Friday, October 23, 2015

The Battle for Aleppo

It surely seems Syrian Army has made gains in Aleppo.

NYT's had begrudgingly acknowledged the gains- Russia Makes an Impact in Syrian Battle for Control of Aleppo
" Syrian Army troops and allied militias inched their way closer to the contested city of Aleppo, as a slowly developing offensive stretched into its fifth day. To the east of the city, forces loyal to Syria,( not Bashar Al Assad: Disinfo removed), appeared to be pushing to retake a military airport surrounded by militants with the Islamic State, also known as ISIS or ISIL"
 The progress of the offensive has been halting, however, slowed in part by American-made antitank weapons supplied to insurgents by Saudi Arabia.
America supplied ISIS through  Saudi Arabia
  "Weeks of military activity by the government and the latest moves near Aleppo illustrated the “dramatic impact” of the Russian intervention so far, said Yezid Sayigh, an expert on Arab armies at the Carnegie Middle East Center in Beirut.With relatively minimal effort, the Russians had managed to “boost regime and army morale”
Faraj Shahid, a Turkey-based rebel activist who is from the countryside south of Aleppo, said the area was the site of frequent attacks by insurgents on the government’s critical supply line from Hama in central Syria. Over the last four days, he said, government forces had taken control of at least three villages in the vicinity.
Zakaria Malahifji, a leader of a Western-backed rebel coalition, said that the government “chose this front because of its strategic location on the supply route, and its easy geography.” He added, “Airstrikes can be effective because of the flat battlefield, and attack helicopters are present all the time.”
 "Rebel commanders have sent out panicked calls to fighters to end their divisions in the face of the latest threat. A rebel operations room in Aleppo issued a statement over the weekend calling on the rebels to put their “differences aside and turn the table on your enemy.”
Prior to the latest , not so positive report linked below, we had news of John Kerry negotiating...

  The diplomatic game- Hedging every bet. Playing every angle.

There was also a report from PamArmenian News

PanARMENIAN.Net - Syrian troops backed by Russian air strikes have advanced in Aleppo, Deputy Chairman of the Board of Armenia’s Social Democrat Hunchakian Party told reporters Thursday, October 22, reports.
Don't know how accurate the above report was, but, it was looking good!

The latest news has the NATO/CIA Assets, collaborating as a team, attacking Syrian army supply lines
Islamic State fighters took control of a section of road southeast of Aleppo on Friday, threatening the Syrian army's only supply route into the city, a group that monitors the civil war said.
If this report is accurate this can't be good news.

Islamic State captured parts of a road running between the towns of Khanaser and Ithriya, said Rami Abdulrahman, head of the British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. He said battles were continuing in the area.

Al Qaeda's Syria wing and other insurgents are also battling pro-government forces in surrounding areas, said Abdulrahman, who tracks the conflict using sources on the ground.
Islamic State said in a statement distributed online that it had taken control of eight army checkpoints on the road and cut off the army supply route to Aleppo, which was Syria's most populous city and commercial hub before the war broke out in 2011.

A report on Syrian state news agency SANA did not mention the road but said the army and local militia had taken control of four villages southwest of Aleppo on Friday.
Areas around Aleppo have seen days of heavy fighting after Syrian troops backed by Lebanese Hezbollah and Iranian fighters launched an offensive last week to retake territory around Aleppo from rebels and jihadist fighters. 
The offensive has concentrated so far on clearing insurgent-held areas south of Aleppo rather than the city itself, which is home to 2 million people and divided between government forces to the west and rebels in the east.
 Strategic Importance of Aleppo:
 GREENE: Remind us, if you can, why the city of Aleppo is so important strategically.

TABLER: Aleppo is not only the second largest city in Syria but is the main urban center in the northern part of Syria. It's close to the Turkish border. The economy of Aleppo was one of the largest in the country. And it was also home to a number of tourist sites that people from all over the world would visit. So it's also the place where the United States had its longest representation in terms of diplomacy. So a lot's going on there. And unfortunately, large parts of the city have been destroyed as a result of the war.
When Tabler states Aleppo was the place the US had its longest representation in terms of diplomacy Tabler obviously and clearly means that the terrorist held area of Aleppo was where the US had most influence hence diplomatic representation

GREENE: When you hear about Syria being such a beautiful country with such a cultural heritage, a lot of that focus is on Aleppo.

TABLER: Absolutely. You have the citadel there, but also just the number of Islamic sites. Lots of mosques have been destroyed. Lots of other parts of the city have been destroyed. The regime controls about 40 percent of it. And the rest have been controlled by a number of rebels over the last four years.

GREENE: Well, the Assad regime, I mean, not able to take the eastern part of the city from the rebels for so long. Things seem to be changing now. Is this a big, big example of how Russia's helping the government?

TABLER: Absolutely. The Russians are essentially providing air cover for the Assad regime and for Iranian-backed forces to try and encircle the city. They've been trying to do it for years, sort of finger or hand reaching up from the east towards the west to encircle the city and the rebels inside, and they've been unable to do it. They're going to again.

Finally:  Those refugees flooding into Europe seem like quite the bunch of hooligan/criminals- Unsurprising. Cause I'm quite certain that NATO sent the worst to Europe with some families for window dressing

Slovenia Refugees set fire to their accommodations:

RT: Should we be listening to migrants and their frustrations over the conditions they find themselves when they come into Europe?  For example, we saw them in Slovenia allegedly setting fire to an asylum center because of their treatment.

Marco Gasic: They obviously want us to listen, but there seems to be a certain lack of respect for European institutions in their behavior. They seem to sense a weakness on the part of European leaders as far as letting them in is concerned.

When my father immigrated to Canada from Italy after WW2, he got nothing from Canada.
No accomadation. No taxpayer funded rent paid. No handout. No charity.  Nadda. Nothing. Zip. Zero. He found a job and worked. My oh my how things have changed.


  1. Hey All
    Super busy lately. Hard to keep up with what's going on.
    Keep me in the loop, please
    I appreciate it.
    Thanks :)

  2. Hi Penny,

    The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights is simply a one man propaganda machine run out of a two bedroom house in Coventry, England.

    RT exposes an internet blogger beloved of the western mainstream media.

    Even wiki quotes a Guardian reported who exposed this fraud.

    As for Abdulrahman's story above regarding the attacks on the Syrian army supply routes south of Aleppo. Well, it makes perfect military sense for the rebels to attack long and exposed supply routes. However, whether they can hold on to exposed roadside positions for any length of time given Russian and Syrian air superiority is extremely unlikely.

    Any serious obstacle to the Syrian army supply routes is going to be quite literally blown away. I don't see any other reports that Khanaser, on the road south of Aleppo, has been lost to the rebels.

    The rebels have retaken a few villages / small towns north of Hama and there is a to and fro in the villages around the Kuweires air base, but any local rebel successes have been short lived and most likely lead to more terrorist deaths and loss of much needed munitions, equipment and other supplies.

    The rebels are often drugged up to promote fearlessness and toughness, and their fanaticism is reminiscent of the Japanese soldiers of world war two, but in the face of Russian weaponry and tactical excellence, although they will continue to cause the deaths of more Syrian soldiers and civilians, they clearly have zero chance of any lasting military victories so long as Russia continues to support Assad.


    1. Hey Anthony
      I am very well aware of what SOHR is a who runs it.
      You hit the nail on the head wrt the attack on the supply line, which is why I used the information.. "it makes perfect military sense for the rebels to attack long and exposed supply routes"
      Which it does. So, I used the info
      . It's what should be expected but still I have issues with that outfit, so I qualified the information with the 'If this report is accurate..'
      Info has to make sense to me, from a real world practical point of view or I won't use it- I try very hard to be as accurate as possible.

      'The rebels are often drugged up to promote fearlessness and toughness'
      Yup and have been all along- their are some stories way back regarding the drugs handed out to these persons- mostly captagon

  3. I read the following headline and thought "Here we go, the Russians are going to engage in some shadowy cooperation with the Americans...

    "Moscow Ready for Deep Coordination With US on Fighting Terrorism in Syria"

    But hadn't the Russians stated that there was no such thing as the FSA?

    Then I read the article and Lavrov is very cleverly calling America's bluff.

    The Russians are ready to cooperate with the Americans and work with the FSA, but first the Americans must of course make clear who the FSA are where they are located.



    1. I saw the Lavrov statement and thought it very interesting. I think you are correct that he is calling the bluff of the Americans


      Brookings running more disinfo.

      If Nayef is as good as said, wonder if he dug into his father's death? And other reports. Jubier and the King's Son trying outflank KSA? Who is backing who? Riedel is either confused, misinformed or disingenuous. Which one?

      reminiscent of the latest Hez rollups in Yemen and Kuwait and Cyprus

  4. Oh those eyebrows..... they are like parenthesis around the look in the eyes "we are fucked" Bwaaaahhhhaaaaaaaaaa


    1. Yah, Kerry eyebrows do seem to have a life of there own :))

  5. I watched President Putins speech at the Valdai Club, it was 40 minuets of my life very well spent. here is the sakers link to the text of that speech.


    PS I just cant get over kerrys still laughing

    1. will check that out- ty kam nam
      and good to know you are still about :)

  6. Anthony: regarding vulnerability of air craft carriers see this post from a few days ago

    The US Navy’s Sitting Ducks

    The Bloomberg article reads like an admission of vulnerability concerning the massive aircraft carriers in general, then considering the Russian cruise missile volley from the Caspian, this also reads like an acknowledgement that those cruise missiles were the reason the Roosevelt beat a hasty retreat from the Persian Gulf immediately afterwards.

    "A Navy war game in 2002 that simulated a swarm attack by speedboats of the type Iran has in the Gulf had devastating results: 16 major warships would be destroyed, including one aircraft carrier. Anti-ship weaponry has only grown more potent since then.
    These massive ships were never intended to take on jihadists and other asymmetric threats. But it’s no longer clear that they would be useful in a war against a major power such as Russia or a middling one such as Iran. The Pentagon has spent billions outfitting aircraft carriers with air defenses that are unproven, and the relatively short range of their planes –- an F/A-18 Hornet has to turn around at roughly 500 miles -- leaves them vulnerable to land-based missiles that can travel twice that far.

    Carriers increasingly seem like sitting ducks. And, if one was ever sunk, with 5,000 Americans on board, the blow to the military and nation would be almost unthinkable."

    1. also keep in mind the Russian have put a few of the 'black hole in the ocean" subs into the black sea fleet.

      cycles back to the reports of Israeli subs in PG

      And the reports yesterday that the Israelis put planes into Iran testing in 2012 when the US brought another carrier in.

      Officials Detected Israeli Planes in Iranian Airspace in 2012

      The head of US command in Asiapac just said it is up to Obama to decide on patrols in the SCS after Australia said no thank you

    2. And the Russians just sent anti sub ship lead to the Atlantic

    3. I have a post forthcoming on the decision to patrol the south china sea- extremely provocative stuff...