Author Topic: Syria Superthread [merged]  (Read 526932 times)

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Offline GAP

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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1775 on: June 19, 2017, 11:22:21 »
Russia is calling the U.S.'s bluff......
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Offline Cdn Blackshirt

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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1776 on: June 19, 2017, 11:38:34 »
Slightly different version of events than what the US released.

Based on historical precedents, I'm at the point where I assume the Russians are lying about everything, until proven otherwise....
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Offline GAP

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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1777 on: June 19, 2017, 12:11:48 »
Slightly different version of events than what the US released.

Based on historical precedents, I'm at the point where I assume the Russians are lying about everything, until proven otherwise....

I remember Obama making his line in the sand, and then .......nothing....this time, with a new President, they are immediately pushing back. What happens now determines how he is received by the adversarial part of the world.
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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1778 on: June 19, 2017, 12:21:53 »
... I'm at the point where I assume the Russians are lying about everything, until proven otherwise....
Or, as this guy says ...
Quote
Do not believe anything until the Kremlin denies it™
... What happens now determines how he is received by the adversarial part of the world.
:nod:
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Offline MCG

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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1779 on: June 19, 2017, 12:27:24 »
What happens now determines how he is received by the adversarial part of the world.


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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1780 on: June 19, 2017, 15:14:49 »
“The risk of insult is the price of clarity.” -- Roy H. Williams

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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1781 on: June 19, 2017, 15:21:04 »
Maybe.  I think the world today is less like autumn of 79 years ago and more like autumn of 109 years ago.

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Offline Rifleman62

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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1783 on: June 20, 2017, 10:04:11 »
http://www.foxnews.com/world/2017/06/20/breaking-us-shoots-down-iranian-drone-in-syria.html

US shoots down Iranian drone in Syria - By Lucas Tomlinson Published June 20, 2017 Fox News

A U.S. jet shot down an Iranian drone flying in southern Syria near U.S.-backed forces on Tuesday, a U.S. defense official confirmed to Fox News.

A U.S Air Force F-15 shot down the Iranian-made drone, according to the official.

This is the second time the U.S. has shot down an Iranian drone in less than a month. It also marks the fifth time since late May the U.S. military has bombed pro-Syrian forces in southern Syria.

US special operations forces have been training Syrian rebels at an outpost near al-Tanf Syria, close to Syria’s border with Iraq and Jordan for the past few years.
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Offline MCG

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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1784 on: June 27, 2017, 00:26:00 »
http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/white-house-warns-syria-s-assad-against-chemical-attack-1.4179207

White House claims that it sees the same indicators that preceded the last Syrian chemical weapon attack, and a warning is sent to Syria: "don't do that"


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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1785 on: July 01, 2017, 19:08:41 »
Interesting question -- shared under the Fair Dealing provisions of the Copyright Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. C-42) ...
Quote
Analysis: Can IS be ousted from Syria without Assad's help?
By ZEINA KARAM and JOSH LEDERMAN
Associated Press


As the U.S.-led coalition tightens the noose around the Islamic State group in Syria, President Bashar Assad's Iranian-backed troops are also seizing back territory from the militants with little protest from Washington, a sign of how American options are limited without a powerful ally on the ground.

Washington is loath to cooperate with Assad's internationally ostracized government. But it will be difficult to uproot IS militants and keep them out with only the Kurdish and Arab militias backed by the U.S. - and a coalition spokesman pointed out that Assad's gains ease the burden on those forces.

Letting Assad grab IS territory, however, risks being seen as the U.S. legitimizing his continued rule and would likely strengthen his hand in his war against the already struggling rebellion. It also threatens to further empower Assad's allies, Iran and the Lebanese Hezbollah, which both have forces alongside his troops in the assault into IS-held territory.

Within the Trump administration, there is a split over whether to aggressively try to stem Assad's advances, said a senior U.S. official, who wasn't authorized to speak to reporters and requested anonymity.

Army Col. Ryan Dillon, the spokesman for the anti-IS coalition, said Syrian government forces are welcome to reclaim IS-held territory and fill the vacuum once the extremist group is gone.

The statement was startling - even more so because soon after President Donald Trump this week warned Assad he would pay "a heavy price," claiming "potential" evidence that Syria was preparing for another chemical weapons attack.

The mixed messages reveal a discomfiting fact that most policy makers would rather not spell out: Assad is a pariah but he is also a convenient tool to secure and govern territory in majority-Arab cities in a complex terrain.

The situation in Syria is a contrast to Iraq, where the coalition and the Iraqi government, working hand in glove, appear to be on the verge of retaking the main IS redoubt in city of Mosul.

The Syrian government has repeatedly suggested that everyone is welcome to work with it to defeat IS.

Mohammad Kheir Akkam, a Syrian lawmaker, questioned U.S. support for the Kurdish-led forces "despite the fact that the Syrian-Russian cooperation has achieved more results in combating terrorism," while U.S. efforts have "had the opposite result."

The U.S. so far has shunned any cooperation with the Syrian leader, whom Trump described as an "animal." Instead, it has partnered with local Kurdish and Arab forces known as the Syrian Democratic Forces, or SDF.

Those fighters are currently spearheading the assault on the Islamic State group's self-declared capital, Raqqa in northern Syria, and then face the prospect of assaulting the group's final major stronghold to the southeast, in Deir el-Zour.

But U.S. support for the Kurdish-led group has angered Turkey, which views it as an extension of a Kurdish insurgency within its own territory. The SDF is also viewed with suspicion by the predominantly Arab residents of Raqqa and Deir el-Zour.

Furthermore, the SDF, numbering around 50,000 fighters, is already risking overstretch and is in no way ready for the more challenging battle in Deir el-Zour.

Assad and his Iranian allies, on the other hand, have steadily positioned themselves in key areas on the flanks of the U.S.-led war against IS, grabbing territory on several fronts, including on the outskirts of Raqqa and Deir el-Zour. With Russian and Iranian support, Assad has made steady gains and now controls almost all of Syria's major cities except those held by IS.

The symbolism was striking this week as a smiling Assad paid a visit to central Hama, driving his own car, and to a Russian air base in western Syria, where he posed alongside Russian generals and inside the cockpit of a Russian SU-35 fighter jet.

Syrian troops have positioned themselves on Raqqa's southwestern flanks, and officials have vowed to retake the city eventually.

The U.S. has insisted that the city should be handed over to a local council that would handle its administration post-liberation - and it has made clear it will not tolerate the Syrian government and its allies cashing in on the fight. U.S. forces recently shot down a Syrian aircraft as well as drones believed connected to Iranian-supported forces as tensions escalated near a base where the coalition trains Syrian rebels.

But the senior American official said there was significant disagreement about how aggressively the U.S. should try to prevent Assad from reclaiming the territory IS vacates, with some in the White House pushing a more forceful approach while the State Department and the Pentagon warn of the risks.

Keeping Assad's territory to a minimum would ensure his hand isn't strengthened in an eventual political deal to end the conflict, making it more likely the U.S. could deliver on its longstanding desire to see him leave power. Limiting his control in eastern Syria would also prevent Iranian-backed forces from securing a wide corridor through Iraq to Syria and all the way into Lebanon.

The more risk-averse voices in Trump's administration are wary about letting the U.S. slip into a more direct fight with Assad, the official said.

Dillon, the coalition spokesman, told reporters at the Pentagon that the U.S. goal is to defeat IS wherever it exists. If others, including the Syrian government and its Iranian and Russian allies, want to fight the extremists, "we absolutely have no problem with that."

Frederic C. Hof, director of the Atlantic Council's Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East, said the comments reflect the narrow U.S. view of the Syria war, focused very specifically on the neutralization of IS.

In the coalition view, "it is all about killing ISIS in Raqqa." Hof wrote in an article this week. "Creating conditions that would keep it dead? That, presumably, would be someone else's job."
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Offline Colin P

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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1786 on: July 05, 2017, 17:31:02 »
However Assad is facing an issue that the more territory he seizes, the more territory he must protect and the more people he must control. His forces are not growing or if there is an increase, it is not as much as terrain acquired. ISIS will move into non-convential warfare, aiming to create unrest and outrage between the various communities. The kurds will be to strong to openly attack and it’s possible the Syrian Kurds may accept themselves as a independently run Syrian Federal State, which removes a potential conflict with the regime and acts as a block to keep Turkey out. ISIS will also try to upset any relationship building between Sunni and Shia. If the Shia led/Iranian backed government repeats it’s full retard on the Sunni’s again, the Sunni tribes may turn to KSA to protect them, which would lead to a direct conflict between KSA and Iran, which would force the US to pull KSA *** out of the fire as the Iranians pummel them.   

Offline Cdn Blackshirt

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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1787 on: July 05, 2017, 20:21:25 »
I apologize because I do not remember where I read it to cite, but I did read an op-ed that claimed upwards of 80% of Assad's effective ground combat units were now non-Syrian (the majority being Iranian).

I think in any future Assad territory, it's guaranteed there will be IRGC bases ensuring Iran's foothold in the area. 

That being said, as fearful as I am of Iran, it's actually Erdogan that scares me the most. I think that guy could be the catalyst for a major war.
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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1788 on: July 06, 2017, 10:27:16 »
The question will be what does Iran expect for the price in blood and treasure it spent in Syria? You can bet that some in Assads circle will be pissed that he lost half the country and sold the other half to Iran and Hezbollah. The Russians don't really want that much and are likely good for the local economy. Iran is going to meddle fearsomely in Syrian politics for many years to come, it's going to be quite the Faustian pact. 

Offline Altair

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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1789 on: July 06, 2017, 11:21:45 »
The question will be what does Iran expect for the price in blood and treasure it spent in Syria? You can bet that some in Assads circle will be pissed that he lost half the country and sold the other half to Iran and Hezbollah. The Russians don't really want that much and are likely good for the local economy. Iran is going to meddle fearsomely in Syrian politics for many years to come, it's going to be quite the Faustian pact.
A Shia bloc of influence, starting in Iran, going through Iraq, Syria and Lebanon.

Probably to act as a counter to Sunni Islamic bloc lead by Saudi Arabia.
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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1790 on: July 06, 2017, 11:42:07 »
I think we are being fed a line concerning Syria.  The Syrian government controls 71% of the population and the Kurds control 14%.  These natural allies control 85% of the population.  Why are they natural allies?  The Turks despise the Kurds as terrorists and the US is going to leave.  The only potential friend left for the Kurds is Assad.  Turkey will not allow an independent Kurdish state.

Assad is supported by the Shia and Christian population and by secular Sunnis.  He is opposed by the Sunni jihadists and the U.S.  Assad is secure in his position and is slowly mopping up rebel held areas after cleaning the rebels out of Homs and Aleppo.  The rebels hold no cities.  The U.S. has nothing to offer the Syrians other than minimizing damage.
« Last Edit: July 06, 2017, 11:55:49 by Rocky Mountains »

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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1791 on: July 06, 2017, 11:54:08 »
A Shia bloc of influence, starting in Iran, going through Iraq, Syria and Lebanon.

Probably to act as a counter to Sunni Islamic bloc lead by Saudi Arabia.

The Shia population of Syria is Alawite which does not have much in common with Iranian and Iraqi Shias.  They are likely considered heretics.  They are little more than 10% of the Syrian population so they will not be part of a grand Shia Alliance.  Assad rules by popular consent, to a large degree, and alienating close to 90% of the population who are non-Shia isn't going to happen.
« Last Edit: July 06, 2017, 11:57:17 by Rocky Mountains »

Offline Altair

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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1792 on: July 06, 2017, 12:18:01 »
The Shia population of Syria is Alawite which does not have much in common with Iranian and Iraqi Shias.  They are likely considered heretics.  They are little more than 10% of the Syrian population so they will not be part of a grand Shia Alliance.  Assad rules by popular consent, to a large degree, and alienating close to 90% of the population who are non-Shia isn't going to happen.
As much as different sects of shia islam may be opposed to other sects of shia islam, I think if shia muslims have a choice between other shias or sunnis, they reluctantly pick those heretical shias.

The enemy of my enemy and all that.
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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1793 on: July 06, 2017, 12:32:11 »
Another wrinkle - from the U.S. Sec o' State (highlights mine) ...
Quote
... The United States believes Russia, as a guarantor of the Assad regime and an early entrant into the Syrian conflict, has a responsibility to ensure that the needs of the Syrian people are met and that no faction in Syria illegitimately re-takes or occupies areas liberated from ISIS' or other terrorist groups' control. Russia also has an obligation to prevent any further use of chemical weapons of any kind by the Assad regime.

The United States and Russia have already achieved progress in establishing de-confliction zones in Syria that have prevented mutual collateral damage. Our military leaders have communicated clearly with one another to make sure no accidents occur between our two countries in the Syrian theater. Where there have been minor incidents, they have been resolved quickly and peacefully. This cooperation over de-confliction zones process is evidence that our two nations are capable of further progress. The United States is prepared to explore the possibility of establishing with Russia joint mechanisms for ensuring stability, including no-fly zones, on the ground ceasefire observers, and coordinated delivery of humanitarian assistance. If our two countries work together to establish stability on the ground, it will lay a foundation for progress on the settlement of Syria's political future ...
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Offline Colin P

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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1794 on: July 06, 2017, 12:49:11 »
A Shia bloc of influence, starting in Iran, going through Iraq, Syria and Lebanon.

Probably to act as a counter to Sunni Islamic bloc lead by Saudi Arabia.

That's part of it, but going by Hezbollah actions in Lebanon, they will want an increasingly larger say in what goes on day to day in Syria. That will start to grate on Syrians. Another thing I would do if I was Assad is give any loyalist Palestinians that took up arms for the regime full citizenship and cede them land previously owned by anyone who was deemed a Jihadist. Particularly in strategic areas, I fully expect some ethic cleansing to secure areas of importance after the main civil war ends.   

Offline Cdn Blackshirt

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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1795 on: July 06, 2017, 13:04:12 »
Don't underestimate the Iranian's hate for the Jew's either.

Not sure if anyone else saw it, but there was a satellite photo published in last couple of days that shows they were using a Star of David as the target for their latest surface-to-surface missile test.

Can you imagine if the opposite occurred and the Israeli's used an Islamic Crescent as a target? 

Love the double-standards....   :facepalm:
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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1796 on: July 06, 2017, 13:41:21 »
i think most of the "hate" exists in the minds of the religious clerics and hardliners in the IRG. Most Iranians likely don't have a hate on for Israel and even made jokes how "Israeli smart bombs are so smart they can pick an Iranian pocket" A reference to the Iranian government funding Hamas and Hamas getting decimated. Iran is only 51% Persian, they must always watch their own backyard otherwise the Kurds and Balchs might have "ideas". 

Offline Cdn Blackshirt

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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1797 on: July 06, 2017, 13:49:59 »
i think most of the "hate" exists in the minds of the religious clerics and hardliners in the IRG. Most Iranians likely don't have a hate on for Israel and even made jokes how "Israeli smart bombs are so smart they can pick an Iranian pocket" A reference to the Iranian government funding Hamas and Hamas getting decimated. Iran is only 51% Persian, they must always watch their own backyard otherwise the Kurds and Balchs might have "ideas".

Well, the fact it exists in the guys running their missile program, is definitely a bad thing... 
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Re: Syria Superthread [merged]
« Reply #1799 on: July 22, 2017, 07:04:13 »
A couple of tidbits:
...[/list]
Following up from this ...
Quote
The head of Special Forces said Friday that Russia had established a more credible foothold than the U.S. in Syria, and that Moscow could use this influence to essentially expel his forces.

Addressing a security conference at the Aspen Institute, Special Operations Command chief Army General Raymond Thomas said that, while counterterrorism remained a priority for his forces, international law could prevent the U.S. from maintaining a long-term presence in Syria, where its intervention has been declared illegal by the  government. Russia is also involved in the fight against the Islamic State militant group (ISIS) and other jihadists in Syria, but entered at the request of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, something that Thomas said could allow Moscow to make a solid case for the U.S.'s departure.

"Here's the conundrum: We are operating in the sovereign country of Syria. The Russians, their stalwarts, their backstoppers have already uninvited the Turks from Syria. We're a bad day away from the Russians saying, 'Why are you still in Syria, U.S.?,'" Thomas said.

"If the Russians play that card, we could want to stay and have no ability to do it," he added ...
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