday with the intent of taking the border town of Jarablus -- partly to stop it from falling to U.S.-backed Kurdish militias. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that the cross-border action, called Operation Euphrates Shield, was in response to recent terror attacks claimed by ISIS in Turkey but was also aimed at the Syrian Kurdish PYD, or Democratic Union Party. The military wing of the PYD is the YPG, or People's Protection Units, which has been the most effective U.S.-backed opposition force in northeastern Syria." (08/24/16)

http://www.military.com/daily-news/2016/08/24/turkish-tanks-roll-into-syria-with-us-air-support.html  

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Syria: Turkish forces shell Islamic State, Kurdish positions

August 23, 2016
posted by

BBC News BBC News [UK state media]    

"Turkey has bombarded so-called Islamic State (IS) targets across the border in northern Syria ahead of an expected ground attack on an IS-held town. Some 1,500 Turkish-backed Syrian rebels have also gathered in the Turkish city of Gaziantep, poised for an offensive to drive IS out of Jarablus. Turkey has also shelled Syrian Kurdish forces nearby, apparently to deter them from taking Jarablus themselves. ... Turkish forces have been exchanging shellfire with IS positions in the Jarablus area since Monday. However, Turkey is also wary of moves that might bolster Syrian Kurdish forces, known as the YPG, which it views as an extension of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), a Turkish-Kurdish rebel group fighting for autonomy since the 1980s." (08/23/16)

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-37161538  

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Iran: Russians stop using air base for strikes in Syria

August 23, 2016
posted by

USA Today USA Today    

"Russia will stop using a base in Iran for airstrikes targeting militants in Syria for the time being, Iran's foreign ministry said Monday. The move came after Iran's defense minister criticized Russia earlier in the day and said its announcement last week that it used the Hamadan air base for strikes on the Islamic State group was 'kind of show-off and ungentlemanly.'" (08/22/16)

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2016/08/22/iran-says-russia-stop-using-its-air-base-strikes-syria/89091630/  

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Russian forces use Iran as base to bomb Syrian militants for first time

August 17, 2016
posted by

Reuters    

"Russia used Iran as a base from which to launch air strikes against Syrian militants for the first time on Tuesday, widening its air campaign in Syria and deepening its involvement in the Middle East. In a move underscoring Moscow's increasingly close ties with Tehran, long-range Russian Tupolev-22M3 bombers and Sukhoi-34 fighter bombers used Iran's Hamadan air base to strike a range of targets in Syria. It was the first time Russia has used the territory of another nation, apart from Syria itself, to launch such strikes since the Kremlin launched a bombing campaign to support Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in September last year." (08/16/16)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-mideast-crisis-russia-iran-idUSKCN10R0PA?il=0  

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Syria: Warplanes pound Syria’s Idlib as battles rage in Aleppo

August 14, 2016
posted by

New York Times    

"Syria's rebel-held, northwestern Idlib province came under heavy bombardment Sunday, activists reported, as rebels and pro-government forces battled for control of the nearby city of Aleppo. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported 26 airstrikes across the province, one of the last remaining bastions of rebel control. ... The Local Coordination Committees, an activist network, said Russian jets struck the towns of Jisr al-Shaghour and Binnish, while the Observatory reported strikes on the provincial capital, Idlib. It was unclear how the activists identified the planes. Moscow has been waging an air campaign in support of government forces for nearly a year." (08/14/16)

http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2016/08/14/world/middleeast/ap-ml-syria.html  

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What is Obama’s worst foreign policy mistake? It’s not Syria

August 11, 2016
posted by

Daniel Larison The American Conservative
by Daniel Larison  

"I am often struck by how absurd it is that Obama is so often faulted on Syria for what he hasn't done rather than what he has. We are repeatedly told that he erred because he didn't illegally bomb Syria in 2013, or because he didn't throw weapons at the problem earlier on. He receives much less criticism for arming opposition forces that are in league with jihadists (and then having those weapons seized by jihadists) or expanding the anti-ISIS bombing campaign into Syria on his own authority. That's not because these other policies have been particularly effective or successful, but because they mean that the U.S. is 'doing something' in Syria, and that is all that seems to matter for interventionist critics. 'At least we're not standing idly by,' they say. That's right. Instead, we're needlessly contributing to the mayhem." (08/11/16)

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/larison/what-is-obamas-worst-foreign-policy-mistake-its-not-syria/  

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Syria: Islamist rebels break siege of Aleppo in setback to Assad regime

August 8, 2016
posted by

CNN CNN    

"After months of being pummeled from the air and by Syrian artillery, an Islamist-led rebel coalition has made a dramatic breakthrough in relieving the siege of Aleppo, Syria's largest city. Their assault -- the first test for a new group born out of al Qaeda's Syrian affiliate -- appears to have taken the exhausted Syrian army by surprise. ... The rebel offensive has been led by Jabhat Fateh al Sham, formerly the al Nusra Front. Two weeks ago, al Nusra very publicly declared it was breaking its long-standing ties with al Qaeda to build closer alliances with other jihadist and rebel groups in Syria." (08/07/16)

http://www.cnn.com/2016/08/07/middleeast/syria-aleppo-changing-landscape/  

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Syria: Five dead as Russian helicopter shot down

August 2, 2016
posted by

CNN CNN    

"A Russian helicopter was shot down Monday after delivering aid to the Syrian city of Aleppo, killing all five crew members on board, Russian state media reported. The Russian Defense Ministry said the Mi-8 helicopter was shot down by ground fire in Idlib province as it returned to base, state TV reported." (08/01/16)

http://www.cnn.com/2016/08/01/middleeast/syria-aleppo/  

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Syria: Regime, Russians to open aid, exit corridors in besieged Aleppo

July 28, 2016
posted by

CNN CNN    

"Syrian and Russian forces are to open humanitarian corridors for people to flee the besieged city of Aleppo, both countries' state media reported Thursday, the day after Syria's army announced it had encircled the city and cut off rebel supply routes. Three relief corridors would be set up to distribute food and medical aid to civilians in a 'large-scale humanitarian operation,' Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said, while a fourth would be established in northern Aleppo for rebels who wished to lay down arms and surrender, according to Russian state media."

http://www.cnn.com/2016/07/28/middleeast/syria-aleppo-humanitarian-corridors/  

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Syria: Suicide bombing kills dozens

July 27, 2016
posted by

CNN CNN    

"A suicide bombing killed 48 people, among them women and children, Wednesday in northern Syria, the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said. A truck bomb exploded near buildings belonging to a Kurdish security agency and other governmental departments in the city of Qamishli near the border with Turkey, CNN's Nick Paton Walsh reported." (07/27/16)

http://www.cnn.com/2016/07/27/middleeast/syria-isis-suicide-bombing/  

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Assad: US is “not serious” about defeating Islamic State

July 14, 2016
posted by

NBC News NBC News    

"A defiant Bashar al-Assad expressed confidence that Syria's bloody war could be won within months, saying Russia's intervention has helped tip the scales toward victory. Assad spoke exclusively to NBC News on Wednesday at his office in Damascus in a wide-ranging interview about the Syrian war, ISIS, the U.S. and his legacy. He was unruffled by the State Department branding his vow to retake every inch of Syria as 'delusional,' saying it was only a matter of time until he regained full control of his country. ... according to Assad, the 'very frank' relationship he has with [Vladimir] Putin is rooted in their shared values and common interest: defeating terrorists. The Syrian president claimed that's far from true of the U.S., which he accused of not truly wanting to see ISIS'[s] defeat. 'They're not serious,' Assad said." (07/14/16)

http://www.nbcnews.com/news/world/bashar-al-assad-says-u-s-not-serious-about-defeating-n609036  

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Syria: Regime declares 72-hour Eid al-Fitr truce

July 7, 2016
posted by

BBC News BBC News [UK state media]    

"The Syrian military has unilaterally declared a 72-hour truce covering the whole country, state media report. The 'regime of calm' began at 01:00 on Wednesday (22:00 GMT on Tuesday) and will last until midnight on Friday. A number of rebel groups have said they will respect the truce, which covers the Islamic festival of Eid al-Fitr." (07/06/16)

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-36722942  

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The Syria “dissent” memo and US bureaucratic pressure strategy

June 29, 2016
posted by

Gareth Porter Antiwar.com
by Gareth Porter  

"The memorandum by 51 State Department officials calling for US military intervention in Syria last week has been treated in news media coverage as a case of dissent from existing Syria policy by individual officials involved in Syria policy. But the memo has all the earmarks of an initiative that had the blessing of the most senior officials in the department -- including Secretary of State John Kerry himself -- rather than having been put together by individual officials entirely on their own. And it may mark the beginning of an effort to take advantage of the presidential candidacy of Hillary Clinton." (06/29/16)

http://original.antiwar.com/porter/2016/06/28/syria-dissent-memo-us-bureaucratic-pressure-strategy/  

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Lebanon: Army detains 100 Syrians after Qaa bombings

June 28, 2016
posted by

BBC News BBC News [UK state media]    

"Lebanon's army has detained more than 100 Syrians for entering the country illegally following a series of suicide bombings in a border village. The raids took place at informal refugee camps in the Baalbek region. On Monday, at least eight bombers blew themselves up in the predominantly Christian village of Qaa, killing five people and injuring almost 30 others. No group has said it was behind the attacks, but suspicion has fallen on jihadist militants from Islamic State. IS has carried out previous suicide bombings that have killed scores of people in Lebanon." (06/28/16)

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-36649779  

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Israeli intel chief: We don’t want Islamic State defeated in Syria

June 22, 2016
posted by

Antiwar.com Antiwar.com    

"In a speech at the Herzliya Conference, Israel's military intelligence chief, Major General Herzi Halevy, took Israel's long-standing position that it 'prefers ISIS' over the Syrian government to a whole 'nother level, declaring openly that Israel does not want to see ISIS defeated in the war. ... Israeli officials have regularly expressed comfort with the idea of ISIS conquering the whole of Syria, saying they find it preferable to the Iran-allied government surviving the war. At the same time, they were never so overtly supportive of ISIS and its survival." (06/21/16)

http://news.antiwar.com/2016/06/21/israeli-intel-chief-we-dont-want-isis-defeated-in-syria/  

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Syria: Islamic State forces launch counter-attacks on regime troops, US-backed rebels

June 21, 2016
posted by

Reuters    

"The Islamic State group launched a counter-attack against fighters trying to capture the Syrian city of Manbij on Monday, inflicting heavy casualties on the U.S.-backed forces, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and the militants said. The monitor said the militants won back three villages south of the besieged city in a surprise assault against fighters from the U.S.-backed Syria Democratic Forces. At least 28 SDF fighters were killed. ... Islamic State militants were also able to roll back the Syrian army, which had reached as close as 10 km (6.2 miles) south of the strategic town of Tabqa, an Islamic State-held city on the Euphrates River, in Raqqa province." (06/20/16)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-mideast-crisis-syria-militants-idUSKCN0Z623G  

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Syria: Change the (Dissent) Channel

June 20, 2016
posted by

Thomas L Knapp -- photo by Avens O'Brien William Lloyd Garrison Center for Libertarian Advocacy Journalism
by Thomas L Knapp  

"The US State Department's 'Dissent Channel' is a mechanism through which department personnel may disagree with administration policy without fear of job retribution. On June 17, Mark Landler of the New York Times revealed the existence of a recent 'Dissent Channel' memo bearing the signatures of 51 diplomats and other department officials and calling for 'a more militarily assertive US role in Syria [versus the Assad regime], based on the judicious use of stand-off and air weapons.' Let me open my dissent to the dissent by invoking the late Pete Seeger: 'Oh when will they ever learn?'" (06/18/16)

http://thegarrisoncenter.org/archives/6336  

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