Wednesday, March 22, 2017

US Launched "Surprise" Attack On Raqqa. Blocking SAA/Hezbollah/Russian Forces

When I first started to assemble this post.. I was thinking, of course, about the further appropriation/theft of Syrian sovereign territory. The further confiscation of Syrian vital infrastructure. Then I realized that the US also moved to block Syria and her allies from their move towards Raqqa. 

I would call this a major escalation in Syria and region. Good thing the Trump Circus is always distracting. So, no change in policy from Obama to Trump then? None, that I can see. Full steam ahead.

 The Drive
 US-backed Syrian fighters and US special operations personnel, along with a cadre of Marines, have been deployed to the al Tabqa Dam, also known as the Euphrates Dam, located roughly 25 miles west of ISIS's self-proclaimed capital of al Raqqa.
 The surprise deployment to the dam was said to have been largely made possible via US airlift capabilities and fire support. Although the number of troops involved in the operation remains unconfirmed, multiple reports put it around 500.
 The dam provides electricity to the region, making it an especially high-value asset
  A military airbase and a detention center holding prisoners of ISIS are also nearby. The airfield in particular could provide a valuable hub of operations for aircraft and command and control assets, not to mention a firebase, if it were to be secured by US-backed forces.
 A valuable hub for what operations? Operations against which party? Syria? Turkey? Iran?

Top: The Euphrates Dam during construction in 1973. Bottom: Map showing relation of Euphrates Dam to al Raqqa.

 Here's where we get to the blocking of SAA and allies:
 Blocking the western approaches to al Raqqa may block fleeing ISIS fighters, but it also could work to block Syrian, Russian and Hezbollah troops from approaching the Islamic State stronghold. The US has executed a similar strategy to the north in Manbij, a move that has resulted in US and Russian troops staring each other down at a distance, while Turkey has said a military operation to route Kurdish fighters from the city is on the table. To call the town that is held by US and Syrian Democratic Forces—which are made up primarily of Kurdish fighters—a potential international flashpoint would be an understatement.
The US did not make this move now to block fleeing ISIS fighters from Raqqa- ISIS fighters, so called, have been fleeing Raqqa for weeks now!

Here's a report from March 08/2017: British YPG member says ISIS leadership fleeing Raqqa, Turkey excluded from the operation
"A British volunteer with the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) told ARA News that the Islamic State (ISIS) radical group is already relocating its leadership away from Raqqa city, in northeastern Syria.
Rojhat confirmed that ISIS is already fleeing Raqqa city.
“Absolutely, there are reports already coming out from Raqqa that they have relocated their leadership away from the city, so they know it will fall,” he said"
Pretty darn convenient, no? ISIS is fleeing Raqqa,  weeks ahead of a surprise US move on Raqqa-- Obviously the move on Raqqa has nothing to do with ISIS and everything to do with annexing Syrian territory in the remake the region agenda, while blocking SAA and allies.

NYT's ISIS Leaders Fleeing Raqqa- Two weeks ago
 As Syrian fighters backed by the United States close in on Raqqa, some of the Islamic State’s leaders have fled their self-declared capital
In case you doubted that ISIS had been leaving Raqqa weeks ago.
Clearly the US made this move to block SAA and allies-

Flashback: All of a sudden the appearance of the Shadowy Unmarked S-92 SuperHawk Reemerges in Middle East Hot Spot makes a whole lot of sense

 A gray, unmarked S-92 Superhawk with military modifications, including what appears to be elaborate communications and self defensive suites, as well as a rescue hoist among other add-ons, was spotted last week in the northern Syrian border town of Kobani.
 WASHINGTON, March 22, 2017 — Local forces in Syria launched a multi-pronged offensive that included a daring air assault behind enemy lines to liberate Tabqa Dam, located 25 miles upstream from the city of Raqqa, the Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve public affairs officer said today.

Army Col. Joseph E. Scrocca conducted a teleconference live from Baghdad with the Pentagon press corps to detail the operation
“Seizing Tabqa dam will isolate Raqqa from three sides and give the SDF a strategic advantage and the launching point they need to liberate the city,” he said.
He means ethnically cleanse the city of it’s Arab population.. Appropriation of Syrian territory and infrasctructure for PKK/YPG

 U.S. Airlifts Hundreds of Militia Fighters in Attack to Cut Off Raqqa

Hundreds of Syrian fighters and their American advisers were airlifted by United States helicopters across enemy lines on Tuesday and Wednesday in a bold operation

 In a significant commitment of American forces, Marine Corps howitzers and Army Apache attack helicopters provided firepower for the operation. Army surface-to-surface Himars rockets, based in northern Syria, may be used. American Special Operations forces are advising the Syrian fighters on the ground
  Hundreds of Syrian fighters and their American advisers were airlifted by United States helicopters across enemy lines on Tuesday and Wednesday.

 In a significant commitment of American forces, Marine Corps howitzers and Army Apache attack helicopters provided firepower for the operation. Army surface-to-surface Himars rockets, based in northern Syria, may be used. American Special Operations forces are advising the Syrian fighters on the ground, although a military spokesman asserted that they are not in direct, front-line combat.
 The hope is to take the dam intact.
  Rather then cover the involvement of US troops, in this obvious escalation, the media insists on covering the 'attack' on the UK parliament, that doesn't appear to have been an attack on the parliament or any parliamentarian. And then there is always the Trump circus- sigh.. while rolling eyes


  1. 2 Things come to mind.

    1) The syrians and the russians are with the americans, because well they are using themselves as shield between the YPG and ESF.

    2) The syrians and the russians are outplayed, by distracting them with this wall they are between the turks and ypg, because of the fear of Turkey expanding even more, apparently ranks higher. And if you look at the livemap. non-ES forces have started attacks and captures against the syrian government the same moment this happend. Which brings in reports that militias and army which were expanding east into ISIS territory now have to go back because their rear is now getting attacked.

    I think the Russians and Syrians are becoming to be affected by combat fatigue and have been ripe for a magic trick. Well this happens when you don't want to make compromises, you lose more than you originally would.

    1. Hey Kaz:

      some time back there was debate among the keyboard warriors here and there- move on Idlib?
      move on Raqqa?
      - I thought Raqqa was more important- So did SAA and company- They were making progress that much is obvious

      non ES forces (Not Euphrates Shield forces) attacking? Who would this be? Can you clarify?

      "Well this happens when you don't want to make compromises, you lose more than you originally would."

      what do you mean by this Kaz? I'm not sure and never like to assume

    2. With Non ES forces, I am talking about the other rebels, not Isis or israel, but the local rebels which at this point I am not sure if they are FSA, Al-qaida or whatever.

      And Raqqa might be more important, but when the previous silent areas started to fire up, they have to relocate their forces back to not lose against local rebels/ FSA / Al-qaida which are non ES-Forces.

      And when I talk about not wanting to make compromises, All this escalated because of Assad from the very start, all this grief, pain and sorrow, has been going on because Assad at the very start didn't want to mediate and have come to a point where both parties cannot live together anymore, at least those who remain. There is a rift which thanks to 3rd party players helped making it bigger. Now we are in the 6th year of the conflict and Assad still wants the whole of Syria under his control with only the help of the Russians and Iranians. And its very likely that they still consider the Kurds more non-people than the rebels and every actor knows it and uses this to their advantage a.k.a the Americans.

      Further more they had an opportunity to collaborate with the Turks, but they completely denied this by giving the YPG free reign even supporting them against the Turks in a indirect manner. For the sake of keeping the Turkish Bargaining chip to the Minimum. I don't know what Assad expects from the Kurds at this point, that after all this the Kurds will give them back all the territory they captured and cleaned up with the help of the americans? Or just letting the Kurds go ahead and clean them up because they are useless subjects who did not bow down to Assad. Who even cares civilians at this point, I am genuinely wondering.

    3. Kaz "Further more they had an opportunity to collaborate with the Turks, but they completely denied this by giving the YPG free reign even supporting them against the Turks in a indirect manner"

      That situation specifically has bothered me immensely.. I've wondered at times if there was some sort of quiet agreement between Turkey and Syria- I can't discount it entirely-

      That said, since 2013 Erdogan/Turkey has made it known, including to the Americans, Assad staying was ok by them. I believe the Reyhanli terror attack was a response to Turkey's reluctance to go along with the US

      I understood this in hindsight but knew in 2014 the US was sticking it to Turkey- that was clear

      - The change has been stated repeatedly- All Erdogan hot air aside- I've covered and covered this- Including the deal made between Turkey and Russia that resulted in Assad taking back Aleppo.

      Rather then people understanding that this is a fluid situation what I see is people stuck on these fixed concepts- so and so bad, so and so good and that's it. Everyone glosses over the fact that Assad employed the PKK against Turkey
      (because Turkey is the demonized nation and I do believe as Ally stated- there is a strange hatred of an irrational hatred/ equal to the absurd either hatred or love of Russia)

      I had hoped and hoped the Syrians, Turks and Iranians would cooperate because they all have big bullseyes painted on their nations states- But I've found Assad and Jaafari's rhetoric as over the tops as Erdogan's at times and I can't be sure if there is any cooperation between the bunch even though there should be.

      I should also say the demonizing of Turkey is equal to the absence of condmenation of Israeli involvement as the bigger player in the initial and continuing destabiliation of Syria.

      Israel has flow bombing run after bombing run into Syria.. When Syria's take down began the rebels were begging for Israel to come save them- Not the Turks, how Israel's oversize role in this entire situation has been downplayed in the msm and alt media is beyond me?!

      You make some interesting points

    4. There really isn't anything interesting there.

      That was in 2005

    5. anonymous 5:33

      interesting read from 05- the cedar revolution was contrived most likely- as for Hariri- I always thought it was Israel behind his killing- just on the who benefits angle alone- It was Israel

      but where are you going with this? how are you relating it to what is occurring now? clarify?

  2. A Pristina moment was inevitable. Kosovvo too...

    1. Is this what you mean?


      Us centcom made clear week ago that us will act wherever it wants and deems it in its interest regardless of Russia or anyone else.

      Us drills: black Sea matched by Russian airborne in Crimea ongoing
      Us drills: Korea
      US drills: kuwait

      Us warning coming out of Yemen allegedly on those laptop bans recalling the parcel bomb attempted bombings targeting Jewish sites in the us circa 2010

      Does raise the issue of Saudi calling up Pakistan troops to the southern borderas Russia warns of coalition attack on key port town outside capital. Cole offshore.

    3. saw something about laptops but didn't pay attention to it- read the wiki link

      still - went to look at news regarding Pak/Saudi Troops- it seems conflicitng

      what do you think it indicates?

    4. Pristina 1

      When Syrian warplanes bombed Kurdish fighters around the city of Hasaka on Thursday, their bombs came so close that U.S. commandos feared for their lives. The special operations troops were there assisting the Syrian-Kurdish People’s Protection Units, or YPG.

      December 26
      26Dec16: Kurds Near Euphrates Dam...Turkey Mobilizes. SDF backed by U.S. Special Forces and the coalition warplanes have achieved a new advancement towards the Euphrates Dam and the nearby city of al-Tabaqa in the Raqqa province, the stronghold of ISIS. “The SDF are now about 5km away from the Euphrates Dam located on the Euphrates at al-Tabaqa city,” the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported.

      From January 6
      U.S.-backed force seizes Syria citadel from ISIS. U.S.-backed militias in Syria have captured an ancient citadel from ISIS in a strategically significant advance against the extremist group in its stronghold of Raqqa province, a spokesman said Friday. The Jabar citadel on the banks of Lake Assad was captured by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) alliance Thursday, militia spokesman Talal Silo told Reuters. It is located near a dam on the Euphrates River that the U.S.-backed alliance also aims to capture in the current phase of its campaign.

      a "surprise" US move?
      10mar Syrian army mounting offensive along Euphrates western bank with Russian air support - Russian General Staff

      Rudssia long range bomber strikes raqqa: coordinated with pentagon using X-101 cruise missiles,
      Russian strategic bombers hit ISIS in Raqqa in coordination with Pentagon via ‘deconfliction line’. On January 21, six supersonic Tupolev Tu-22M3 bombers conducted air strikes against Islamic State targets in the Syrian governorate of Deir ez-Zor. The Russian planes hit IS base camps, weapon stockpiles, and armored vehicles.

      Why Tabqa dam not Euphrates dam?

      "When the Free Syria Army (FSA) captured al-Tabqa [in February 2013], they did their best to provide electricity. But for months we were getting about one hour of electricity per day. We had one month with no electricity at all," Ahmed, a resident of Tel Abyad in al-Raqqa province, who would not give his full name, told Al Jazeera over Skype. "But when the Islamic State group took control, electricity came for eight hours." "They know electricity and water will make them close to people," Ahmed said.

    5. "Why Tabqa dam not Euphrates dam?"

      To my understanding Tabqa and Euphrates are the same dam- So it's not an either/or therefore I don't understand your question.

      The three Syrian dams are the Baath Dam. The Tishrin Dam and Tabqa/Euphrates are the same-

      Called Euphrates dam more commonly known as Tabqa

      This dam is west of Raqqa

    6. Like Nusra?

      Actually, after they failed in Damascus, because the whole narrative was about "liberating Damascus from the state" during the first three years. When they failed, they moved to Homs, when they failed in Homs, they moved to Aleppo, they focused on Aleppo during the last three years, and for them this is the last most important card they could have played on the Syrian battlefield. Of course, they still have terrorists in different areas in Syria, but it's not like talking about Aleppo as the second largest city which has the political, military, economic, and even moral sense when their terrorists are defeated. So, for them the defeat of the terrorists is the defeating of their proxies, to talk bluntly. These are their proxies, and for them the defeat of these terrorists is the defeat of the countries that supervised them, whether regional countries or Western countries like United States, first of all United States, and France, and UK.

      Assad just called any US move on Raqqa illegal.

    7. "Any military operation in Syria without the approval of the Syrian government is illegal, and I said if there’s any troops on the Syrian soil, this is an invasion, whether to liberate al-Raqqa or any other place. This is first. Second, we all know that the coalition has never been serious about fighting Daesh or the terrorists, so we have to think about the real intention of the whole plan, if there’s a plan to liberate al-Raqqa," Assad told reporters.

    8. Is this a 032217 diversion?
      Damascus will file a lawsuit against local and international courts after having prepared dozens of documents proving that the crimes against the Syrian people and the country were committed by these individuals and states, Syrian Justice Minister Najm Hamad Ahmad said.

      US Coalition Has Been Destroying Syrian Infrastructure Since 2012. "Outgoing CIA head Brennan is well aware of the fact that long before the start of the Russian campaign, the international coalition has been systematically destroying Syria's economic infrastructure to weaken the legitimate government as much as possible, heedless of burdens for civilians resulting in millions of refugees," he said. "Surprisingly, the coalition has not attacked oil facilities captured by Daesh, which allowed the terrorists to make tens of millions of dollars per month through illicit oil trade and recruit mercenaries from all over the world." "Sooner or later one will be held accountable for it. That is why Mr Brennan's attempt to cushion the blow will hardly help. John Brennan is well aware of the real results of Russia's actions in Syria." "I would like to remind that all major wars of the latest decades, unleashed by the US on the pretext of fakes, in Yugoslavia, Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, all of them were accompanied and ended by the destruction of the countries' economic infrastructure by the US Air Force. And it is hardly a coincidence that companies close to the CIA and the Pentagon always were the first to offer their services in rebuilding the major economic facilities," he added.

    9. 'The feeling now is that it’s not enough. We know each and every one of us can suddenly come back to Hereford and find our names on an investigations list. Or it could happen many months, or even years later.

      'So while we check and double check orders, work things out to the smallest detail, the window of opportunity to act on an HGV gets smaller.

      'The delay is causing impatience with the Americans.'

      Read more:

      Russia Prepares Next White Book on Human Rights Violations in Ukraine. The book talks about the tragic events in Odessa, where more than 70 people died in a fire after clashes between independence supporters and nationalists, as well as an airstrike on a Luhansk administration building that killed eight, and other deadly cases of violence in the past months. "In the coming days, we will publish another White Book (on the events in April, May and the beginning of June). There are many facts, and they all need to be investigated," Dolgov said.

      Syria after the Israeli raid
      “The military aggression by Israel inside Syrian land on the 17th of March is proof of the support Israel provides to terrorist groups,” Aala said in Geneva on Monday. “This aggression for us is a violation of the charter of the United Nations, international law and UN Security Council resolutions. It is a great threat of international peace and security.”“It [Israel] wants to give a humanitarian face to the way it has treated terrorists from al-Nusra in Israeli hospitals,” he said. He further called on Israel to withdraw from the Golan Heights, which it recaptured from Syria in the Six Day War.

      Israel will never leave Golan, Netanyahu tells Putin

  3. Kaz you need to read up on Afghanistan.

    1. You mean Who controls Afghanistan controls Asia ?, and all suffering they have inflicted to keep it that way

  4. 'Israel' who is so fond of historico-prophetic analogies often refers to Ezechiel's prophesy, which is interpreted as the destruction of Russia on the 'mountains of Israel'. Although people tend to dismiss it, the instauration of the 'Greater (read Global) Israel' cannot come but after the destruction of Russia. Its defeat in Syria is supposed to be such a blow to Russia's prestige that it would kick-start the anti-Putin Revolution.

    1. WizOz what you are writing is reprehensible and utterly nonsense, Why would Israel the only stronghold of democracy and free values do that. Is probably the response you would normally get. People don't get it, but to understand Israel you need to understand its religion and know it mythologies, prophesies and whatnot. All this misdirection really works in their favour.

    2. In whose favor, may I ask?

    3. Israels favour.

    4. Basicly, I agree with your original post and that there is a labelling going on the moment people raise comments like yours, like that it is just a mere conspiracy, but if you know their code of conduct you can see that it holds water, but when you try to raise that you are labelled as anti-Semitic.

      Now with all the trouble going on in Syria, Israel can now actually do stuff it wouldn't be able to do as easy a few years ago. Israel is using one ingredient quite well. Time. Time for people to forget and time for making use of people and time to take some risks

    5. wizoz- 'Israel' who is so fond of historico-prophetic analogies often refers to Ezechiel's prophesy,

      can you leave a link to something I can read on this? new one to me

    6. Jews are not descended from Khazars, Hebrew University. New study finds no evidence that Ashkenazi Jews are the descendants of Khazars, or that subjects in the medieval kingdom converted to Judaism en masse.
      read more:

    7. Hi Penny,
      You wouldn't know where to start! They are endless. See just a few.


      Russia's Day of Destruction in Israel - Grant R. Jeffrey Ministries

      Israel makes massive discovery of oil in the Golan Heights. Is this a ...


      Do Putin's Actions in Syria Fulfill the Prophecy of Ezekiel Regarding ...

      Signs of the Times: Ezekiel's Prophecies Set to Unfold? - Inside Israel ...

      And it goes on and on and on. You get tired only going through the list. Try a Google search like 'ezekiel rusians mountains of israel'

    8. Penny,

      Add a few more:

      Chapter 19: Russia is Crushed in Gog - RamsHead Press

      Vladimir Putin Is the Prophesied Prince of Russia |

      Russian Military Buildup in Syria Concerns Israel - Israel Today | Israel ...

      2017: Putin's Ezekiel war, Erdogan the Beast, and the imminent ...
      Happy reading!

    9. Penny,
      I couldn't resist to add probably the most juicy bite:

      Will God Destroy Russia? By Tim LaHaye

    10. well that last one from Jan 17 is a real eye opening read

      Putin as Ezekiel prophesized destroyer of Jerusalem it looks like (reading wiki)
      Erdogan as the beast- everyone gonna invade Israel

      How many people read this and take it on face value? Love the dependence of DEBKA- can't go wrong there, not at all

    11. Tim LaHaye is still out there selling this stuff eh?
      I recall him from the Iraq attack

    12. Tim Lahaye was 'raptured' last year. But his spirit was 'left behind'.
      The stuff is peddled by a BS factory called:
      "The Rapture Forums is your complete end times resource for information on the rapture of the church. Find out all about this end times event today before it happens and don't get left behind".

      Take notice that the same scatology is peddled by the so-called "Islamic science of eschatology".

  5. Syrians filed a lawsuit today against various parties annd outsiders for the destruction of the country. Russia MOD said weeks ago that the US has purposely destroyed the Syrian infrastructure and it would held to account for it. Assad made the point days ago about Russia coming to Syria under international law and how Russia could play a role in halting Syria and Israel confrontation. Russian made the same international law argument this morning over the alleged safe zone proposl pointing out tat it is. Good idea if Syria and Iraq agree.

    Ypg and turkey exchanged fire with turkey in afrin overnight. is there still hope of closing the pocket with the latest US surge? With a rumored Iran base in latakia, Russian bases entrenched, hezbollah promising to leave Syria when conflict ends, where does it leave Turkish troops and their outposts in Iraq, Syria and complaints about the PKK affiliates in Sinjar?

    Turkey has wholesale changed its tactics: strategy tbd going back to that phantom drone shootdown in 2012.

    Dial back to 2010 and 2011 and the leaked Oslo meetings with Fidan and the PKK. Does it make more sense now?

    Republican People's Party, or CHP, leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu told the Hürriyet Daily News. "If the head of the intelligence service, whose job is to keep the state's secrets, is being tapped, it shows the rulers of this country. This is not an ordinary person. This is the chief of the intelligence."

    Kılıçdaroğlu said he did not want to discuss the tape's content since "it would be to the advantage of those who leaked these recordings." He urged Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to take action against illegal wiretapping.


    2. anonymous- "Dial back to 2010 and 2011 and the leaked Oslo meetings with Fidan and the PKK. Does it make more sense now?"

      I wish it did, but, it doesn't. read the gatestone link- Turkey was talking with Barzani and co about the PKK presence- Fidan was maybe talking or maybe not- this was maybe related to an offer of some sort that was to be made to the PKK, before the PKK broke the ceasefire?

      Not sure?
      Are we remotely on the same page?

      "Ypg and turkey exchanged fire with turkey in afrin overnight. is there still hope of closing the pocket with the latest US surge?"

      I suspect that is what the US is up too, yes, cutting on continuous swath of Syria off for the PKK....

      again, an outline of what your thinking here would be great-

    3. How does a PKK and Turkish reconciliation in any form comport with Syrian developments from 2005-today? Armed opposition agreed yesterday to attend Geneva talks...

      2013 assassination

    4. "Just a few months ago he said Iran is an existential concern for Israel, today when turned into a politician at the Herzliya Conference, he said that Israel faces no existential threat," the party said in a statement. "It's funny how quickly Ya'alon changed his hide."


      Was the leaked Russian base related to the sniper days later in Afrin/Hatay



    Turkish PM Yıldırım meets former ministers in absence of Gül and Davutoğlu

    1. scuse my language but 'holy shit' I forgot about that one- it amazes me sometimes the stuff I find here and go oh yah, I recall that!

      How the heck do you recall it all?

    2. As in tear down that wall erdogan...with B52 parked in qatar?

  7. Ummah Link News (ULN) is the world’s Islamic & Muslim Ummah news media, agency and world’s Muslim source of true and intelligent information for public in general, businesses and professionals. To know about Islam & Ummah visit Ummah Link News.

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